Jasmyne Cannick's Voter Guide

Voter Guide

Welcome!

Jasmyne Cannick

I am pleased once again to share with you my recommendations on who and what to vote for in the upcoming Los Angeles County 2020 November General Election.

As a Democrat, a Black woman, and someone who is both politically and socially conscious, I don’t always agree with my political party’s recommendations. I look at what’s best for People of Color (all colors), poor people (of all colors), and what just makes common sense.

I don’t accept any money for endorsements for my voter guide. Not one penny. I do this as a service to my community and because I respect the trust that my community has in my opinion.

This election, Los Angeles County will mail all registered voters a Vote by Mail ballot to ensure voters have a safe and accessible voting option during COVID-19. In-person voting will also be available at Vote Centers. You can find answers to frequently asked questions below.

Early voting starts Monday, October 5 and Election Day is Tuesday, November 3. Remember that with the new Vote Centers, you can vote ANYWHERE in L.A. County–not just near your home.

Happy Voting!

IMPORTANT DATES

Monday, October 5 Vote-By-Mail ballots go out in the mail
Early Voting Begins (dates and hours may vary based on where you live)
Monday, October 19 Last day to register online or by mail for the November General Election
Tuesday, October 27 Last day to request an absentee ballot.
Absentee ballot means the same as vote-by-mail ballot
Monday, November 2 Early Voting Ends
Tuesday, November 3 ELECTION DAY
Last day to register to vote in person
Last day to return your absentee ballot in person by 8 p.m. or postmarked by Nov. 3

UPCOMING EVENTS

Sunday, October 11, 2020 WATCH VIDEO: LAAAWPAC Judicial Candidates Form
Saturday, October 17 Voter Education Forum
Wednesday, October 28 Celebrating Queer History and The Vote

PRESIDENT AND VICE-PRESIDENT
OF THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA

ABOUT THE JOB:

Largely ceremonial. The President is both the head of state and head of government of the United States of America and Commander-in-Chief of the armed forces. Under Article II of the Constitution, the President is responsible for the execution and enforcement of the laws created by Congress. The vice president of the United States is the second-highest officer in the executive branch of the U.S. federal government, after the president of the United States, and ranks first in the presidential line of succession. The vice president is also an officer in the legislative branch, as president of the Senate. In this capacity, the vice president is empowered to preside over Senate deliberations, but may not vote except to cast a tie-breaking vote. The vice president is indirectly elected together with the president to a four-year term of office by the people of the United States through the Electoral College.

Term: 4 Years

Joe Biden Kamala Harris
Joe Biden
Kamala Harris

NOTE:

There is nothing exciting about replacing one old white man for another–but that’s just what we’re about to try and do.  And even with Senator Kamala Harris by Joe Biden’s side, it still hasn’t been enough to excite me–not more than the prospect of giving Donald Trump a pink slip and showing him the door.  Now that excites me in ways that would be inappropriate for me to share with you here.

But I think that’s where a lot of us Democrats are who haven’t drunk the kool-aid.  We’re voting on November 3rd to get rid of Trump, not because we’re head over heels in love with the Biden-Harris ticket.

The Democratic Party had to be goaded and shamed into supporting criminal justice reform and Black Lives Matter–like with everything that is specific to Black people.  And even now it’s a lukewarm fair whether friend relationship as evidenced by the failure of California’s democratically Legislature to pass comprehensive police reforms and Biden’s recent workaround during the first debate on a direct question about Black Lives Matter.

Everything was all good–so to speak–until it was time to shit or get off the pot–and it was clear Biden was the nominee. Now everything the Democratic Party claimed to support and champion (publicly) is out the window and we’ve gone from A to Z without stopping to have a conversation on why we should support two people who had significant roles in the mass incarceration of People of Color in this country.  Nah.  We’re supposed to just pay no attention to the man (and woman) behind the curtain and obediently show up and vote for the Biden Harris ticket on cue.

Do you know when you have a fight with your bff or your partner and before you can make up and move forward, y’all have to have that come-to-Jesus-meeting?  That frank, often unpleasant, conversation that’s needed to resolve the issue at hand?  The Democratic Party leadership forgot to have that conversation with us about Joe Biden and Kamala Harris’ about-face on criminal justice.  And because of their failure to do just that, many younger Gen X and millennial voters–who are more inclined to stand by what they believe in than older go-along-to-get-along moderate Democrats–are just not that excited about the Biden Harris ticket.  Being a Black woman isn’t just an automatic pass–ask Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey.

Ballots are dropping and early voting is starting.  The Democratic Party still has time to get it together and have that conversation with a part of its core constituency to make sure they get out and vote.  Failure to do so could cost the Democratic Party this election and give Trump four more years.


U.S. CONGRESS

ABOUT THE JOB:

The big function of representatives is making the laws. An individual member of the House can propose a bill to, for example, protect pregnant women from discrimination or outlaw a dangerous drug. First, the representative and their staff (usually just the staff) write the text of the bill. Then it goes to one of the House committees for review. A bill involving the CIA would go to the House Intelligence Committee, for instance. If it makes it through committee, the House will vote whether to send it to the Senate.  Congressmembers are federal lawmakers.

Can Help You With: Veteran’s Benefits, Social Security, Medicaid
Cannot Help You With: Street Cleaning, Tree Trimming, Trash Pick-Up, Unemployment Benefits, Your DWP Bill

Karen Bass Maxine Waters
Karen Bass, 37th District

South Central Los Angeles, Crenshaw
Baldwin Hills, West Adams

Maxine Water, 44th District

South Central Los Angeles, Watts
Inglewood, Hawthorne, Torrance

Nanette Barragan – 44th District (Carson, Compton, Florence-Firestone, Lynwood, North Long Beach, San Pedro, Watts and Willowbrook)


CALIFORNIA STATE SENATE

ABOUT THE JOB:

The California State Senate is the upper house of the California State Legislature, the lower house being the California State Assembly. The Senate convenes, along with the State Assembly, at the California State Capitol in Sacramento. The Senate consists of 40 members, with each member representing more people than California’s members of the House of Representatives. Senators are state lawmakers.

Term: 4 Years

Can Help You With: DMV, Unemployment, Paying More State Taxes, Bans on Menthol Cigarettes including Newports
Cannot Help You With: Street Cleaning, Tree Trimming, Trash Pick-Up, Your DWP Bill

Steve Bradford
Steven Bradford, 35th District

Carson, Compton, Gardena, Inglewood, and Watts


CALIFORNIA STATE ASSEMBLY

ABOUT THE JOB:

The California State Assembly is the lower house of the California State Legislature, the upper house being the California State Senate. The Assembly convenes, along with the State Senate, at the California State Capitol in Sacramento.The Assembly consists of 80 members, with each member representing at least 465,000 people. Assemblymembers are state lawmakers.

Term: 2 Years

Can Help You With: DMV, Unemployment Benefits, Paying More State Taxes, Bans on Menthol Cigarettes including Newports
Cannot Help You With: Street Cleaning, Tree Trimming, Trash Pick-Up, Medicaid, Social Security, Your DWP Bill

Miguel Santiago Reggie Jones Sawyer Mike Gipson
Miguel Santiago
53rd Assembly District

DTLA, Koreatown, Boyle Heights, Vernon, West Adams

Reggie Jones-Sawyer
59th District

South Central L.A.

Mike Gipson
64th District

Carson, Compton, Watts, North Long Beach


STATEWIDE PROPOSITIONS

WHAT THEY ARE:

In California, a ballot proposition can be a referendum or an initiative measure that is submitted to voters for yes or no vote. If passed, it can alter one or more of the articles of the Constitution of California, one or more of the 29 California Codes, or another law in the California Statutes by clarifying current or adding statute(s) or removing current statute(s). Measures can be placed on the ballot either by the California State Legislature or via a petition signed by registered voters.

14 YES Continues stem cell research funding to develop treatments and cures for chronic and life-threatening diseases
15 YES Balanced reform that reclaims $12 billion for our local schools and communities.
16 YES End the ban on affirmative action to level the playing field for women and communities of color.
17 YES Restores voting rights to Californians who have completed their prison term. Free the Vote!
18 YES Allows those who turn age 18 by a November general election to vote in that year’s primary elections.
19 YES Helps seniors, disabled homeowners, and wildfire victims; closes tax loopholes on out-of-state trust fund heirs.
20 NO Wastes tens of millions on prisons causing cuts to rehabilitation and schools. Stop the Prison Spending Scam!
21 YES Keeps families in their homes, prevents homelessness, and preserves affordable housing.
22 NO Exempts Uber and Lyft from providing drivers the benefits they deserve. Drivers’ rights over Uber/Lyft profits.
23 YES Improves safety and prohibits discrimination in dialysis clinics to protect gravely ill patients.
24 NO Would expand or amend the provisions of the California Consumer Privacy Act of 2018.
25 NO Replaces discriminatory and unjust money bail system with another discriminatory and unjust system.

Required Reading: Prop. 25 Replaces One Bad System With Another


DISTRICT ATTORNEY

ABOUT THE JOB:

The District Attorney in Los Angeles County is responsible for the prosecuting individuals charged with felony or misdemeanor crimes, handles specialized felony cases involving narcotics, gang-related crimes, sex crimes, child abuse, child abduction, consumer and environmental protection, domestic violence, major frauds, insurance frauds and elder abuse.  The District Attorney also assists crime victims and witnesses and conducts office hearings to resolve neighborhood disputes and minor criminal complaints outside the criminal court system.

Term: 4 Years

Can Help You With: Going to jail or prison, getting justice
Cannot Help You With: Prosecuting rogue police officers who kill unarmed people or white Democratic donors who have Black men dropping dead in their apartments of crystal meth overdoses, getting justice–but we are hoping that changes soon.

George Gascon
George Gascón

NOTE: Jackie Lacey has to go.  From her failure to charge Ed Buck to her reluctance to charge rouge police officers who kill unarmed people–she has got to go.  That said, George will have to go too if he gets into office and doesn’t do right.  Los Angeles is already a bastion of crime and the last thing we need to do is make it worse.  A lot of voters have expressed trepidation with supporting George–as have I.  While I want to see the criminal justice system reformed, police officers charged when it warrants and everyone treated equally under the law–that’s not the same as saying I want violent criminals roaming the streets free and no jails.  Uh uh. I like jails and prisons just fine for the people who actually need to be in them.  I am supporting George with the caveat that, I’ll be watching and paying close attention.  There are no more guaranteed lifetime positions for elected officials–just ask former Sheriff Jim McDonnell and soon to be former Sheriff Alex Villanueva and District Attorney Jackie Lacey.  For George, he should consider his first term, if elected, as a probationary period.  We’ll see how he does and evaluate his performance.


L.A. COUNTY BOARD OF SUPERVISORS
2ND DISTRICT

ABOUT THE JOB:

The position is one of only five seats on the county Board of Supervisors, who collectively oversee a $30 billion annual budget. That budget pays for everything from mental health treatment to homeless services, public health to law enforcement. Like other supervisorial districts, the 2nd District is enormous. It stretches from Culver City to the USC campus and down to Compton and Carson, covering most of South L.A.. It’s home to about 2 million people (larger than many U.S. states), and about half of L.A.’s Black population.

Term: 4 Years

Can Help You With: County Benefits, County Section 8, Medi-Cal, Street Cleaning, Trash Pick-Up,  and Tree Trimming if you’re in unincorporated Los Angeles County.
Cannot Help You With: City of Los Angeles Section 8, Unemployment Benefits, Social Security, Your DWP Bill but maybe Your SoCal Edison if you’re Unincorporated Los Angeles County.

Herb Wesson

NOTE: I work for Herb Wesson.  Because I work for Mr. Wesson, I know him a little bit better than most and feel confident in supporting his candidacy for this office.  This is NOT a knock on Senator Holly Mitchell who I respect and admire.  However, that said, Mr. Wesson did not pay me for this endorsement or expect that he already had it.  In the primary, I endorsed both Mr, Wesson, former Councilmember Jan Perry, and Senator Holly Mitchell because, at that time, I felt that was the right thing to do.  I don’t think Mr. Wesson was too happy about it but he respected my decision as indicated by the fact that I still had a job after the election. For the General Election, I am throwing all of my support behind Mr. Wesson.


SUPERIOR COURT JUDGE

ABOUT THE JOB:

The Superior Court of California, County of Los Angeles, is the California superior court with jurisdiction over Los Angeles County, which includes the city of Los Angeles. It is the largest single unified trial court in the United States.

The Los Angeles Superior Court operates 47 courthouses throughout the county. As of 2019, the Presiding Judge is Kevin C. Brazile. With 5,400 employees and an annual budget of $769.5 million, the superior court operates nearly 600 courtrooms throughout the county.

Once elected, the Presiding Judge picks where a new judge is assigned to–criminal or civil court.

The court has 2.7 million new cases each year:

  • 1.7 million traffic tickets
  • About 500,000 criminal cases
  • Nearly 120,000 family law cases
  • Over 150,000 civil lawsuits

Every two years, judicial elections are on the ballot. Voters are usually unfamiliar with the candidates and are often unsure where to go for more information. In some communities, candidates are picked based on whether their surname sounds Black or is Hispanic.

The governor fills the vast majority of Superior Court vacancies, but if a seat opens up within a particular statutory (required) time frame and the governor doesn’t fill it, the job falls to the voters. Also, challengers can run against a sitting judge whose six-year term is up.

Knowing that voters have little information, the candidates make their best pitches through their three-word ballot designations. 

With all things, criminal justice under intense scrutinization, gone are the days of ignoring the names of people running for judge.  Understanding the role that judges play in today’s criminal justice system, it is critical that voters take an active role in getting to know exactly who is running for judge.

Oftentimes we never hear from the people running for judge again once they are elected to the bench and the only time you see them again is if you’re a party in their courtroom.

Term: 6 Years

Can Help You With: Going to jail or prison, getting justice, a divorce, a restraining order, child custody issues, paying fines
Cannot Help You With: Just about anything else

Required Reading: White Judicial Candidate Mansplains to Black Women

Myanna Dellinger Klint James McKay David Diamond
Myanna Dellinger

Office No. 72

Klint James McKay

Office No. 80

David D. Diamond

Office No. 162

NOTE: I do not support prosecutors running for judge. That’s just asking for more of the same and helps cultivate a criminal justice system that sees prosecutors working hand in hand with their former colleagues who are now the judge.


L.A. COUNTY BALLOT MEASURES

WHAT THEY ARE:

A local ballot measure is a piece of proposed legislation to be approved or rejected by eligible voters in a specific city or county. Ballot measures are also known as “propositions” or simply “questions”. Depending on the type of ballot measure it may require a simple majority or two-thirds vote. Local ballot measures can be placed on the ballot either by a local governing body (city council, Board of Supervisors, school district) or via a petition signed by registered voters in that city or county. Amending the county’s charter, a document that outlines how a city or county is governed takes voter approval.

J YES

Shift L.A. County Spending from Punishment to Treatment

In unprecedented times, we need structural change. Re-Imagine L.A. County is a coalition of advocates, community organizations, and neighbors supporting Measure J to prioritize health, housing, and jobs.

For decades, L.A. County’s budget has directed money away from Black, Brown, and low-income communities and allocated it in ways that negatively impact these same communities.

RR YES Repair and Renovate LA Schools

Vote YES on Measure RR to upgrade, modernize and replace aging school facilities, update technology, and address inequities in our children’s schools.

Measure RR is subject to strict independent oversight and accountability requirements, including annual independent financial and performance audits. Funds are legally restricted from being used for teacher and administrator salaries and school operating expenses.

Measure RR simply extends WITHOUT increasing the tax rate currently authorized for voter-approved Los Angeles Unified School District bonds. And it will create thousands of jobs benefitting the region’s economy.


LOS ANGELES COMMUNITY COLLEGE DISTRICT

ABOUT THE JOB:

The LACCD Board of Trustees is an independent policy-making body that bears primary responsibility for the fulfillment of the District‘s stated mission. It exercises oversight of the colleges’ educational programs and guarantees the colleges’ fiscal integrity and financial health.

Term: 4 Years

Charnè Tunson
Seat No. 1

Anthony Danna
Seat No. 3

Nichelle Henderson
Seat No. 5

Arturo Flores
Seat No. 7

Raquel Watts
Seat No. 7

NOTE: Scott Svonkin has got to go.  Besides taking money from Ed Buck and not returning it back to the victim’s fund for justice, he’s anti-woman, anti-Black, misogynistic, and has a terrible temper when you don’t say or do what he wants.  Not the type of qualities I want in a leader of our community college system.  Add to that, he’s been there a long time with absolutely nothing to show for it except for his paychecks.  Like Too Short said, it’s time to go.


WATER REPLENISHMENT DISTRICT
OF SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

ABOUT THE JOB:

The regional water agency manages groundwater for nearly 4 million residents in 43 cities throughout southern Los Angeles County and charges annual assessments to cities and property-owning entities for replenishing underground aquifers.

Term: 4 Years

Leticia Vasquz-Wilson
Leticia Vasquez-Wilson

Seat 5

Bellflower, Carson, Compton, Downey, La Habra Heights,
Norwalk, Paramount, Pico Rivera, Santa Fe Springs, Whittier


OTHER RACES I’M WATCHING

This list will be updated as needed.

Carson City Council

Jawane Hilton**
Albert Robles, Mayor
Brandi Williams-Murdock**

Compton Community College District Trustee Area 2

Barbara Calhoun

Fontana City Council

Amy Malone, District 3**

NOTE: I am proud of my girl Amy. We’ve known each other it seems like forever and I was pleased to support her when she announced her first run for public office. Congrats Amy!

L.A. City Council

Mark Ridley-Thomas , 10th District

NOTE: I am switching my support to Mark Ridley-Thomas after I learned some things about Grace Yoo that didn’t sit right with me concerning Black people and homeless people.  That said, I still do not agree that Mr. Ridley-Thomas should be eligible to run for an office he occupied for 12 years previously in a different district because of a loophole.  That’s absurd and you can run for mayor as a former councilmember.  Running as a current councilmember doesn’t make you more electable.  We’re not dumb.

West Hollywood City Council

Anyone but John Duran, click here for why.

**Indicates a campaign or candidate I donated to or I worked on their campaign.

If you’re a candidate running for office and want to be considered by Jasmyne for endorsement, please send her an email by clicking here.

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