Sunday, September 16, 2012

Brad Sherman for Congress

Brad Sherman for Congress
Two incumbent Democrats are fighting each other in the newly-tailored 30th Congressional District of the San Fernando Valley. I am grateful for the Electoral Commission's efforts to force incumbent infighting, necessary to keeping our Congressmen accountable to their constituents, their districts, and the country.

Howard Berman has commandeered the larger number of endorsements from the Democratic Party, including California's two Senators, and now even Republican senators John McCain and Lindsey Graham are stepping in with endorsements for the embattled incumbent.

However, Brad Sherman will not give up the fight. Berman vs. Sherman -- where's Pee-Wee Herman?  I know this election’s secret word, too: anti—incumbent.

If I had to choose between Berman and Sherman, I do not think that I would sit out the vote, that's for sure. Even a dedicated Republican or Independent can find something to support between the two of these two politicians who are as liberal as the day is long.

Howard Berman has a power broker-brother, Michael, who according to LA Weekly has been pulling the levers of redistricting power at the state level, protecting his brother Howard's extended stay in Congress, which looks as if it is going to end very soon.

I hold no grudges against long-standing politicians, provided that their votes serve the greater good. Sadly, aside from his advocacy for Israel, Berman has been a lock-step support for the progressive left in Congress for three decades, and has faced only token opposition.

The easy ride ends today. Brad Sherman has a home-court advantage in the new district, in part because the non-partisan redistricting commission put 50% of his constituents in the new district, while only one-fourth of Berman's district wound up on the new 30th.

If I had to choose between the two, I would support Sherman. He has less seniority, which will slow his rise in the ranks in Congress. He also voted against the TARP bailout, a horrendous misuse of state power and taxpayer funds.

The Republicans have lost the two-tier spots, but that does not mean that the Republicans cannot force an expensive general election fight, which will exhaust the liberal establishment and assist GOP races in other parts of the state and the country where the Republicans are certain not only to maintain their hold but expand their power in Congress, both among establishment and Tea Party Republicans.

Even The Jewish Journal has gotten into the fray. For the past year and a half, the Journal has been covering the Berman-Sherman tussle which is breaking out in Sherman Oaks. I was impressed with the collage in early August of well-known Los Angeles Jews that graced the cover the Journal. Yet I noticed that Howard Berman was prominently placed on the cover of the July 25 issue , but not one picture of Brad Sherman. How could the cover editor have failed to include the second candidate of that contentious race in the cover of the magazine?

As a conservative living in the South Bay’s 33rd Congressional District, I am glad that Sherman is polling ahead of the Berman in the 30th Congressional District. The California Citizens Redistricting Commission has accomplished exactly what the voters wanted: ending the hegemony of entrenched politicians choosing their districts. Now every politician must appeal to all voters, regardless of party -- a practice which Berman seems to disdain, as much as his “other” half Henry Waxman.

Berman and Sherman may vote 90% of the time with their party, but Sherman voted against TARP (whether for selfish or altruistic reasons, I am glad that someone refused to bail out the banks.)

Indeed, more independent legislators are needed in Congress, and if Brad Sherman is willing to follow the spirit of reform-minded Californians who want legislators to respond to their needs and respect their rights as opposed to voting with their party and their own limited interests, then he deserves to win the seat in the 30th Congressional District.

I mince no words on this matter: I would prefer a tried-and-true conservative, but since Ms. Susan Shelley did not win one of the top-two spots after the June 6 primary, I would be willing to settle for the candidate who has more freedom, who is willing to reach out across party lines and honor every voter in his district, regardless of their party affiliation.

There are no incumbents in the currently redistricted congressional districts, despite Berman’s protest that he is the incumbent. Congressman Henry Waxman is another incumbent, yet their long-standing tenure has created a machine which is contrary to the best interests of the state and the country.

I support Sherman because he is bringing down Berman, and all the machine politics that he represents, including the Berman-Waxman phalanx, which up until this election has been propping up other Democratic candidates in the region. To see both Berman and Waxman thrown out office would be a huge step toward returning power back to the voters in Southern California.

To Sherman Oaks voters, on November 6th, end the Waxman-Berman machine! Vote for Brad Sherman for the 30th and support Bill Bloomfield for the 33rd.

1 comment:

  1. You are off on this on almost every count. Darrell Issa who was the main member who worked against Tarp has said Sherman had nothing to do with stopping it and used his position as chair of the subcommittee studying our banking system to kill every reform he tried to get passed. On the other hand, he says Berman consistently reaches across party lines on both domestic and foreign issues. Berman has also consistently supported maintaining access for religious groups to government funded programs which his opponent has opposed. Both are liberals. But as virtually every Republican who has served with them says, Berman is by far the better choice. Also Sherman will be there longer if he wins and he is an ally of Tom Hayden, so you can expect him to help similar lefties in the future.