In the latest edition of political musical chairs…
I am hearing mixed reaction on California Attorney General Kamala Harris’ announcement that she plans to run for US Senator Barbara Boxer’s seat.
A lot of people in California — namely Democrats and African-Americans — pushed and fought very hard for Harris to beat retired LA County District Attorney Steve Cooley. They wanted someone progressive in that position who was committed to seeing through the changes that many felt needed to be made. All of those changes have not been made.
In 2010 Harris ran on a progressive platform. She was openly opposed to the death penalty, supported gay marriage, championed a program that offered young people charged with non-violent crimes three month paid internships in exchange for guilty pleas–in addition to other progressive ideas as it related to the criminal justice system. In fact, one might argue that she really woke up a lot voters when it came to the importance of the Attorney General position and having a progressive like her in it.
I’m hearing some people say they’d rather have her stay in her current position where she can do more good for the people of California in pushing through the changes that she campaigned on that still have not materialized.
If she wins her bid for US Senate, we could very likely see the resurgence of a Steve Cooley for CA Attorney General campaign. In 2010, he lost 45 percent to Harris’ 46 percent.
One thing I know for sure, Cooley is no Harris and his winning would be the end of a lot of changes Californians have been fighting for as it relates to the criminal justice system.
On the other hand, I haven’t heard or read one comment from anyone excited about an Antonio Villaraigosa campaign for US Senate. Although I will say that a Harris vs. Villaraigosa battle could really put the proclaimed lovefest between Black and brown Democrats to the test.
Stay tuned…the battle lines are being drawn.