Election Scandals

So the Trib’s story about Mario Juarez getting his windows smashed irritated me. One, why was there no mention of the security camera footage of the vandalism? Ignacio got 8 cameras installed on that stretch of International, including one on Mario’s office (because he’d had his windows smashed twice). What did it show? Two, why no mention of the fact that Ignacio’s office windows smashed in earlier in the campaign? The story was very one-sided.

Oh, and in case people missed it, Novometro had a story on Friday about a public ethics complaint filed against Nancy Nadel for violations of the Campaign Reform Act. Nadel’s donate page on her website solicits donations in excess of the maximum allowable contribution, and until the day after the ethics complaint was filed, did not include the legally required notice stating what the contribution limits are. Nice.

In other news, A Better Oakland turns one year old today.

25 thoughts on “Election Scandals

  1. Sergio Martinez

    Mario has had his windows smashed in repeatedly since very soon after opening his store there. That’s why they installed the cameras there to begin with, from what I just learned. All other businesses along International DO NOT get their windows smashed in. Mario is the only one, and it happens often. Why?

    Like I said before, I knew Mario Juarez in High School, at Fremont High. He was always the kid getting beat up by other kids because he would antogonize people (not that I condone this). This is true. Even back then, he would have a smart mouth on him, threatening people, acting like he was smarter than everyone. He hasn’t changed a bit. People like Jose Arredondo, previous director of the Citizen’s Foundation and others felt sorry for Mario and they tried to help him, but they didn’t see what we saw. He was always so pompous.

    The reason this election has taken such a negative turn in District 5 is the same reason Mario has so many lawsuits, the same reason he got beat up a lot in High School, the same reason probably that the anti-Mario website http://www.TheRealMarioJuarez.wordpress.com was created, the reason why the DA is invetigating him, why some of his employees are going after him, the reason why the city sued him…because he is just NOT a good person. We all hoped better things for Mario, but let’s face it: you know a person by the trail he leaves behind him.

    Want to know Mario, look at his past.


  2. Max Allstadt

    Happy birthday, V!

    About Ignacio and Mario’s windows: It’s increasingly obvious that what’s going on here is that both of these guys have enemies. That’s it. Neither of them is sending goons to smash windows. Neither is stupid enough to risk that. What we’ve got here is self-motivated douchebagery.

    Re: Nadel. Her donation page still isn’t fixed. The legal mumbojumbo has been added like you say, but the site still asks for a $1000 donation as the first option you can choose. What happens if we find out people have been actually donating that amount? What’s the consequence? This is abhorantly messed up.

  3. Max Allstadt

    OK, I just got curious and checked Sean Sullivan’s donation page. Here’s what I found:

    1. Sullivan and Nadel are using the same fundraising site to collect money: clickandpledge.com

    2. Nadel’s site offers $1000 as the first option. You can type any number you want into the “other amount” box. By any number I mean ANY number, no limit.

    3. Sullivan’s fundraising page, again, hosted by the SAME service, will not accept over $600. I typed $1000 in the “other amount” box. The site gave me a warning that $600 is the maximum amount, and auto-erased the “other amount” box.

  4. Max Allstadt

    Oops, I take back what I said about “no limit” on Nancy’s donation site. I found the limit. (drumroll):

    You cannot pledge to Nancy Nadel in any amount in excess of $99,999,999,999.00.

  5. V Smoothe Post author

    Nadel apparently claimed, when questioned, that the $1000 button is for PACs. This is ridiculous for two reasons 1. How often do PACs run around making online donations? They write you big checks. Not that there are very many of them in Oakland anyway. 2. The page asks you to repeat your payments, so she’s still, even after she claims to have fixed her page, actively soliciting contributions over any allowed amount, including the PAC amount.

    Also, even after she claims to have added the notice, when you click on the donate button from the front page of her website, it still sends you directly to Click & Pledge, without ever showing you the notice about the limits and restrictions on contributions. It’s really, really bad. You might be able to view something like that as an innocent mistake from a political newcomer (although every single other candidate running for office is complying), but from someone on her fifth election in Oakland and third in four years, there is absolutely no excuse. Especially someone who bills herself as the “conscience of the Council.”

  6. Max Allstadt

    So how does the ethics complaint work? What are the consequences? Can she be forced to reveal her clickandpledge account data? How long does it take to get an answer or results?

    And should this be a topic for discussion at open forum in council chambers?

  7. V Smoothe Post author

    The Public Ethics Commission hears the complaint after staff has prepared a report investigation the complaint, then decides for themselves what the consequences are. Nothing will happen with this before the election, and the likely outcome is that they will decide that since she fixed the problem after the complaint was filed (even though she actually didn’t), there should be no penalty.

    I would say it’s unlikely that someone has given her $1000 or more, mostly because people around here just don’t make donations like that, but the act is very clear about what the rules for soliciting contributions are, and she was, and is continuing to violate them.

  8. Max Allstadt

    Hopefully anybody who’d give a donation online for any significant amount would know already that $600 was the max.

    Still, if the site itself has $1000 as an option, it’s plausible that a donor with deep pockets could mistakenly take $1000 to be the limit, and fork it over accordingly. That’s why we need to see the records. Even if it happened once, that $400 is a whole extra mailer or a precinct’s worth of flyers that she shouldn’t get. This race looks close enough that something like that matters.

    very very not ok.

  9. dto510

    Max, $400 doesn’t buy a mailer. More like $4000. $400 could pay for several hours of precinct-walking if there aren’t enough volunteers. The contributions will be revealed May 22, but I think the real take-away lesson here is that Nadel simply doesn’t care about complying with the law, and is running a lazy and sloppy campaign.

    I agree that the race is very close, though. Everything will matter.

  10. RyanC

    Sergio –

    Does any one really believe that Ignacio is a better person than Mario?

    Does any one believe that a person that raises a rapist is a good person? That most experts would agree that a child becomes a dangerous predator because he learns that behavior from his parents.

    What was the first thing Jr. said to the arresting officers after he was confronted with the charges? Do you know who I am? Apparently they did. And they charged him with raping a 15 year girl.

    Did you know that Jr. was arrested as a minor numerous times and never prosecuted? Did Daddy help him?


  11. V Smoothe Post author

    Well, I will certainly stand up and say that to the extent on can make those sorts of judgements, I believe Ignacio is a better person than Mario. I have no idea whether or not Ignacio was a good parent, but I have personally known families of rapists and murderers, and can attest that those people were loved, raised in good homes and taught good values, which they choose to disregard. I do not hold people responsible for the behavior of their adult children.

    I have said before that I want the discussion on this blog to remain focused on performance and issues, not random personal attacks.

  12. dto510

    RyanC, your comments are way out of line. I am disgusted by Mario Juarez’s supporters nasty, dirty campaigning based on ad hominem attacks – it’s a clear indication of poor moral character and a utter lack of ideas to improve the community. Let’s stick to what’s real: Juarez has been successfully sued by the City of Oakland for breach of contract, and he’s currently facing breach of contract, fraud and sexual harassment suits. Now he’s trying to blame politics for his window being broken when his windows have been broken repeatedly long before he ever ran for Council. That’s why Ignacio installed surveillance cameras on his windows. Hopefully we can use those cameras to catch whoever smashed the windows. If only there were cameras on the windows of Ignacio’s campaign office when they were smashed a month ago.

    The desperation and dirtiness of Juarez’s campaign reflects extremely poorly on the groups that endorsed him, mostly public-employee unions who want compliant and fiscally irresponsible councilmembers.

  13. Becks

    Happy birthday! I really think this blog is making Oakland a better place to live in. It’s refreshing to be able to read in depth reporting about city politics, especially about the issues that are largely ignored by the MSM.

    Thanks for keeping at it, even amidst attacks by commenters. I hope you always keep in mind that there are many more of us that appreciate what you do.

  14. Margo

    Has anybody seen the new mailer from Nancy?. Incredible! she is taking credit for things that she opposed as well as did nothing to help or that are a disaster

    Example 1. the Campbell Village Teen Center. She doesn’t doesn’t brag about that when she is in the Lower Bottom neighborhood because everybody knows it is overrun with drug dealers and thugs and Nancy doesn’t do anything about it. Local prents shun the place.

    Example 2. Loma Prieto Park was a public art competition with funds from CalTrans. Nancy had NOTHING TO DO WITH IT. Ellen Wyrick led the drive to get CalTrans to put aside those funds way back just after the earthquake.

    Example 3. Nancy had nothing to do with establishing the Credit Union. It was the WOPAC that put in the critial funds.

    Example 4. She had nothing to do with Mandela Parkway. A citizens committee of Stef Parrott, Bruce Beasly and Ellen Wyric put in all the work on that…. no help from Nancy.

    It is shocking that she is taking credit for the things that others have done without her help.


  15. JohnJ


    You are right. She is also taking credit for the parking permits in Jack London Sq. It took 4 years of hard work and she was no help.

    The biggest joke is her trying to sound like she is concerned about public safety and trying to get more police. No one has been more anti police than Nancy in the history of the council.


  16. oaklandtruth

    Miguel from May 4th post:

    What evidence do you have of Mario being arrested for driving without a license multiple times?


  17. Max Allstadt

    It is Tuesday, May 13. Nadel’s campaign was alerted to the illegality of their clickandpledge page on Thursday, May 8.

    6 days. No corrective action. How much time does it take to fix a small webpage bug?

  18. Max Allstadt

    It is Wednesday, May 14th. Nadel’s site still accepts donations over the legal amount. The large “Donate” button still links to the pledge page without ever showing the user the legally required verbiage.

    I’m going to keep updating this until it’s fixed.

  19. Joanna/OnTheGoJo

    I dare say that she’s probably looking for someone with technical skills…

  20. Max Allstadt

    Nadel is still violating donation rules! It is Thursday, May 15th. Nadel’s site still accepts donations over the legal amount. The large “Donate” button still links to the pledge page without ever showing the user the legally required verbiage.

    Again, I’m going to keep updating this until it’s fixed. It’s been a week.

  21. Barry

    Re to the dog park at Mosswood: she didn’t block it. That’s about all she can take credit for.

    It was paid out of a completely different non-City council fund and exists because of the unwavering efforts of neighborhood activist from DISTRICT 2 Seth Katz and a resourceful Parks Department.

    She did appear at the opening ceremonies and said into the microphone that it was good that Oakland was creating dog parks ” to keep dogs away from people like me who are afraid of them.”

    She hasn’t broken the news to the Lake Merritt dog owners that she pissed away her District 3 promised pay-go monies on empty building in West Oakland that MIGHT be a teen center if she can ever hustle enough money to re-hab the damned thing.

    And she has the nerve to pose with a dog on her campaign literature.

    ….’way to run ahead of a parade. Who would have thought posing with Fido would replace the archetypal campaign photo of a politico kissing a baby?

    Smart move, in a city with more households with dogs that households with kids.

    Smart like a fox.

    No offense to struggling canines in the wilds.

  22. Max Allstadt

    Nadel is still violating donation rules! It is Friday, May 16th. Nadel’s site still accepts donations over the legal amount. The large “Donate” button still links to the pledge page without ever showing the user the legally required verbiage.

    Again, I’m going to keep updating this until it’s fixed. It’s been a week.