Leaving London: San Francisco’s Voters Abandoning Mayor London Breed
By Richie Greenberg
A just-released poll of San Francisco voters reveals Mayor London Breed has failed to learn from lessons of last year’s several elected officials’ recalls due to crime, diminished quality of life, lack of accountability and failing education for our children.
An astounding 76% of those polled feel City Hall continues in the wrong direction. (Poll at SFStandard.com ). Last year, a poll rated Breed at only 17% approval by 18–34-year-olds. Another recent poll has Breed at nearly 60% unfavorable and disapproving of the job she is doing. With these poll numbers, it is looking unlikely she will be re-elected.
Don’t get me wrong, London Breed was the strongest and considered the most moderate of eight candidates in the June 2018 special election to succeed just-deceased mayor Ed Lee. I ultimately supported her policies for several years following. I defended her publicly, especially as she faced pressure from left-wing officials and activists in city hall. But then COVID happened.
Initially, Breed, together with Grant Colfax of the San Francisco Department of Health, held daily emergency COVID briefings and issued stay-at-home orders early in 2020, orders which appeared logical, science-driven and in the best interests of San Franciscans. As time went on, however, cracks began to show as hardline policy dragged on amid uneven application of lockdown regulations. Breed was twice discovered violating her own mandates, dining at the posh and intimate French Laundry restaurant, and later dancing at local SF jazz club. She also received stern condemnation for her constitutional violation over her policies on local religious service restrictions, a warning sent her by U.S. Department of Justice in September of 2020.
The roller coaster of lockdowns and openings up was seen as not only unfair but severely damaging to our economy. Breed could have taken a more even-handed approach and made declarations out of caution, and reason, not hysterics. Fast forward, we see the results: a collapsed economy with no turnaround on the horizon.
At the same time as COVID’s inception, then-incoming “District Attorney” Chesa Boudin threw a monkey wrench into the city’s criminal justice system in 2020. Amid a series of high-profile cases and his promise to release repeat criminals and to allow quality of life crimes to go unpunished, San Francisco descended into a scofflaw paradise. Yet, Mayor Breed remained virtually silent on Chesa Boudin, save a few comments of her disappointment. Breed has the city’s bullhorn – she could have easily used her pulpit to demand accountability, but she chose not to.
Once Boudin was recalled and an actual prosecutor was named as his successor (Brooke Jenkins), Breed had the chance to hit the ground running with meaningful change, to rein in crime and drug dealing. But this was wishful thinking. With a series of blundered “declarations of emergency” in the Tenderloin, on drug dealing, and most recently calling in federal and state law enforcement, it’s very puzzling why the mayor makes these toothless decrees which only fade away as ineffective. Voters laugh with each new directive – she’s just crying wolf.
And now, along with her failure to impose accountability on crime, her failure to effectively correct a steepening loss of morale among SFPD officers, her failing to push back against a radical Police Commission and worsening fallout from businesses fleeing the City, comes the Reparations issue.
During the summer of 2020, amid COVID lockdowns, the George Floyd killing, Black Lives Matter protests and Defund the Police movement, Mayor Breed decided it was time to exploit sentiment. She pulled $120 million of SFPD budget money, redirecting it to several agencies, departments and projects such as the Dream Keeper Initiative. Another project was to form a Reparations Committee to create provisions and policy proposals culminating in the now-infamous plan we have heard so much heard about to our dismay. Reparations is yet another failed undertaking eliciting near-universal condemnation from our city’s residents and businesses. (A website has been set up by yours truly detailing the horrendously unworkable plan at RejectThePlan.com )
Mayor London Breed has failed San Francisco repeatedly. Our city needs unity. We need respect. We need City Hall to reverse it’s anti-accountability, anti-public safety, anti-law enforcement and anti-business stance. We need moderation, to enforce laws, remove drug dealers and give taxpayers meaningful relief. Breed is facing a taxpayer revolt and her re-election in the fall of 2024 has been seriously thrown in doubt. It’s time to leave London and support a true moderate candidate to lead San Francisco.
Richie Greenberg is a 21-year resident of San Francisco, a political commentator, former candidate for mayor and chairman of City Hall Watch. For more information, go to Richiegreenberg.org. Twitter: @richieSF2016.
Hella funny Richie. You only recently falsely lambasted your political opponents as extreme when they were actually serving their constituents, while supporting the moderates who were supposed to be backing London Breed.
But politicians gonna politician, and after reading the tea leaves the closet republicans like yourself realize that mayor Breed is just incompetent and are looking to rebrand moderate politics with what you always believe regardless of the circumstances. Pardon my metaphors, but you are a hammer that only sees nails who doesn’t understand how to use a screwdriver because it’s always ice cream all the time.
I agree it’s time to remove Breed, but you ain’t the candidate. You have no experience in government whatsoever and your only claim is writing rhetorically bad political commentary. There is not much insight or novel in anything you write. If anything, you will just pull votes from the actual moderate candidates.
Or as they say in the hood, good luck with that.