San Francisco November 2020 Voter Guide Roundup

Most of us probably know how we’ll be voting in the Presidential/Vice Presidential contest, but if you’re in California, there are many down ballot races and ballot measures that are also important. Affirmative action, the size of our police force, the regulation of dialysis clinics–it’s a lot to go through.

Here are two complementary resources that can help as you make your choices. The first is Cal Matters’ election guide. They’re a nonpartisan nonprofit that explains policy and politics, and they describe each contest in plain language. They also show whose money is backing each measure, and who endorses each candidate. See their guide here.

Cal Matters doesn’t make specific recommendations, however, so I’ve also compiled several major voter guides for San Francisco’s November 2020 election, in the moderate to progressive range. Not every organization made recommendations in every contest, but where they did, they’re gathered here:

State and Federal Races

SF ChronicleYIMBY Action SFUnited Democratic Club
President/Vice PresidentBiden/HarrisBiden/HarrisBiden/Harris
US Representative District 12Nancy Pelosi
State Senator District 11Scott WienerScott Wiener
State Assembly Member District 17David Chiu
State Assembly Member District 19Phil Ting

Education Races

SF ChronicleUnited Democratic Club
SF Board of Education (four slots)Michelle ParkerMichelle Parker
SF Board of EducationJenny LamJenny Lam
SF Board of EducationKevine BoggessAlida Fisher
SF Board of EducationAlida FisherMatt Alexander
CCSF Board of Trustees (four slots)Tom TempranoTom Temprano
CCSF Board of TrusteesJeanette QuickJeanette Quick
CCSF Board of TrusteesShanell WilliamsAliya Chisti
CCSF Board of TrusteesMarie HurabiellVictor Olivieri

California Propositions

SF ChronicleSPURIndivisible SFACLUUnited Democratic ClubYIMBY Action SF
Prop 14 – Re-Fund Stem Cell AgencyNoNoYes
Prop 15 – More frequent commercial property tax assessmentsYesYesYesYesYesYes
Prop 16 – Affirmative ActionYesYesYesYesYes
Prop 17 – Restore voting rights of former prisoners on paroleYesYesYesYesYesYes
Prop 18 – Let 17 year olds vote in primaries if they’ll be 18 before general electionYesYesYesYesYes
Prop 19 – Property Taxes, heirs, and older homeownersNoYesNoYesYes
Prop 20 – Expand list of crimes that don’t allow early releaseNoNoNoNoNo
Prop 21 – Allow local gov’ts to expand rent controlNoNoYesYes
Prop 22 – Exempt app-based drivers from gig worker employee classificationYesNoNoNo
Prop 23 – Increase state regulation of kidney dialysis clinicsNoNoYes
Prop 24 – Expand a 2018 data privacy lawNoNoNo
Prop 25 – Replace money bail with evaluation of defendant’s safetyYesYesYesYes

San Francisco Ballot Measures

SF ChronicleSPURYIMBY Action SFIndivisible SFUnited Democratic ClubLeague of Women’s Voters
Prop A – Health and Homelessness, Parks and Streets BondYesYesYesYesYesYes
Prop B – Split Public Works into two agenciesNoNoYesNo
Prop C – Allow noncitizerns to serve on city advisory boardsNoYesYesYesYesYes
Prop D – Greater oversight of Sheriff’s DepartmentYesYesYesYesYes
Prop E – Eliminate the requirement that the Police Department have 1,971 full-duty officersYesYesYesYesYesYes
Prop F – recallibrate business taxes to phase out certain taxes for some businesses and increase the number of small companies exempted from business tax.YesYesYesYesYesYes
Prop G – allow 16-17 year olds to vote in local elections.NoYesYesYesYes
Prop H – Streamline city’s permitting processes for storefrontsYesYesYesYesYes
Prop I – Increase tax on property sales over $10MNoNoYesNoYes
Prop J – a $288 parcel tax for SFUSDYesYesYesYesYesYes
Prop K – authorize SF to rehabilitate up to 10,000 units of affordable housingYesYesYesYesYesYes
Prop L – tax companies where executives earn way more than employeesNoN/AYesNo
Measure RR (SF, San Mateo, Santa Clara) – increase sales taxes by 1/8 of a cent to raise money for rail systemYesYesYesYesYesYe
Note: ACLU made one recommendation in this section, a YES for Prop G.

San Francisco Supervisors and BART Board of Directors

SF ChronicleYIMBY Action SF
SF Supervisor District 1Marjan PhilhourMarjan Philhour
SF Supervisor District 3Aaron PeskinDanny Sauter
SF Supervisor District 5Vallie BrownVallie Brown
SF Supervisor District 7Joel EngardioMyrna Melgar
SF Supervisor District 9Hillary Ronen
SF Supervisor District 11Ahsha SafaíAhsha Safaí
BART Board of Directors – District 7Lateefah Simon
BART Board of Directors – District 9Bevan Dufty

Here are other voter guides whose recommendations I didn’t compile:

And here are two organizations whose voter guides weren’t yet posted at the time when I wrote this blog post:

If you’re still stuck on a particular ballot measure or proposition, I’ve seen advice that you should vote ‘no,’ because propositions and ballot measures are hard to adjust or undo after the fact, and can have a lot of unintended consequences.

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