JN - Return of Meth Advocate Ellen Taylor


Ignorant Little Snots

(NOV. 18, 2010)


At Mattole School in Petrolia this election season, the 5th through 8th graders spent a couple of weeks discussing the various propositions. According to my grandson, there was strong opposition to Proposition 19, and at the school ballot box it got only three votes (“Prop. 19, R.I.P.” Nov. 11).

Assuming these children reflect their parents it is hard not to feel cynical and sad. The War on Drugs is as destructive as our other wars, a murderously violent security policy intended to create the right environment for resource extraction and corporate exploitation. Domestically it is the modern version of Jim Crow.

These happily oblivious families might as well be voting for war because they work in the armaments business. They’ve evidently forgotten neighbors whose lives were mutilated by brutal arrests and desperate legal proceedings. They need go no farther than Eureka to encounter people who’ve emerged from long prison sentences in debt, blackballed from employment and living in fear of being thrown back in prison again for a trifle.

All arguments against Prop. 19 are casuistry, and its defeat has no silver lining.


Happy Trails and KHUM candidate interviews


http://khum.streamguys.us/HT-10-19-10.mp3 LISTEN TO Cliff Berkowitz and Jen Rice

"...intrigued to be listening to your interview with Allison Jackson - of course, especially the part that we've spent a lot of time talking about on this show talking about, which was the Greg Jennings case, and how she felt about that which was consistent with what other attorney's that I and we have, a bigger group of interested cyclists have, spent a lot of time talking to...

Interesting to me, from the other attorney's I talked to - they also felt it was the judge's job to determine whether this was a scenario of gross negligence...

Very strange that you would go to a hearing without talking to witnesses and the CHP Officer - when we were there and it was a surprise to Paul when he walked in the way the CHP officer was approaching it and that was like, what 8 months later or 9 months later, maybe almost a year later...

We were having those meetings and the first thing we would get from him, is you would walk in the room and say "Just so you know, it is not against the law to hit and kill a bicyclist." It really clarified for us how he was approaching the case...

...Back in 2005 a gentleman was hit from behind, and, on Myrtle Avenue, and we met with Paul and it was the same, I have the notes in the same note pad I have from meeting with attorneys in the Jennings case...

...and it was the same approach that Paul Gallegos had back in 2005, and we were all really frustrated with that....

I don't want to see the legal system (FAIL) screw us or not look for those opportunities to treat us justly and prosecute within the fullest extent of the law...

Equal Time-A-Palooza on KHUM


accomplishment you're most proud of: ...most proud of our work on Skilled Healthcare... can't believe we've done so much work... there's so-o-o much work... one thing I've never been big on, its self promotion... (defends his handling of the Jennings case)

http://khum.com/equaltime-a-palooza other candidate interviews

Prior Gallegos interview:
http://www.votelocalcontrol.org/gallegos.htm on Measure T
http://khum.streamguys.us/John_Matthews_KSLG-Paul_Gallegos091510.mp3 30 minute podcast
You gotta listen to the whole thing.

Eye - Jeff Schwartz: Paul Gallegos Is The Only Logical Alternative For Hagen Supporters

Jeff Schwartz: Paul Gallegos Is The Only Logical Alternative For Hagen Supporters – October 23, 2010
yougofree.com's apocalyptic screed prompted Paul Hagen's response and Natalynne DeLapp's meltdown.

What does Pat Higgins have to do with Hagen, Gallegos and the DA race? When Higgins lost the June primary election to Patrick Cleary I was very disappointed because I was a compassionate supporter of Pat Higgins. The next day I became a strong supporter of Patrick Cleary and have not looked back.

Why? Because Cleary, while not my first choice, has some of the same progressive interests, goals and values as Pat Higgins. Ryan Sundberg has none. If I and all the other Higgins voters stand their ground and refuse to vote for Cleary then the conservative candidate wins and puts us on a path back to the dark ages of Humboldt County.

It is very much the same for the Gallegos/Jackson race. Gallegos might not be the progressive candidate you wanted, but he is a progressive candidate. Allison Jackson and her supporters will eviscerate all of the progressive gains over the last dozen years. If we also lose the Neely/Bass and Sundberg/Cleary races, forget about it.

Hagen supporters need to vote for Paul Gallegos in this election. If not, you risk putting back into power those same people who supported clear-cutting our forests, overfishing our waters, and polluting our land. You fought hard for many years to transform Humboldt County from a place where politicians begged for nuclear plants and accepted the likes of Maxxam Corp and Charles Hurwitz. Right now because of the old guard who cared little about the environment, we have a dismantled PG&E nuclear plant that sits on the edge of Humboldt Bay; nuclear rods float in a vat of liquid as they wait to be buried where they stand at the intersection of three tectonic plates. We have an old electric generating plant so radioactive we can’t get rid of it. I don’t need to mention what happened to Pacific Lumber when Charles Hurwitz was welcomed with open arms.

It was the likes of Tim McKay and Greg King of Northcoast Environmental Center (NEC), and land preservationists such as Alex Stillman, Mark Lovelace, Arcata’s Mark Andre and others like Chris Kerrigan, Larry Glass and the list goes on and on that changed our landscape from nuclear power plants and mega-stores to bicycle lanes and community forests; and; yes, Paul Hagen and Paul Gallegos who challenged the old guard to clean up their environmental disasters.

Since 2001, huge strides have been made to move us away from the we-want-your-nuclear-plant crowd to the majority of us who want to protect our environment, clean up our polluted waters and bring egalitarian principles to everyone.

The countywide district attorney race is the focal point in continuing a steady forward thinking community. Gallegos enforces environmental laws and prosecutes bad business practices. Whether he gets a conviction or not, the abusers know he’ll go after them, and they will pause. If the conservative opponent wins, the Humboldt County environment and much more goes down the drain.

Environmental and business crimes are not in Allison Jackson’s vocabulary. At the last debate, the conservative candidate scoffed at Paul Gallegos for going after a national corporation (Skilled Nursing) that was running nursing homes in deplorable conditions abusing our most vulnerable citizens, the elderly, mentally ill and disabled. He won the case and brought a million bucks into the coffers of Humboldt County.

I ask, I implore, I beg those progressive leaders who supported Paul Hagen to endorse Paul Gallegos. I ask all of you Hagen voters out to vote for Gallegos even if he was not your first choice. Staying home or not filling in the square because you did not get exactly who wanted will only put us on a path you don’t want to go down. You can bet on it that the nuclear-plant crowd will stick together and take Humboldt County back to the dark ages.

Jeffrey Schwartz is an Arcata attorney. He can be reached at jdsarcata@gmail.com.

Tags: Gallegos, Jackson

This entry was posted on Saturday, October 23rd, 2010 at 9:33 am and is filed under Election 2010, Opinion. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

TS - Work with me to rebuild our District Attorney's Office (Allison Jackson's My Word)

Work with me to rebuild our District Attorney's Office

In 2003, the year Paul Gallegos began his first term as district attorney, the Department of Justice reported 394 violent crimes in Humboldt County. If that seems like a lot, fast-forward to 2009 when that number had risen to 541 -- an increase of 37 percent. During that same period, the overall rate for violent crime in the state declined by almost 20 percent.

But I want to talk about something more than numbers. I want to tell you what this looks like on the ground.

Here's an example. In July, a man named Michael Coen was arrested for attempted murder. This was not his first brush with the law. He'd been sent to prison for eight years for an assault that left a man in a coma. This was before Gallegos was elected.

Coen was paroled in 2007, but in March 2008 was picked up for participating in a gang. No charges were filed, and instead the new offense was treated as a parole violation.

In July 2008, he was arrested for his involvement in another beating that resulted in serious injury. Again, no new charges were filed by Gallegos, and again the offense was treated as a simple parole violation. Coen was out in five months.

December 2008 found Coen arrested yet again -- this time for driving under the influence and running from the police. Gallegos charged the DUI, but then pled it down to a less serious offense. Once again, it was treated as a parole violation.

Back out on the streets in May 2009, Coen was immediately re-arrested for participating

in a gang. Again, no charges. Another parole violation; another brief stint in jail.
Coen was released again in August 2009. The following month, he assaulted two men, breaking the jaw of one man who happened to be a serviceman home on leave from Iraq.

Even though Coen was already on parole for felony assault, and even though he had five prior parole violations, Gallegos plea bargained this new case and agreed to Coen's release in November 2009.

Three months later, Coen was arrested again. The charges this time -- robbery, car-jacking, illegally possessing a weapon, and participating in a gang. The case was referred to the DA, but for some unexplained reason, it was never charged. At all. Even though the investigating officer reported Coen admitted his involvement. He remained out on the street until he was picked up a few months ago for allegedly attempting to kill a man.

This is one example. There are many more. This year alone there have been 29 felons on parole found to be in possession of firearms. The DA charged only six of those. One parolee was picked up three times for being in possession of a firearm before he was charged. That was when he was found with a loaded Glock in his waistband after being stopped by the California Highway Patrol.

This is where we are. This is what eight years of Gallegos has gotten us.

If elected as your next district attorney, I will close the revolving door of plea deals that returns violent criminals to our streets to offend again and again.

I will evaluate cases personally to make sure they are properly charged. I will prioritize cases and see that deputy prosecutors have the resources and leadership they need to succeed.

I will repair the damage done to the Victim Witness Program, and re-establish special victims programs, such as those that previously supported victims of domestic violence, sexual assault and child and elder abuse.

I will re-establish a true environmental crimes unit that addresses real issues and doesn't waste our time -- or your money -- on vanity cases and political grandstanding.

I will be accessible. People trying to contact the DA's Office will no longer get a telephone tree, a full voice-mailbox and no return call. That has gone on too long and is flatly unacceptable.

On the strength of my experience and reputation, I have earned the endorsement of law enforcement throughout Humboldt County: Sheriff's deputies, Arcata Police, Eureka Police, Fortuna Police and our correctional officers. I have the support of the current sheriffs of Humboldt, Mendocino, and Del Norte counties. They know I'll do the job to keep our community safe, and they know that when they arrest people and we can prove that they're guilty, I won't let them go.

Work with me to rebuild our District Attorney's Office. Vote Allison Jackson for district attorney. A New Day, A New DA. Thank you.

Allison Jackson, a former prosecutor, is a partner in the Harland Law Firm. For information about her campaign, visit AJforDA.com.

Gallegos Press release following Paul Hagen's expose

Guess he didn't want to answer Paul Hagen's questions:

From: Richard Salzman
Date: October 26, 2010 1:22:38 PM PDT
To: editor@times-standard.com, Independent , indie@wavecable.com, editor@redwoodtimes.com, thejack@humboldt.edu, Arcata Eye , McK Press Press
Cc: Dave Rosso , Natalynne DeLapp
Subject: Press Release


Contact Natalynne DeLapp 442.9600
Richard Salzman 822.5500

Town Hall Meeting with DA to be Rescheduled

A Town Hall meeting originally scheduled for Wednesday evening at the Eureka Women's Club, with District Attorney Paul Gallegos has been canceled due to a scheduling conflict. The sponsoring organization, Citizens for District Attorney Paul Gallegos 2010 apologizes for any inconvenience and encourages you to visit their website for updated information at VotePaul.org.


From Salzman to DeLapp.

TS - Humboldt County DA candidates continue to haul in big money

Humboldt County DA candidates continue to haul in big money

With less than a week until Election Day, the two candidates to become Humboldt County's next district attorney have combined to spend more than $300,000 on their campaigns.

Financial disclosure forms filed with the Humboldt County Elections Office -- California Form 460s -- are required to be filed with the county and list all campaign contributions of $100 or more that candidates have received, any loans they have taken and where their campaign funds have been spent.

Filings due at the elections office last week detail the candidates' finances from Oct. 1 through Oct. 16 and indicate that the two remaining district attorney candidates each raised an average of more than $1,000 a day for the filing period.

The district attorney race pits two-term incumbent Paul Gallegos against challenger Allison Jackson, who served as a deputy district attorney for 10 years before becoming a partner in Eureka's Harland Law Firm.

Jackson reported receiving more cash contributions this filing period, reporting receiving $17,728 in cash contributions to go with $165 in non-monetary contributions for a total of $17,893 in contributions received in the filing period.

Gallegos reported receiving $14,228 in cash contributions and a $10,000 loan from Jaime O'Donnell, a self-employed Trinidad construction contractor, for a total of $24,228 in cash contributions received in the filing period.

In year-to-date numbers, Gallegos has also out-raised and out-spent Jackson.

According to the filings, Gallegos has raised $160,783 to Jackson's $130,633 this year, and spent $167,261 to Jackson's $136,718.
Gallegos also leads Jackson in debt accrued, having received $46,000 in loans this year and accrued $14,809 in expenses, for a total outstanding debt of $60,809.

Jackson, on the other hand, reports having received $10,500 in loans this year with no accrued expenses.

For this filing period, Jackson reported receiving 25 donations of $100 or more, and $1,188 in donations of $100 or less. She reported receiving three donations of $1,000 or more: $1,500 from the Humboldt Builders Exchange PAC, $1,000 from Dottie Lee, who is self-employed in the field of real estate, and $8,000 from the Humboldt County Deputy Sheriffs' Organization PAC.

For the year, Jackson's largest contributors have been the Humboldt County Sheriffs' Organization PAC, which has contributed $18,000; Eel River Disposal owner Harry Hardin, who has contributed $5,825; and McKinleyville's Kenneth Quigley, who has contributed $4,015 so far this year.

Gallegos reported receiving a total of 25 donations of $1,000 or more for the filing period and $278 in contributions of $100 or less.

He reported receiving nine contributions of $1,000 or more: $1,500 from Redway's Trim Scene Solutions Inc., $1,500 from Whitethorn's Sage Koenig, and $1,000 each from Eureka's Christoph Fisher, Garberville's Kristin Nevedal, Owens Hunting Lease in Garberville, Whitethorn's Trent Sanders, Miranda's Matthew Scott, Sacramento's The Volo Group and Costa Mesa's Winter, LLP.

For the year, Gallegos' largest contributors have been attorney Jennifer Keller, who contributed $3,5000, dentist Karissa Elloway, who contributed $2,960, and Murphy's' Market owner Patrick Murphy, who has donated $2,000.

Gallegos reported spending a total of $14,960 in the filing period, with his largest expenditures going for campaign workers' salaries and print and radio advertisements. He reported finishing the filing period with an ending cash balance of $16,519.

Jackson reported spending a total of $26,732 this filing period, with her largest expenditures going for print, radio and television advertisements and campaign literature and mailers. She reported ending the filing period with $7,495 in cash on hand.

The candidates will have to file Form 460s again Jan. 31, 2011, detailing their fundraising activity from Oct. 17 through the end of the year.

Thadeus Greenson can be reached at 441-0509 or tgreenson@times-standard.com.

Thadeus Greenson can be reached at 441-0509 or tgreenson@times-standard.com.

Eye - Hagen Helping Crush Progressivism

Poor pathetic deranged Gallegos camp missive:
Natalynne DeLapp: Hagen Helping Crush Progressivism – October 28, 2010

Paul Hagen has repeatedly represented to the Humboldt County progressives that he has their best interests at heart. If that is Mr. Hagen’s goal, Mr. Hagen must know that the actions he continues to take to tear down our District Attorney, Paul Gallegos, are directly assisting Allison Jackson and the conservative movement to eviscerate Humboldt County’s progressive movement.

Paul Hagen recently sent a letter to the Arcata Eye claiming that Paul Gallegos is not an alternative now that Mr. Hagen is no longer in the running. Mr. Hagen makes many broad based and generalized attacks on Mr. Gallegos in that letter such as claiming Mr. Gallegos deliberately smeared his opponent and lied doing it. He also makes many dated and petty attacks. Even the editor of the Arcata Eye admitted that he does not believe Mr. Gallegos has engaged in this smear type behavior – recognizing the smearing has generally come from anonymous supporters for both sides.

Unfortunately, the conservative movement has been celebrating their new hero, Paul Hagen and hoping to ride the infighting among liberals to victory. Paul Hagen’s letters condemning Paul Gallegos are displayed prominently on a local blog called Watch Paul, which is the same site promoting Allison Jackson’s candidacy and filled with negative smear tactic character assassinations of Mr. Gallegos – the same type of tactics Mr. Hagen claims he abhors. The Watch Paul blog which is now posting Mr. Hagen’s articles states the following:

“The original purpose of WatchPaul is to post important documents relating to Humboldt County District Attorney Paul Gallegos and his handlers who seek to gain power through the acquisition of political offices. This includes, but is not limited to, the manipulations of “Humboldt Watershed Council,” “EPIC,” “Baykeeper,” and other activist groups – the unregulated orgs.”

In other words, Paul Hagen, whether knowingly or unwittingly, is providing “documents” about Humboldt County District Attorney Paul Gallegos that are now being used in a coordinated effort to crush our important progressive groups such as Humboldt Watershed Council, EPIC, Baykeeper, and other progressive groups.

We all hope and believe that Paul Hagen is not doing this intentionally, but the fact remains that is simply irresponsible for Paul Hagen to help tear down the progressive movement that so many of us worked so hard to create (long before Paul Hagen moved here). Mr. Hagen has privately questioned Allison Jackson’s ethics and commitments to progressive causes, but refuses to do so publicly. Why?

Paul Hagen does not like Paul Gallegos – we get that. But does he really want to spite the local progressive movement just to settle a score? In the words of scripture: When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things. 1 Cor 13.

Natalynne DeLapp
Campaign Manager
Citizens for District Attorney Paul Gallegos 2010


Tags: DeLapp, Gallegos, Hagen

This entry was posted on Wednesday, October 27th, 2010 at 8:37 pm and is filed under Election 2010, Opinion. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed.

Eye - We Need A Real District Attorney (Editorial)

Kevin Hoover: – October 30, 2010

Paul Gallegos’ listless DA Office leadership is defined mostly by constant explaining and excuse-making, a supposed law-and-order DA with an uncanny knack for letting bad actors off on technicalities.

The other salient feature of the Gallegosphere is strenuously projecting progressive-hipsterism while running a very traditional, fairly brutal politics-as-usual machine.

Any one of the infamous criminal cases which ended with wrist-tap outcomes might have a quasi-feasible rationale, but Gallegos’ record has never added up to more than typical rural mediocrity. Very, very hip though, and certainly we’re all thankful for that.

Gallegos’s DNA is that of an extremely adequate defense attorney. He’s reliably malleable and dominated by the much-stronger personalities who manage him as a figurehead, including Master Ethicist Richard Salzman and Christina Allbright. These folks provide, in turn, political brains and ideological cover for their enterprise.

That’s good for Paul, because the man can’t speak for himself. Not even intending to, John Matthews of KSLG tripped him up just by asking his stance on Prop 19.

Gallegos is voting for Prop 19, you see, but he doesn’t endorse it. All John wanted to know was why you’d vote for something you don’t endorse.

Listen to the audio clip and be mortified as you hear our county’s top courtroom talent hem and haw, squirm and weasel as he tries to address this obvious contradiction while having it both ways, and fails. kslg.com/gallegos

Can any of the passionate Gallegos supporters please translate what their candidate is trying to say? It’s easier to understand dolphins than Gallegos-speak. “How many more people have to be killed?” the DA rightly wonders, alluding to that the strife the current nonsensical cannabis laws cause. But he won’t endorse Prop 19 “for a multitude of reasons,” none of which he will name.

The elephant in the room is that Gallegos isn’t allowed to endorse Prop 19. Cannabis legalization would undermine the business interests of his major supporters, who are fully invested in the broken status quo. But like any industry-approved politician, he can’t say that, so gasping and tense silences have to do. Does it really matter that the controlling industry is Big Cannabis and not pig ranches or a chemical factory, as in other places? It’s no surprise that Humboldt’s defense attorneys are just thrilled with Paul Gallegos. He’s always been and always will be one of them.

Rap artist Tone Loc appeared at a Gallegos campaign benefit in May, resulting in this Arcata Eye cartoon by artist Dave Held (daveheld.com). Gallegos liked it so much he had it autographed.

The cannabis industry-friendliness and vacuous environmental and social justice talk are why, when you call Gallegos HQ, a young, no doubt idealistic volunteer will probably answer the phone. These folks evidently think they’re helping advance social progress or environmental ideals in some way. But what has Gallegos really accomplished over the years on any of these scores other than mouthing words? The campaign volunteers could better spend their time helping at the Food Bank, or planting trees along a creek in Arcata some weekend.

For all its well-polished Hipster Moderne image-building, Gallegos is the figurehead for a hopelessly old school political machine. It’s one which fires dissenters, hires sycophants and verbally shreds enemies. In the latest example, the campaign manager’s Eye column attempts to conflate the Gallegos brand with Progressivism itself while concern-trolling accomplished environmental prosecutor Paul Hagen as some sort of witless tool of the Right.

Inevitably, Biblical scripture is invoked to cement this point. There’s nothing cynical or manipulative about this, mind you. After all, the question just has to be posed: Does Paul Hagen challenge the Bible?

It’s funny how only soulless monsters ever speak out against such a pleasant fellow as Paul Gallegos. Remember when dapper gentleman Worth Dikeman turned out to be a cop-lover and a racist? Now Allison Jackson is a drunken rageclown and enemy of civil rights. “We have to defeat the fascist,” said one frightened Gallegos supporter. Another one spoke with conviction that Paul Hagen is a “spy,” because he is seen at some of the same public events that person attended. So many enemies.

Given this progression, and with the Gallegos campaign’s newfound affinity for the Bible in mind, one can scarcely imagine what kind of morally bereft Spawn of Satan his next opponent would inevitably turn out to be four years hence. Happens every time.

It’s hard to envision Paul Gallegos masterminding the systematic discrediting of all opponents that marks his campaigns (or masterminding much of anything else, for that matter). For this kind of wet work, he has people.

The Gallegos campaign projects idealism and progressive values while funneling cash in the four figures to the likes of Richard Salzman. Political dialogue these days is toxic enough without this character going around throwing gasoline on it. But, as only a lying political hack can do, he’s managed to con a number of local politicians into thinking that he’s somehow essential to their political survival. ”I am completely happy with the people that I work so closely with and I trust their integrity,” says Gallegos campaign manager Natalynne DeLapp.

At this point, many of us are weary to the bone of the enduringly mediocre performance of the Humboldt County DA’s Office, and even more fatigued with the frenzied flim-flamming and fakery that strives to mask it. These features, plus the scorched-earth attacks on any who question Gallegos, are the true hallmarks of his tenure in office.

Allison Jackson will run a streamlined, no-excuses DA’s Office. If you’re innocent, resources won’t be misspent on futile prosecutions. But if you beat your wife, kill a kid, steal a purse, torture an animal, dump toxic waste, wreck a neighborhood or spew diesel into a creek with a dope factory, you’re going to jail, dude! Have a nice day.

With a real district attorney, law enforcement will have confidence that their work in putting together solid cases won’t sit around getting stale as statutes of limitation expire. I’ve had police ask me to phone the DA’s Office for them about cases, hoping the press would merit the returned call that they don’t. It’s widely known, if not accepted, that politics, not prosecutions, is the currency of the Gallegos DA’s Office.

If Jackson turns out to be just another phony politico like Gallegos, if she impinges on civil rights in any way or if she simply doesn’t live up to the campaign pledges she’s making, she had better know that people like me will be all over her. Probably with redoubled, disappointment-driven commitment, since she’s the one selling a message of relief and straight-up performance. Read this and know, Ms. Jackson: we’re looking to hire a serious attorney here, one who will work on behalf of the long-suffering citizens of Humboldt County, one who will protect the innocent, convict the guilty and protect the rights of everyone without fear or favor.

The Gallegos/Salzman franchise is the establishment – the sick, unresponsive machine whose main function is self-preservation. It has become the problem. Allison Jackson is a strong woman and compassionate attorney. She can talk. We’re so ready for that, for a positive change.

TS - Gallegos for District Attorney

Gallegos for District Attorney

We agree with the assessment of David Sklansky, faculty chair of the University of California Berkeley's Boalt School of Law's Center for Criminal Justice, that voters should think about what types of cases they want to see prioritized and how they want their district attorney to work with law enforcement agencies, and look for a candidate with a philosophy that aligns with theirs.

Current District Attorney Paul Gallegos has certainly shown lapses in judgment. His opponent, Allison Jackson, has as well. Watching their campaigns this election season, it has been abundantly clear that both candidates have played a bit fast and loose with the facts. As David Levine, a professor at the University of California Hastings School of Law, said, one would hope candidates vying for the office would play slow and tight with the facts and make a conscious effort not to distort the truth.

Neither candidate did. Here we have a tie.

But those developments have not been enough for us change the position we took in the June primary.

As we said before, we hope that Gallegos has learned his lesson about some of the decisions he made in the past, and we believe he has grown out of pursuing cases that take away from his office's primary responsibility to handle criminal cases and has grown into the role of district attorney.

He's done some great work in bringing the office into the 21st century and assembling a crack investigative team which has solved several cold

cases, including the murder of Curtis Huntzinger, bringing closure to his family.
While we have concerns about Gallegos, we also have reservations about Jackson's ability to step into the job.

She has raised legitimate issues, and her platform of ensuring victims' rights has certainly resonated with voters.

As we support a yes vote for Gallegos, we hope he's listened to concerns raised in this campaign and does more than take them under submission.

JN - I Facebook-Friended Richard Salzman into a State of Terror, and I Am Sorry

I Facebook-Friended Richard Salzman into a State of Terror, and I Am Sorry

facebook, politics, terrorism / By Hank Sims / Nov. 2, 2:43 p.m.

Journal contributor Terrence McNally writes:

I, Terrence McNally, recognizing that by several legal definitions I am a total jerkwad, hereby offer my apology to District Attorney Paul Gallegos’ political operative, Richard Salzman.

Facebook friend-request terror victim Richard Salzman.

When I received a phone call from Arcata Police Department Officer Altizer today, Nov. 2, telling me that Mr. Salzman had filed a complaint with APD, I realized that my Facebook friendship requests were undesired and that Mr. Salzman, despite his lack of response, had no desire to create a Facebook friendship relationship with me. And that despite Mr. Salzman relaying to law enforcement that I had made “annoying and harassing phone calls,” which never happened and I totally never called the guy and don’t have his phone number, I understand that this is a Facebook issue. Oh, actually I did e-mail him once, and that was terrible.

Since leaving my employment at the Arcata Eye newspaper, I have felt entirely too free to comment about issues such as the District Attorney race, which I have witnessed over some 14 years.

So when Arcata City Council Candidate Dave Meserve is promoting his mission to create a public restroom, something he bungled during his previous tenure, I was flummoxed and stated so via Facebook. And when Meserve positioned himself as the savior of the bicycle trail movement, despite the current council’s ability to create and pass, in his absence, the Arcata Pedestrian and Bicycle Master Plan, the document from which all of the city’s bike and pedestrian trails will emanate, I was too quick to complain via Facebook. And when Dave Meserve appropriated AC/DC’s font and motto, despite my complete distrust of his enthusiasm for rocking, I was too quick to judge.

Likewise, my offer to Richard Salzman to vote for his candidate, Paul Gallegos, on the condition that he accept my Facebook friendship was abusive, cruel and meanspirited (a term that seems to have gone out of style, but which I am attempting to bring back in place of the overused “douchebag,” which for some reason is back in play).

And despite Mr. Salzman’s proven track record of using the Internets unethically and for the purposes of political bullying, I now see that I have become that which I, uh… like, didn’t want to be and stuff.

And that’s bad.

So: Sorry ’bout that, Dick. I will not seek your Facebook friendship again, as it has caused you considerable emotional distress. Best of luck at the Lost Coast Brewery tonight.


Terrence McNally


TS - 'It ain't over 'til it's over': Thousands of uncounted ballots leave some Humboldt County races uncertain

'It ain't over 'til it's over': Thousands of uncounted ballots leave some Humboldt County races uncertain

The drama of Election Day has passed, the parties have been held and the initial results have been reported. But this thing is far from over.

Humboldt County Registrar of Voters Carolyn Crnich said Wednesday that almost 13,000 ballots have yet to be counted and likely won't be tabulated for two to three weeks. It's currently unknown exactly what precincts the ballots are from and what races they might affect, Crnich said.

That puts just about every race in the county mathematically in play and leaves the outcome of three especially tight races hanging in the balance.

Crnich said 5,623 vote-by-mail ballots received by the elections office prior to Tuesday have been verified but have not yet been counted. Additionally, she said 5,649 vote-by-mail ballots were received at polling locations and at the elections office counter on Tuesday. Another 1,688 provisional ballots were cast at polling locations Tuesday, Crnich said, bringing the total number of yet-to-be-counted ballots to 12,960.

Crnich said the number of provisional ballots filled out in this race was unusually high. She said she imagines it's because Humboldt State University is back in session, and many students may have moved but failed to update their voter registration since the last election they participated in. She said the majority of the provisional ballots were cast in Arcata precincts.

The elections office's first order of business moving forward will be to update the voter history

of the 29,950 people who voted at Humboldt County's polling locations on Tuesday, Crnich said.
”We have to update the voter history of those voters that went to the polls first to make sure nobody dropped off an absentee ballot at one precinct and then went to another polling location to vote again,” Crnich said, adding that checking voter histories will likely be a two-week process, after which the county can start the process of verifying signatures for the vote-by-mail ballots received on Election Day.

”We're going to crank on it as hard and as fast as we can because we know there are people out there who are very passionate about it,” Crnich said. “But I'll take accuracy over speed.”

The elections office has about 28 days before it has to release the official election canvass, and Crnich said she doesn't anticipate having updated vote totals for two to three weeks.

If all 12,960 of the remaining ballots are valid -- which is very unlikely -- it would push the county's voter turnout to 51,670, roughly 66 percent of eligible voters.

”That's huge,” Crnich said. “There were a lot of things on the ballot this time that people were really, truly passionate about, and they got to the polls to express their opinion.”

According to elections office records, 47.7 percent of the county's voters turned out for the June primary election, 80 percent of eligible voters turned out for the 2008 presidential election and 63 percent turned out in November 2006.

The outstanding ballots could represent about 25 percent of the total turnout in this election and, consequently, could sway the outcomes of some local races. Crnich said it was impossible Wednesday to say how many outstanding ballots were in play in specific races, leaving it difficult to predict how some races may play out.

The preliminary results in three high-profile races have candidates running neck-and-neck, separated by only a few percentage points. Here's a closer look at each, and at how the yet-to-be-counted ballots may turn the tide.

Humboldt County District Attorney

Early numbers Tuesday night had challenger Allison Jackson holding a commanding 16-point lead over two-term incumbent Paul Gallegos, but the lead dwindled as the night wore on until the final report showed Gallegos holding the lead.

Election night's first report -- which comprised only vote-by-mail ballots -- showed Jackson holding 58 percent of the vote. The second report -- which included mostly precincts in Eureka and surrounding areas -- showed Jackson's lead dipping to 56.4 percent. The third report -- which included Manila, Freshwater and some other areas surrounding Eureka -- brought Jackson's lead down to 53.9 percent. Report No. 4 -- which included Fortuna, McKinleyville and parts of Southern Humboldt -- showed Jackson's support had dropped to just 52.1 percent with Gallegos getting 47.6 percent of the vote, up from just 41.6 percent in the first report of the night.

The fifth and final report -- which included Arcata -- swung the tide and showed Gallegos out front with 51.3 percent of the vote to Jackson's 48.4, with 1,054 votes separating the candidates.

Crnich said the Arcata precincts reported late because at least one precinct hit some hang-ups in the end-of-night audit, delaying the delivery of all the city's precinct data to the elections office.

With some 12,960 votes still at play, it seems the district attorney's race is still wide open.

In the preliminary results, Jackson held a commanding 60-to-40 lead in vote-by-mail ballots. If those numbers hold for the vote-by-mail ballots that came in just before or on Election Day, it seems Jackson is poised to take the race.

However, Gallegos dominated the voting at the precincts Tuesday, taking 57 percent of the vote to Jackson's 42. If the late-arriving vote-by-mail ballots fall more in line with the precinct results -- as experts say they are prone to do -- Gallegos seems ready to take the election handily.

At this point, there are no clear answers.

Jackson said Wednesday that the number of outstanding ballots is “huge” and that she'll just have to wait and see how things shake out, like everybody else. Fresh off a months-long campaign, Jackson said she has plenty to do to keep herself occupied while the final ballots are tallied.

”I've got depositions (today), two trials coming up and I will be very busy,” she said.

Gallegos was not immediately available for comment Wednesday, but said Tuesday night he was looking forward to putting the campaign behind him and spending some time with his wife and his kids.

Ward 3 Eureka City Council

With more than 6,000 votes cast, Ron Kuhnel and Mike Newman are running neck and neck in the race for a seat on the Eureka City Council, with preliminary results showing them separated by 171 votes, or roughly 2.5 percent.

Newman held a commanding 7-point lead in vote-by-mail numbers, while Kuhnel got the slight edge at the precincts by taking 42.6 percent of the vote to Newman's 42 percent. Again, the uncounted ballots have the potential to swing this race in either direction. Though Kuhnel admits the odds aren't in his favor, he said he's certainly not throwing in the towel at this point.

”I'm not going to concede this election,” he said. “You could get a big surprise.”

Newman said he was approaching the situation with “guarded optimism.”

”We'll just have to wait and see how (the uncounted ballots) come out, but if they hold true to what the trend has been, I think we'll see that 2 or 3 percent margin hold,” he said.

Fortuna City Council and Rio Dell City Council

While late election results show two distinct leaders in each race, the dash for the third open seat on each council is a bit closer.

In Fortuna, Mike Losey took 23.3 percent of the vote and Sue Long 18.6 percent. They appear poised to take their seats, while the race for the third has Dean Glaser 405 votes ahead of Janelle Egger, which is statistically unlikely to change.

In Rio Dell, the two leaders -- Julie Woodall with 29.6 percent of the vote and Melissa Marks with 27.6 percent of vote -- appear to have handily won a seat. Coming in third is Richard Leo “Bud” Leonard, who holds a 29-vote lead over Mike Dunker in a spread too close to call.

5th District Humboldt County Supervisor

With almost 7,500 ballots cast, only 93 votes separate 5th District Humboldt County supervisor candidates Patrick Cleary and Ryan Sundberg in the preliminary election results, with Sundberg holding the narrow 1 percent lead.

In contrast to the district attorney race, this race showed virtually identical results in ballots cast by mail and at precincts, with Sundberg holding a 1-point lead in both. Obviously, if that pattern holds, it's Sundberg's race.

But if even a fraction of the 12,960 outstanding ballots fall within the 5th District and break from the pattern, the race could be wide open.

Sundberg wasn't immediately available for comment Wednesday.

”It's far too early to tell anything,” Cleary said. “I don't think we're going to know anything for another 30 days. ... I guess I'll fall back to Yogi Berra and say, 'It ain't over 'til it's over.'”

Thadeus Greenson can be reached at 441-0509 or tgreenson@times-standard.com.