Jan Marx to become next mayor of San Luis Obispo

November 6, 2010

Paul Brown has conceded to Jan Marx in the close mayoral race in San Luis Obispo [Tribune]

The former city councilman originally posted Friday on Facebook that the absentee ballot counting was not going in his favor. Brown confirmed in an email Saturday that he called Marx Friday night and congratulated her.

“The difference between Jan and I is currently at 298 votes,” Brown said in the email.” “It is highly unlikely there will be a 18 percent swing in my favor in the remaining ballots to be counted.”

Once Marx is sworn in as mayor, she and fellow council members Andrew Carter, John Ashbaugh, and newly-elected Kathy Smith will have to decide how to fill the vacancy created by the election of Marx. Options include calling for a special election or appointing a new council member.

Brown, who previously served one term of the council, urged that recent candidate Dan Carpenter be appointed to the empty seat “out of respect to the voters,” noting that the race between him and returning Councilwoman Kathy Smith was so close, with just 289 votes between them.

Meanwhile, in the Morro Bay mayoral race, Bill Yates maintains a 57-vote lead over Betty Winholtz. Earlier in the week, Yates had led by 89 votes.

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Now the word on the street is that Marx is actively lobbying to appoint her friend and fellow Democratic Central Committee member Patty Andreen to her former council seat.

The Patty Andreen that managed Marx’s last campaign. The Patty Andreen who got thumped when she ran for county supervisor some years ago.

Are things supposed to work like this — political pay-back for services rendered and party affiliations met? Is the SLO City Council supposed to be THAT inbred with DCC insiders? You’re not going to get away with this one, Marx & Co…

If Marx’s replacement ends up being a product of the Democratic Central Committee, Marx and the sitting council members’ (all associated with the DCC) integrity will be pretty much shot before they even get out of the gate.

The last thing SLO needed was local politics dominated by ANY one political party. I believe it’s about to happen (Marx and crew simply don’t have character to put the voters ahead of the DCC) and I believe there will be a grave backlash…

This situation is the reason why Morro Bay voters passed a law in 2006 that requires a sitting, mid-term council person, who wants to run for mayor or any higher office (Supervisor, Assembly, Congress) to give up their seat, that way voters can choose three new council people at the election, and avoid the need to appoint someone to fill the seat.

If SLO had such a law, Marx would have been in the mayor’s race on an all-or-nothing basis, instead of having nothing to lose by running, because she still has 2 years left in her council term.

As for the appointment, I watched twice as the 3rd place candidate in the MB council election was passed over in favor of someone else. Both times I thought it was wrong. In both cases, the third place finisher lost by less than 20 votes.

If someone takes the time to throw his or her hat into the ring, they deserve consideration for appointment to fill a vacant seat. But it’ll take the people themselves to place a measure on the ballot to change this, because council members will never do it. That would mean giving up some power, and that just wouldn’t do now would it.

>>it’ll take the people themselves to place a measure on the ballot to change this, because council members will never do it

Join me.

SLO needs such a law!

I didn’t think that Marx ran from a “safe seat” in order to cover her backside but given the election results that was probably a big part of it. I simply think Marx, Ashbaugh and the rest of the Democrats on the council want to be able to appoint one of their own.

Let’s see if the new mayor and city council have the class to pass such a law.

KSBY is reporting that Paul did *not* concede the election:


There still may be hope for Paul to bring much needed balance to city politics.

This looks like the public employee unions will continue to have control in the city.

I guess we will just have to wait for the BK judge to clean things up

Voters should decide who represents us best for the next two years. The council better not appoint anyone. Especially Jan Marx who abandoned her seat mid-term — and now gets to vote for who she wants? Voters should make the choice.

“…Brown, who previously served one term of the council, urged that recent candidate Dan Carpenter be appointed to the empty seat ‘out of respect to the voters'”

Paul Brown is actually correct on this manner. The voters have spoken clearly. Dan Carpenter should be appointed to fill Marx’ former council seat but I don’t think he will be unless he’s a card-carrying member of the Democratic National Party. Has Mr. Carpenter made his political party connections known to the public?

Crusader: While I will not argue with you about Dr. John Ashbaugh being very connected to the Democratic Party in the state of California, where do you get your “facts” about Andrew Carter, Jan Marx and Kathy Smith? Is it because they may be registered as Democrats, or have donated money to the party or individual Democratic candidates? And if you can furnish evidence that their ties to Democratic Party extend beyond simple registration and/or donating, so what ? Who the city council appoints to fill the upcoming vacant seat should be focused on who will best serve the citizens of San Luis Obispo. To assume that the next highest vote getter is the best qualified to serve is just plain “lazy logic”; there is every possibility that someone who did not have the financial means to wage a campaign could be better suited than Mr. Carpenter. I for one would like the process to unfold before I criticize what “might” happen. In the current political climate I cannot believe that “business as usual” is going to be allowed by the voters any longer, and there will most likely a very large, concentrated microscope focused on how local governments operate. This will be a “new” city council by the way, to expect that everything will happen in the same old “good ‘ole boy” manner is simply assuming the worst without evidence. If the process is not conducted completely above board and suspicion, I will be one of the first to denounce their actions. Let’s see how this happens, shall we?

Watch and see Bob. Marx’s replacement WILL be strongly attached to the DNC. If Mr. Carpenter is, then he will have a chance. If he is not, I seriously doubt he will be appointed — just watch.

Kathy Smith for example has a very spotty record as a public servant in SLO. She left her position on the council back in the late 1990’s to take a job. She really hasn’t been involved in SLO politics since, but she was chosen by the DNC to be on the council and they scrounged-up enough votes to make that happen.

Mr. Carpenter put it on the line and the people voted. He should receive the appointment no matter what his political affiliation.

It WILL be business as usual until it gets darned ugly. The NEXT election will be one of reform and dare I say, a closer look at the politics of those running.

Sounds like a job for Star-Whackers!

Hmmm, you make numerous references to the DNC, I doubt they even know about our little village. If you actually mean the local Dem Central Committee then you have something. That group did endorse a number of candidates for council. But I think you are getting carried away with the grandiose claims of national interference in our puny affairs.

And though many have forgotten I remind you these positions are non partisan, wherein party affiliations are not supposed to play a role. Many just elected are Dems; Brown and Romero are Repos. So what? Their personal take on business in our burg is what counts.

The past few councils have not served the public-they have been too enraptured by big business and

that tired old lie, ‘grow or die’. I hope the new council will actually listen to average citizens before making their decisions-a situation so rare I would call it almost nonexistent. Anyone attending a council meeting in the last 40 years knows exactly what I mean, and in the last 5 years our councils (and some current members of this one coming in) have been adept at ignoring public input. In fact the biggest

vote getter for council is the king of this sad situation, apparently he feels he is the only one with any good ideas-typical arrogant attitude that seems to creep up on so many who cling to public office.

Yes, I certainly agree with you — the DCC — you are absolutely correct.

I wouldn’t have been comfortable with a “Repo” mayor and 4 “Repo” council members either. What I find distasteful is the DCC (probably in the form of Marx herself) digging up a dilettante like Kathy Smith simply to fill a slot. The last time she was on the council in the 1990’s she left after 1.5 years for a better gig. She hasn’t been involved in SLO politics for years but by golly the DCC dug her up and scrounged-up enough votes from loyalists to put her in office.

I find that distasteful yet in the end I only have voters to blame…

Let’s see…

Jan Marx — deeply involved in the Democratic National Party. John Ashbaugh — deeply involved in the Democratic National Party. Andrew Carter — deeply involved in the Democratic National Party. Kathy Smith — deeply involved in the Democratic National Party (actually more of a pawn than anything.)

What do you bet our new mayor and council members will appoint whomever is anointed by the DNC to fill Marx’s former council seat? It’s sad when local politics becomes so lopsided in a partisan manner.

I can’t wait for the coming “budget crisis.”

What a relief.