Primaries are tough. There are a huge number of candidates, many of whom have very little information written about them. To make things a little easier, we’ve made a cheat sheet with our recommendations for the primary races this June. We have included less in-depth analysis of the candidates as we will for a general election in which there are fewer candidates to research. Many of our recommendations represent “lesser evil” calculations, and in some cases, there simply isn’t anyone else to vote for.
California’s primaries are nearly all top-two “jungle” primaries: all candidates are in the same pool, and the top two vote-getters move onto the general. You might notice that a surprising number of these races are either literally or practically uncontested and that most of the candidates seem bland, hazily defined, and mildly corrupt. This is a consequence of our big-money political system that rewards machine candidates and incumbents while drastically hampering the democratic process for voters and candidates outside the aforementioned groups. We've chosen not to make recommendations in races where a Democrat is running against a non-Democrat and is expected to win, unless we thought the Democrat was particularly worth recommending. It is our collective duty to make sure these uncontested candidates face true challenges from the left in future elections.
The Democratic Party continues to produce centrist candidates whose politics and policies do not serve their constituents and, in some cases, do active harm. Given the multiple, intersectional crises our communities face, now is the time to demand representation that takes action to preserve the dignity of human life and our environment.
For most offices, we offer 3 different categories of support:
Endorsed: The Endorsed classification is our highest level of support. These candidates have met with our chapter and have political positions that align with the values of DSA-SLO. An Endorsement requires a full vote within our chapter, as we will provide official and active chapter support, including canvassing, phone-banking, fundraising, etc. to these candidates.
Recommended: The Recommended classification is reserved for candidates who have not received a full endorsement from the chapter, but that the DSA-SLO Electoral Politics Committee still believes to have demonstrated a commitment to many of the values of our chapter. While the chapter may not act in an official capacity on the behalf of recommended candidates, individual members may still provide them active support.
Preferred: The Preferred classification is generally offered when there is a contested race in which the candidate's opponents would actively work against our ideals. While we may not fully align with the preferred candidate, their opponent would be disastrous in our estimation.
SLO Voter Guide Cheat Sheet
Endorsed: Active Chapter Support
Recommended: Not a Socialist but shares similar values
Preferred*: Lesser evil in a close race
State & Federal
Santa Barbara County
Morro Bay Special Election
San Luis Obispo County
Judge Office #1
Judge Office #10
Judge Office #12
There is little to be excited about here as shown by the lack of candidates reaching the status of recommended. The working class of California deserves better than what either party is offering. Join DSA today to start building power for 2024.