The Trouble With California’s State Treasurer Race – Daily Breeze

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The California Treasurer is one of the most important positions in the state as this elected official is the chief asset and financial manager of the state. The treasurer not only needs the requisite investment experience, but also a reputation for probity and an unmatched commitment to transparency.

Yet none of the treasurer candidates in the June 7 primary vote inspires confidence or even exceeds the lowest bar. Since elections offer finite choices, we try to endorse in all major races, but we have no choice but to take a pass on this race.

Incumbent Treasurer Fiona Ma, a Democrat, takes on Orange Supervisor Andrew Do, the main Republican opponent. The ballot also includes two longtime candidates — Cudahy Councilman Jack Guerrero, a perennial GOP nominee with virtually no funding, and Meghann Adams, whose background as a school bus driver and self-proclaimed socialist views don’t suit her. managing a $3.2 trillion portfolio.

The race comes down to Ma and Do, who will almost certainly face each other in the general election. Let’s start with the incumbent, who has been at the center of scandals that challenge her good judgment. For starters, Ma tried to help controversial Santa Ana police union president Gerry Serrano increase his pension by $60,000 a year.

Serrano earns $500,000 a year from taxpayers, but works entirely on union business. Ma agreed to the author’s legislation that would have allowed his union-related work to become pensionable. In the process, the police union became one of its main contributors to the campaign. Instead of confessing, Ma described her efforts as public-spirited.

Additionally, Ma, who lives in San Francisco, billed taxpayers for her frequent travel expenses to Sacramento, making her the “only officer in the entire state who consistently spent her trips to Sacramento as business trips.” complete throughout his first two years in office,” according to a Sacramento. Bee survey.

Ma’s bizarre decision to share hotel rooms with staff has come under scrutiny after a former staff member sued her for sexual harassment and wrongful dismissal – allegations Ma denies. When it comes to her official duties, she defends the indefensible bullet train and seems indifferent to retirement commitments.

Good God, but check Do’s luggage.

In 2020, the state closed a money laundering investigation of Do and the local GOP after finding “insufficient evidence” of any campaign violations. Do was accused of transferring money through a GOP account to avoid disclosing the donor (and violating contribution limits) — an allegation Do described as baseless and politically motivated.

Yet the allegations highlight a common complaint: secrecy. As this editorial board noted, “Do for years limited residents’ ability to speak out” and “sought to stifle views he found offensive.” He also blocked county staff from participating in public briefings about COVID-19. Suffice it to say, Do is not the candidate for transparency.

We also criticized his apparent efforts to exert political control over CalOptima, the county’s health care provider for poor and disabled residents. There are no allegations of wrongdoing, but VoiceofOC interviewed health officials who expressed concern about politicization given the multibillion-dollar agency’s past issues.

We are not the only newspaper to refuse to support this race. We’re used to choosing the lesser evil, but there are times when it’s impossible to play the game.

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