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Barry Jantz

Sunday San Diego…Dumanis’ Nuñez Commutation Lawsuit, Redistricting Debate Rages, An Honor to Bloggers, More

Is DA Bonnie Dumanis Five Weeks Late with Lawsuit over Nuñez Commutation?… The rest of Arnold Schwarzenegger’s very questionable record as Governor is open to debate — barely — but the singular travesty that cannot be forgiven is one of his final acts.  The pure political pandering at the heart of the Estaban Nuñez commutation and subsequent thumb-nosing at critics over the matter proves without doubt the man was never of the proper mettle for high public office.

That personal venting out of the way, I was pleased to see San Diego District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis file suit last week to reverse the action, not over the Governor’s right to commute the sentence, but based on the disregard for the crime victims’ opinions when considering the commutation.

Yet, David King writes in San Diego News Room on Friday that the unique legal action by Dumanis, although “rooted in a desire to bring about justice,” missed the statute of limitations deadline, which he notes would have been early April. He also provides other legal analysis of what he claims as the suit’s shortcomings. Some excerpts:

“…the merits of the petition filed by the District Attorney, and its likelihood of success, show this to be an ill-conceived lawsuit, likely to only prolong the distress of the victims and their families.”

“The petition reflects a lack of fundamentals in the legal area of ‘administrative mandamus.’  It appears that the DA has failed to consider such basic gating items as the statute of limitations.”

“It is highly doubtful that a court will find the DA has the right to force the governor into court to set aside an action that has a historical record of untouchable deference.  We have not identified a single instance, in any state, ever, where a governor’s clemency authority has been properly subject to judicial review.”

The excerpts noted above, however, don’t begin to provide the detail found in King’s article.  Read all of “Suit against Nuñez commutation is unlikely to prevail

Redistricting Debate Continues to Rage in City of San Diego… The finger-pointing debacle continues. Accusations of partisan Redistricting Commission stacking, political favoritism, and questionable contracting decisions, all against a backdrop of what the City Charter requires as a non-partisan process. To up the ante, toss in the addition of a new ninth city council district to the current eight. For somewhat of a primer, read Jon Fleischman’s April 21 FR entry or these various posts at San Diego Rostra.

In Rostra on Friday, Greg Larkin writes that San Diego’s progressives have now revealed their overall city redistricting mapping plan, with the “end goal…a guaranteed 6-3 Democratic majority on the Council that can override any mayoral veto.” Commenters on the blog say that the redistricting map in question doesn’t meet the “deviation” requirement of relatively equal populations, with FR’s own Duane Dichiara noting, “This is a long ball throw in the hopes that as it’s dialed back they get more than they should.”

Read Larkin’s Rostra piece, “Redistricting Proposal: A Power Grab by Democrats and Labor in the City of San Diego

An Honor to Bloggers and Citizen Journalists… My recent selection by the San Diego County Taxpayers Association as a Media Watchdog finalist in the print media category for the October 2010 Flash and SD Rostra story, “Sweetwater Schools Using Public Funds to Promote Ricasa During Re-Election?,” was quite a surprise!  Especially considering how much Jon Fleischman pays me for this gig … in comparison to the deserving real journalists from San Diego City Beat, the Union-Tribune and Voice of San Diego on the list (see all the Watchdog finalists here). Thanks to Gayle Falkenthal for her post on the finalists last week at Rostra.

I am truly honored indeed.  My “competitors” turned out some of the most significant political news stories in the San Diego area during the past year.  To be included is truly humbling.

However, what is really being recognized by the Taxpayers Association — and increasingly by a lot of others — is the fact that solid journalism can now be found in many arenas, not only the traditional mainstream media outlets. I consider my inclusion as simply part of the growing respect and recognition that bloggers and citizen journalists are receiving in many walks of life, in most cases out of a pure love and passion for the idea and the “pen.”

Thanks to all of you that make this ongoing experiment in political journalism so rewarding.

Oh yes, if you’re interested in this Thursday night’s (May 19) Golden Watchdog and Fleece awards dinner, click for the information and watch the included video.  The event is always a truly raucous time!

Don’t Forget: Clinton, Obama and Palin Invite you to Dinner…The San Diego GOP’s annual Lincoln-Reagan Dinner is May 26 at the Rancho Bernardo Inn:

Watch the invitation video — A must watch!

Sign up for the event here.

Have a superb week!