Sunday, February 19, 2012

CA-30 Berman's supporters whine

Once again, Howard Berman's supporters are calling for Brad Sherman to leave the CA-30 congressional race and run in CA-26. It's pretty pathetic, really. If he'd like to avoid a primary against Sherman, Berman should run in CA-26. After all, Sherman doesn't have a problem running against Berman.

CA-30 has nearly 3 times as many of Sherman's constituents as it does Berman's. More of Henry Waxman's current constituents are in the district than Berman's. More than 75% of Berman's constituents are in CA-29. That district is now 69% Hispanic and Berman feels he can't win it.

Berman's people successfully derailed Brad Sherman getting the Democratic party endorsement. That the Democratic party was leaning toward Sherman says a lot about who is the better candidate and who should consider going elsewhere.

To sum up, Berman has abandoned his district and moved to Sherman's and has been whining ever since that Sherman hasn't surrendered the district to him.


  1. This is wrong on a couple of levels. First, Sherman used to represent about half of the Ventura County District including the part (Thousand Oaks) that Republicans need to win to steal the seat. Second, because of seniority and fundraising, Berman is in a critical position and his colleagues want him to stay in that seat. Berman is the third best fundraiser for Democrats in the house while Sherman at no point in his career has raised significant money for other Dems. He is also the point man on a lot of critical legislation while Sherman is generally thought of as a back bencher. Of the members of Congress who have so far endorsed, 23 out of 25 have endorsed Berman (with the two who haven't being candidates he opposed when they ran)and virtually every elected official in California has endorsed Berman because they know we need his leadership in Congress. The only major endorsement Sherman has is from former President Clinton who has publicly said that he owes Sherman an endorsement because he traveled to other states to campaign for Hillary (when she was the frontrunner of course) while Berman's daughter was a staffer on Barack Obama's campaign. But no one is claiming Sherman would be a more effective member of Congress. Beyond all of that, the entire district is an area that Howard Berman has represented at some point in his career, while Sherman would still have to get up to speed on the issues in some parts of the district. The choice should be clear to anyone who studies the issues.

  2. Sherman represented a small part of the 26th for 4 years. The 26th covers all of Western Ventura, while he repped some of eastern Ventura. Some of eastern Ventura is in Buck McKeon's 25th. I'm surprised Berman's people haven't tried to throw him into that district.

    For the last 10 years, Brad Sherman has repped 58% of the new 30th. Howard Berman has repped 20%. This is Brad Sherman's district. If Howard Berman wanted it, he should've run here in 2002. I doubt Berman is more up to speed on areas that Sherman has represented for 10 years and Berman represented a decade or two ago.

    To me, it's whining to suggest Brad Sherman abandon the district he's represented the last 10 years because Howard Berman doesn't want to run in CA-29, which consists of 71% of his current constituents.

    I'm not going to dispute who might be more valuable to the Democratic party, who is a better congressman, or who is more popular with his colleagues. While those issues might be important to Democrats and other members of the House, they don't give Howard Berman a sense of entitlement to someone else's s eat.

  3. The 26th is a district that the Republicans are trying to take and Sherman running there would eliminate their chances. As far as not getting into questions about whose more valuable, etc. those are pretty important when house leadership makes clear they have a preference for one member over another in an area. In a political sense, Sherman has no advantage because his portion of the district is non-voters (people likely to vote this June are less than 40%), but what is more significant is that party leadership would prefer Berman there because he has more expertise on issues involving the entertainment industry and has shown that and because more importantly, Berman has shown over the years that he would raise money for other Dems which Sherman has never done. Since we are talking about places like Encino and Toluca Lake and places with major Dem donors, our party needs someone who will work the fields or we won't get the kind of support we have received in the past. These are not Spanish land grants that a candidate inherits. Virtually everyone agrees Berman is the more effective member of Congress. Sherman can fight him if he wants, but in the end do you really think the voters will take someone acknowledged as less effective because he represented a few more of them in the past?

  4. I should add that no one is ordering Sherman to do anything. They are simply making it clear that if he doesn't move, the party leadership will make sure it is known that they believe Berman would do the better job and at that point voters would have to make a choice. Sherman should move for his own career's sake.

  5. Sherman wouldn't eliminate Republican chances in CA-26. Republicans have Tony Strickland, their strongest non-incumbent in the state. Both Fiorina and Whitman won CA-26. Sherman carpetbagging into the district won't assure anything for the Democrats. At best, it's a toss-up. Ventura County isn't the San Fernando Valley. The core Democratic voters are in the western part of the county. They are far more downscale than his current and twice as many of those Democrats are Hispanic. Sherman is a bad fit for CA-26 and a questionable sell to Democrats there.

    If he were to lose CA-26, would he have a career? If he wins CA-30, his career is set.

    I understand many Democrats like Howard Berman better, but Brad Sherman has just as much, if not more, right to run in this district and let the voters decide who is more effective.

    Berman's supporters done' want to discuss the district and consider that he might move to CA-26. They're pretty much telling Sherman to move and are indignant that he won't.