Numerous reports from East Bay realtors state that they are receiving strong arm calls from representatives of the California Association of Realtors (CAR) promoting Steven Glazer‘s campaign for the 16th Assembly District race. Realtors are told they should vote for Glazer, a Democrat, because he supports “realtors issues,” and that a Republican cannot win the district, said Bette Sue Schack, a realtor in Danville, affiliated with Pacific Union.
Campaigning as an anti-tax Crusdaer, the calls from CAR fit with recent attempts by the Glazer campaign to try and muddy the waters as to which candidate was the “true” conservative in the AD-16 race. He faces a strong Republican candidate in Catharine Baker (R-Pleasanton), in addition to two other Democrats Tim Sbranti, the Mayor of Pleasanton who is supported by the local Democratic Party and unions; and Newell Arnerich, Mayor of Danville.
It’s pretty obvious that Glazer’s campaign is based on splitting the Democratic vote and siphoning what votes he can from Republicans not paying attention to help him win one of the top two spots in the California Primary Election, on June 3.
Hounded from the Left as a fake Democrat, Glazer has a long way to go to burnish a poor record as an anti-tax crusader. He worked for governor Gray Davis, served as the campaign manager for Democrat Jerry Brown’s first gubernatorial campaign, and helped shepherd Brown’s Proposition 30 tax increase initiative to victory in 2012.
The phone callers from CAR first ask if the realtor was in favor of the recent BART strike as a segue to claim a Republican cannot win the district so they should support Glazer. When Schack pushed the caller to cite what “realtor issues” Glazer supported, the caller was hard pressed to answer and mumbled something about “protecting mortgage deductions” as if it were a high polling issue in the camnpaign.
California State campaign finance records for the California Real Estate Independent Expenditure Committee for the California Association of Realtors reports receiving thousands of contributions listed from real estate offices, with many in the amount of only $12. These don’t look so much like freely given donations from individual real estate firms in the district but CAR claiming apportioned funds for the Glazer campaign from dues paid by CAR members according to agency size.
Schack said that as a conservative Republican she felt it was wrong for the California Association of Realtors to use her membership dues to not only support a political candidate like Glazer but to use strong-arm tactics with the phone calls. She asked Liza Garcia, who works with political affairs for CAR, who, according to Schack, said it was all quite legal and legit.
“But I’m annoyed,” said Schack. “It’s un-American to use my dues like that for political purposes without my permission and for such flimsy excuses. Can you believe they gave Glazer all that money?”