In Race for SF Mayor, Leland Yee Is Workhorse and Loner

The Bay Citizen did an excellent profile in the San Francisco edition of The New York Times on California State Senator Leland Yee and his front runner status in the mayoral race in San Francisco:

“Despite his long political history — as a school board member, supervisor, assemblyman and state senator — Yee, who holds a doctorate in psychology, remains enigmatic. He is a consummate retail politician, given to small talk and an avuncular style. Speaking to small crowds at house parties, he sometimes lowers his gaze, projecting not shyness but a cool intensity. He is disciplined and a workhorse on the campaign trail. After legislative sessions in Sacramento, he often drives back to attend consecutive social functions, night after night, before turning to his Senate work around midnight. His omnipresence has bewildered political insiders.”

I’ve briefly seen Yee at a few political related events in the Bay Area, although I’ve never actually had a chance to chat with Yee. In reading and researching elsewhere about Yee, I was impressed with his prodigious accomplishments in San Francisco and California state government; he definitely seems to be more than qualified to be the next mayor of San Francisco.

Personally, I know, have met, and am friends with SF President of the Board of Supervisors David Chiu. Chiu announced his run for mayor this week and I support him. However, as someone who does not live in San Francisco, I wouldn’t be able to vote for him. Given the number of candidates already in the field, voter ranked voting may come into play and may be a “spoiler” for Yee if anti-Yee voters consolidate their support for a secondary candidate, much like how Jean Quan was elected as mayor of Oakland.

Given my time blogging on, it’s exciting to see in such as short amount of time a bountiful number of Asian American candidates interested in running for Mayor of San Francisco, let alone see Mayor Ed Lee appointed interim mayor and become the first Asian American mayor.

San Francisco has the highest percentage of Asian Americans of any major U.S. city at about 35% and literally helped build San Francisco during the Gold Rush and the transcontinental railroad. I think it would be terrific if Yee, Chiu or Phil Ting or any other qualified Asian Americans were elected mayor of San Francisco; not to say I would vote for any of them just because they were Asian.

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About John

I'm a Taiwanese-American and was born & raised in Western Massachusetts, went to college in upstate New York, worked in Connecticut, went to grad school in North Carolina and then moved out to the Bay Area in 1999 and have been living here ever since - love the weather and almost everything about the area (except the high cost of housing...)
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