Behind the scenes of Chronicle's endorsements
John Diaz, editorial page editor, 10/25/2014
The endorsements listed on the editorial page represent many hours of researching the issues and meeting with scores of candidates and advocates for and against ballot measures. It's a fascinating, but not always exciting, process for the editorial board that began before Labor Day. Here are some of the memorable moments of poignancy, amusement or just plain surprise...
Best counterpunch: Ron Nehring, candidate for lieutenant governor. We had hoped to engage Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom and his Republican challenger Nehring to debate on Google Hangout. After all, Newsom was the author of "Citizenville," which decried the timidity of conventional politics and hailed technology as a way to advance transparency and interaction. Newsom declined. In fact, he has refused to debate Nehring at all - a most conventional strategy for an incumbent with a huge lead. Then Newsom took his explanation a step further: suggesting modern debates had become too vacuous and driven by sound bites and triviality.
Nehring's response? OK, Mr. Lieutenant Governor, how about a series of "Lincoln-Douglas debates," which went for three hours each in 1858? Now, that's substance in old Citizenville.
Newsom declined the challenge.
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