Civic Empowerment

David is committed to ensuring all who are eligible have the tools they need, the equipment they trust, the information and access they deserve, and the right they value in order to participate as voters and candidates in the elections process.

David and friends in front of the State House in Sacramento

Democracy works when those in power reflect those they serve

Encourage participation among all eligible voters.

In the November 2020 elections in San Mateo County, of hundreds of elected offices, sixty-five offices were filled by appointment because no candidates signed up to run for those offices. Nine candidates ran unopposed. Voter education, outreach, and civic literacy programs, carried out in close collaboration with community-based organizations, must be focused on removing barriers and making the democratic process accessible to all. 

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Ensure fairness, impartiality and transparency.

Elections are complex endeavors. To encourage confidence throughout the community, fair and impartial elections must be ensured through complete transparency by county elections officials who are above-all committed to the values and mission of the elections office. 

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Enhance accuracy, efficiency, and security through continuous process improvement.

Every election deserves substantial post-election internal evaluation. There is no finish line in the areas of security enhancements and the monitoring of the trade-offs between maximizing accuracy and efficiency.

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Empower the electorate out of a fundamental respect for all individuals and the communities with which they identify.

This includes polling locations with features and assistive technology, access to information and resources necessary in one’s native language to fully engage, empower, and ultimately create a more diverse slate of candidates to elect leaders more reflective of our diverse population.

Equity in Elections

  • Among the nine counties, San Mateo County has the highest overrepresentation of White elected officials compared to its population as a whole. 

  • While the region is 60 percent people of color, people of color hold just 29 percent of top local elected offices.

  • Regionwide, men are overrepresented in top elected positions, but women have gained ground, increasing their share of seats to 44 percent as of February 2020, from 40 percent in May 2018.

  • SMC Board of Supervisors is 100% white compared to 40% of our population, and 80% male. 

  • APIs and Latinos continue to be sorely underrepresented among local electeds, especially at the county level. Latinx and APIs make up half of the region’s population but are just 13 percent of top county-level elected officials.

Source:  Bay Area Equity Atlas: Diversity of electeds: Elected officials should reflect the diversity of the population.

We have the opportunity to make public office more accessible and reflective of the rich diversity of the county.

 
 

Resources

Demystify Elections and Campaigning

David and friend wearing a t-shirt that says "vote"

Campaign Resources

Running for local office: all it takes is a desire to make a difference in the community