Friday, December 26, 2014

PACS choose between Wolk, Dodd

From page A1 | May 08, 2014 |

Money is pouring into the District 4 Assembly race with less than a month left before June 3’s open primary.

It includes a pile of union dollars for Davis Mayor Pro Tem Dan Wolk, plus PAC money supporting — and targeting — Napa County Supervisor Bill Dodd.

The race pits Democrats Dodd, Wolk and Davis Mayor Joe Krovoza against Republicans Charlie Schaupp, an Esparto farmer and retired Marine officer, and Dustin Call, a legislative aide and college student who lives in Davis.

The top two vote-getters will face off on the fall ballot with a chance to replace termed-out Assemblywoman Mariko Yamada, D-Davis.

Unions are rallying to the side of Wolk, a progressive who had a third-best $83,651 on hand at the March 17 reporting deadline. He’s since raised $98,100.

Large contributors to his campaign include political action committees representing teachers, firefighters, food workers, health care workers, university faculty and public employees.

Opportunity PAC has dropped $60,746 in opposition to the moderate Dodd, a former Republican, spending money on opposition research, polling and mailers.

The group says it’s made up of teachers, health care providers, school employees and other groups that — in union form — are largely backing Wolk. Elsewhere, the same PAC is spending thousands of dollars to oppose the re-election of Sen. Andy Vidak, R-Hanford.

Meanwhile, a PAC called Keeping Californians Working is backing research and mailers in support of Dodd to the tune of $46,787.

That group describes itself as “a coalition of dentists, realtors, housing providers, energy, insurance agents and employees to protect working Californians.”

It is also spending money on behalf of Vidak and Assembly candidate Autumn Burke, a pro-business Democrat from Marina del Rey.

Dodd, who had $527,942 in the bank as of March 17, has pulled in $60,300 since. Large donors have included the real estate, building, insurance and winery industries, as well as the Habematolel Pomo of Upper Lake tribe.

Dodd also received a $4,100 contribution from Lake Luciana LLC, a Napa developer which in 2009 failed to secure county board approval for a golf course in the Pope Valley. The project ran into opposition from agriculture and environmental interests.

Dodd supported the project and recently told The Enterprise that he would again, because it would have provided jobs and water to underserved residents.

The darling of environmental groups, Krovoza, had banked $143,893 by March 17. He has raised $32,700 since — $8,000 of that from the California League of Conservation voters.

Call has been all but absent on the campaign trail besides newspaper interviews and reported no donations.

Nonetheless, his campaign has received $6,172 from the Spirit of Democracy PAC funded by Stanford physicist and GOP activist Charles Munger Jr. Munger also paid the filing fee for Call and other moderate Republican candidates in blue districts across the state.

Schaupp, a conservative, remains the largest contributor to his campaign, putting in half of the $5,000 added to his campaign coffers since March 17, when he had $52 on hand.

— Reach Cory Golden at or 530-747-8046. Follow him on Twitter at @cory_golden



Cory Golden

Cory Golden

The Enterprise's higher-education and congressional reporter.
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