Professor Smith Discusses Richmond Elections

Tuesday, November 04, 2014
KQED NEWS -- There is really no hot-button issue this time around, like the soda tax that failed two years ago. Smith predicts turn out will be low. And that usually benefits the progressives. “It’s not clear where that vote comes from in terms of ethnically, class or whatever,” said Robert C. Smith, a Political Science Professor at San Francisco State. He’s been following Richmond politics for decades. “But it is clear that on the basis of past elections that they have a pretty good grass-roots mobilization get-out-the-vote campaign.” Smith says that if you look at Richmond’s politics over time, the rise of McLaughlin and her Richmond Progressive Alliance has actually been surprising. He says the winner of this election will signify whether the city wants to continue this progressive agenda, or return to a more moderate, pro-business leadership.