This is a sad letter to write. I am writing to let you know how disappointed I am.
I have given you the benefit of the doubt many times before, but I can’t do it anymore. This recent time you changed your position on an issue important to me was one time too many.
I remember back before you ran for Davis City Council in 2016, we sat on the patio at the Co-op talking about your potential candidacy. It was a cool evening, but the conversation was warm. We were friends who had worked on a campaign together before. I remember suggesting then that you run for County Board of Supervisors, because I knew that so many of the issues you were interested in were actually dealt with at the county level and not at the City Council. I think I may have been the first to suggest your current campaign.
We talked about Measure R (formerly Measure J), the citizens right to vote on the annexation of agricultural lands to the City of Davis. You told me you supported it. Soon thereafter I saw video of you at the Davis College Democrat (DCD) forum stating that you opposed measure R completely. “it is going to be very hard to take the vote away from people… I am definitely for repealing.”
I was hurt and disappointed.
But, I thought you redeemed yourself in my eyes when you wrote an op-ed publish in the Davisite, stating in no uncertain terms that you supported Measure R and the citizen’s right to vote. In the op-ed you stated,
“I am writing on Measure R because of its continued importance to all of us here in Davis. Let me begin by stating in as clear as terms as possible that I support Measure R. I unequivocally support direct citizen participation in land use decisions affecting City policies for compact urban form, agricultural land preservation and adequate housing supply to meet internal City needs.” (link)
You took some strong backlash from student leaders from the DCD for the op-ed, but I believed you at the time when you said that you had just misspoken at the forum. You were a very green candidate at the time, and your answer was pretty muddled, but after listening again in the context of your latest statements, I don’t believe you anymore. DCD President Perrin Swanlund summed it up then by saying, “Regardless of your position on Measure R, the dishonesty displayed here should worry and offend you. In a political world torn by fake news, alternative facts, and straight-up lies, it is essential that we hold those who would represent us to the highest levels of accountability. In the very least, we should expect them to tell us the truth.” (link)
DCD member Aaron Latta retracted his support for you on his Facebook page and went further on a local blog stating “This what someone getting caught lying looks like.” (link)
Sierra Club: Background - For the last 20 years, Measure J/R allows any annexation by the City of Davis of county land on the periphery of the City to be subject to a vote of approval by the citizens of Davis. It is scheduled to expire in 2020 unless renewed.
Do you support or oppose the renewal of Measure J/R and why? If you support renewal do you propose any modifications of the ordinance?
Deos: I support the renewal of Measure J.
I was glad to know you stuck by what you had stated in the op-ed in 2018. It was notable how concise your statement was.
But then, the Davis College Democrats held another forum February 11th, 2020 (My compliments to the DCD for asking good questions and getting solid answers).
Linda, your answer there was terrible. First you claimed to support measure R, “I do support it R, J – however one wants to look at it.”
But then you went on to undermine your statement with statements undermining the citizens right to vote,
“I have some concerns about it because it seems that… democracy is important, I believe that we should have votes on issues, but I also believe in representational democracy where we elect people who will take time to read about the issues, delve deeply into it, because you don’t have that time. You are instead just reading a flier, or you are reading a blurb in some place instead of being able to do a deep dive into the policy behind it. But this measure is so ingrained into Davis now it wouldn’t be right to take that away, but I want to make sure we educate voters to some of the consequences around having a vote, a Measure R vote.”
Some may claim I am reading too much into this answer and claim that it is consistent with what you told the Sierra Club. It’s not. You had all the space needed to say what your concerns were to the Sierra Club. It is exactly like Aaron Lotta diagnosed back in 2020, “she said one thing to one set of potential voters then the exact opposite to another group with the intention of gaining support from both” (link).
Linda, you went on from there to give even more reasons oppose renewal of Measure R, but this first part of your answer to the DCD in 2020 echoes your answer in 2018 so closely that it is clear that you do not actually support Measure R, and you never have. At best you see that it would be difficult to take away the right to vote on large peripheral developments from Davis voters.
Wow. Just wow.
I am deeply disappointed in your answer on so many levels. First, I am disappointed because you now don’t seem to support Measure R, something that I see as important for our community. Second, I am disappointed because you don’t seem to support democratic checks on growth. Those are bad enough, but nothing compared to the third.
Third, and much more importantly, I am deeply disappointed at your “finger to the wind” approach to politics. My trust in you is gone. I have now seen it too many times. You switch positions on important subjects based on who you’re talking to. I have come to agree with Aaron Latta when he posted, “I can no longer trust her statements.”
Linda, this seems to me to be the worst kind of politics and I want nothing to do with it.