Episode

6/8 The GOP Ground Game & San Francisco Recalls Chesa Boudin w/ Alex Sammon & Joe Eskenazi

June 8, 2022

Emma hosts Alex Sammon, staff writer at the American Prospect, to discuss his recent article “The RNC’s Ground Game of Inches.” Then, Emma is joined by Joe Eskenazi, editor and columnist at Mission Local, to discuss San Francisco District Attorney Chesa Boudin’s recall last night. First, Emma covers the continued kabuki theater around gun control as Schumer now shifts to a smaller deal, Matthew McConaughey speaking on the Uvalde tragedy before staging a photo op with Henry Cuellar, and touch on the recall of Chesa Boudin. Then, she’s joined by Alex Sammon as they dive into his coverage of the RNC’s mass investment in community centers as they begin to gun for very specific impoverished communities, first discussing the complete runaround that Sammon saw as organizers and facilitators refused to return calls or discuss the centers, forcing him to attend in person. This gave him an intimate view of these centers, which have been cropping up across the US since the GOP’s realization that they actually are not THAT far behind in polling with communities of color, and that just bringing around certain communities in certain states can have massive dividends, as they shift to a grassroots movement that is reminiscent of left-wing organizing that focuses on meeting community needs. Sammon then dives specifically into his experiences at the community center in Robeson, North Carolina, a historically blue district in a supposedly blue state, and how the GOP took advantage of growing racial tensions between Native and Black populations alongside an economic collapse in the wake of the NAFTA replacement, as he explores the complete swap between organizing tactics of the GOP and Democrats, as the former shifts to a ground game, with these community centers offering daily programming with a clear association to the right, whereas democrats have chosen to go after airplay in districts where myriad people have no internet access. They wrap up their discussion by touching on what this says about the complete failures of Democratic messaging under Biden. Next, Emma is joined by Joe Eskenazi in reaction to the successful recall of Chesa Boudin, San Francisco’s reform-focused DA, and the complete lack of surprise around the result. Next, he looks to flesh out the dynamics that were working behind the scenes, with the wealthier enclaves of the city, alongside real estate investment and a big SF PAC, and why, no matter how important it is, following the money is not a tangible electoral tactic, just as confronting emotions with statistics (e.g. no, SF does NOT have a crime wave) is unsuccessful when the wealthy constituency believes to the heart in the antisocial behavior of the poorer communities. They wrap up the interview by diving deeper into Boudin’s relationship (or lack thereof) with the SFPD, walking through the obvious refusal to work (whether a work stoppage, underperformance, or both) for his office, why this is so common in relationships between Police forces and their governing officials,  how Mayor London Breed took advantage of this and used Boudin as her scapegoat, and what the conversation around San Franciscan politics should look like moving forwards.

And in the Fun Half: Emma takes a very quick call with Justin from Ohio on why in the world Democrats try to appeal to the need for strong opponents, the absurdity (and obvious homophobia) of going from “parents’ rights” to making it illegal for a parent to bring a child to a drag show, and Steve Scalise discusses the total lack of regulation around planes (must’ve never flown in one). Chris Coons comes to Joe Biden’s defense for bolstering his allyship with MBS, Charlie from NJ discusses the “what if it was YOUR [daughter, child, wife, sister, Black friend]” talking point making its way into the gun control debate, and Tulsi Gabbard takes on the most pressing issues in American politics: Hunter Biden’s sex scandals and her social media following. The Queen of England appears more lifelike than ever, and Steph from NY proposes a waterworks public project, plus, your calls and IMs!

Check out Alex’s piece here: https://prospect.org/politics/rncs-ground-game-of-inches-convert-minorities-into-republicans/

Check out Joe’s work at Mission Local here: https://missionlocal.org/author/joee/

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