The CN&R’s picks for the March 3 presidential primary

The CN&R makes endorsements selectively, meaning we may not weigh in on everything on the ballot. We do so for the contests and measures we’ve researched sufficiently and deem prominent enough, so consider this caveat well ahead of the March 3 election.

As always, in addition to considering our recommendations, we urge voters to do their own homework, beginning with their official Voter Information Guide. Additionally helpful: the stories in this special election issue (see page 16) and our coverage of the recent forums put on by the League of Women Voters (LWV) of Butte County (see “A closer look,” Newslines, Jan. 23, and “The run-up,” Newslines, Feb. 6).

Two more resources to bookmark are the LWV and county Clerk-Recorder’s websites at lwvbuttecounty.org and clerk-recorder.buttecounty.net, respectively. For the state races and the school bond measure not covered here, check out the statewide league’s website, votersedge.org.

Finally, we’d like to thank all the local candidates—including those we did not endorse. We enjoyed interviewing them and believe they want what’s best for the North State, and we respect their willingness to serve.

Federal offices

U.S. President

Democrat: Elizabeth Warren is our choice for the highest office in the land. She is a second-term senator whose bona fides rise to the top in the crowded field of Democrats. Warren earned a juris doctor from Rutgers and spent decades teaching law, beginning her career at the University of Houston and eventually taking a job at Harvard. An Oklahoma native and former Republican, she is among the nation’s foremost experts in bankruptcy law. Following the global economic crisis wrought by Wall Street in 2008, Warren was tapped by President Obama with the creation of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau, a federal financial watchdog agency. She is a compassionate champion for the poor and middle class, and she is capable of working across party lines to stanch the corruption that serves as the hallmark of the current administration.

Republican: No endorsement. No GOP challenger stands a chance against the current POTUS. Here’s our message: Donald Trump has been and will continue to be disastrous on virtually all fronts for our nation: environmental (rollbacks to protections of waterways, air, endangered species); economic (historic national debt due to tax cuts for the wealthiest to the detriment of the poor and middle class); and the social safety net (food stamp cuts and the recent proposal to slash Social Security benefits and Medicaid). Moreover, he’s emboldened further since being acquitted by the spineless members of his own party during the impeachment trial.

U.S. Congress

Choosing Audrey Denney was an easy consensus. She is whip-smart and passionate about the well-being of the North State’s residents, and she’s not beholden to special interests. Incumbent Doug LaMalfa is a career politician who has fed at the public trough for too long. He’s known for his family farm being the beneficiary of more than $5 million in federal subsidies while cutting safety nets such a food stamps. He’s also a Trump toady who degraded himself further by participating in an embarrassing stunt at the nation’s Capitol during depositions related to the House impeachment inquiry.

Local offices, measure

Butte County Supervisorial District 1: No endorsement. Incumbent Bill Connelly is running for his fifth term as the county’s representative in the Oroville area. We’ve endorsed him in the past, but chose not to this year due to his eleventh-hour responses to our election-related queries. His challenger is Ian Greene, an In-Home Supportive Services worker.

Butte County Supervisorial District 4: Our pick is Sue Hilderbrand, a longtime political science instructor at Chico State and Butte College. We like challenger Tod Kimmelshue, a Durham-based retired banker who to his credit has amassed broad support and a record war chest. However, we believe Hilderbrand’s background in disaster recovery and expertise in public policy make her best equipped for the job. Chief things that won our support: her pledges to preserve natural resources such as water, address the myriad complex post-Camp Fire issues through research and planning, and do outreach in communities long ignored by previous representatives of the district.

Butte County Supervisorial District 5: This is the CN&R’s second time endorsing incumbent Doug Teeter, a pragmatic and knowledgeable representative of the Ridge communities. He’s the person we believe is best prepared to lead the region through the difficult post-fire landscape. Challenger Henry Schleiger, a wildfire mapping technician, has interesting ideas on rebuilding in the burn scar and appears passionate about public service. We look forward to hearing more from him as he continues his term on the County Planning Commission.

Measure A: We do not support the Chico Area Recreation and Park District’s local parcel tax to buoy its programs, address deferred maintenance and build a massive aquatics center in north Chico. There are numerous reasons, including it being regressive (it’s the same fee regardless of property size and income level). Other gripes: The tax is permanent and saddled with an annual adjustment based on the consumer price index during a time when our national economy teeters on the verge of recession.

We love Chico’s parks and believe many are long overdue for upgrades and repairs, but the public should note that not all of them are under CARD’s jurisdiction. Therefore, this money will not address much of the crumbling infrastructure in parts of Bidwell Park. Further, we haven’t been impressed with CARD’s marketing on this issue, especially the not-so-subtle pitch that the money will fix the issues stemming from homeless people’s presence in the public sphere and that it will magically improve the lives of the propertied class.

That said, we’d gladly rethink our support in the future should the measure fail and the aforementioned issues be addressed. Until then, it’s a no from us.