Eric Bauman lives up to his reputation of playing dirty politics
May 17, 2017 (observer.com)
The California Democratic Party chair race turned into a closely contested race between establishment candidate and corporate lobbyist Eric Bauman, who currently serves as vice chair, and Kimberly Ellis, a San Francisco activist backed by the National Nurses Union and Our Revolution. Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom endorsed both candidates ahead of the election on May 20, though Sanders supporters rallied behind Ellis, who acknowledges the Democratic Party has lost its way and focused on progressive issues like single payer health care despite supporting Clinton in the primaries.
Bauman, a Democratic Party insider whose election was initially viewed as a sure thing, has lived up to his description by the LA Weekly in 2011 as “a professional Democrat and behind-the-scenes power player who has a reputation for playing hard-ball politics and not always being a nice guy.” On May 20, his tactics paid off as he managed to fend off Ellis’ surge, capturing 60 more delegate votes out of nearly 3,000 cast. Ellis has not yet conceded and is consulting with attorneys on how to push for a recount.
On May 7, the Los Angeles Times reported Bauman sent an email to California Democrats alleging he is being falsely targeted with rumors that he engages in “inappropriate behavior with 14- and 16-year-old boys.” Bauman didn’t cite or provide evidence of the rumors. Instead, he cited that a few people within his campaign had heard them. He told the Los Angeles Times that by addressing the rumor, “I sort of in a way spread the thing.” He claimed he wasn’t accusing his opponent of being behind it.