Friday, April 27, 2012

Wherein Betsy Butler Decides A Part-Time Blogger Is Her Main Opponent In The AD50 Race

So here's my question for Betsy Butler. At what point did you decide you were running against me, Marta Evry, a part-time blogger, and not the three other candidates whose names will appear on the June 5th primary ballot for the 50th Assembly District race?

Let's start with this post on Santa Monica Patch written by one of your surrogates which begins with this:

The 50th Assembly District was treated to a display of bullying last week: One of the candidates running against Betsy Butler's bid for the new district launched a prolonged attack against her campaign promotion.

Does the author link to candidate Torie Osborn's website? Or to the LA Weekly article about the 8,000 plastic baby bottles you dumped on district voters, an article which quotes candidate Richard Bloom as saying your team "is 'milking' her BPA legislation for all its worth."?

No, instead she links to an article I wrote about the environmental concerns raised by district voters regarding those 8,000 foreign-made plastic baby bottles.

Also, imagine my surprise when I heard my name mentioned in the KCAL-TV follow up to the same baby bottle story. Why? Because the "reporter" for the story never bothered to contact me. But he was more than happy to take your word for it that a part-time blogger was somehow able to bully (there's that word again) a sitting Assembly member with a war chest of half a million dollars.

Girlfriend, we need to talk.

This may be news to you, but this race isn't about me. And it's not about you. It's about the people of the 50th Assembly District, the people of California, and how we have to solve the awful, intractable problems that decades of political dysfunction, indeed malpractice, has brought to this state.

I have nothing personal against you, Betsy. I supported you in 2010 when you ran against Tea Party candidate Nathan Mintz (for anyone who's keeping score, I live in Betsy's current district) and I was grateful for your support of Debra Bowen in the Bowen/Hahn race last year.

But for a whole host of reasons I believe you made a poor choice in abandoning your current district to run in AD50.

Mainly because:

A) In choosing to leave your current district vulnerable to Republican takeover to run in another district where the registration advantage is so great, a democratic corpse could get elected, you've made it that much harder for the Assembly to reach the 2/3rds majority needed to break Republican obstruction in Sacramento.

B) You seem to have forgotten that voters like to make informed choices about who will represent them in Sacramento.

For better or worse, I find myself to be the only person writing about this campaign in a consistent and substantive way. Do I have a point of view? Absolutely. It is all out there on public display. But I think it also means I have to work twice as hard to make sure everything I write is accurate, sourced and backed up by the facts. Voters are already ill-served in this state by a news media unwilling to do even the most basic legwork to inform the public, and by politicians willing to exploit that weakness to their own advantage. I shouldn't be adding to the problem.

So this isn't complicated, Betsy. If you want me to stop writing "negative" (i.e.: accurate) posts about your campaign, then stop doing things like this:

  • Calling yourself the "environmental" candidate while at the same time dumping at least 8,000 (and maybe as many as 30,000) unwanted plastic baby bottles on district voters.

So let me conclude with this - if you want to debate what I've written on policy grounds, I'm more than ready to have that conversation. I think that's exactly what voters are hungry for, and what they deserve.

However, if you and your surrogates insist on playing the victim by equating me to multi-billion dollar oil and tobacco interests, good luck with that. 

Because if you think a part-time blogger can bully you, how are voters supposed to believe you'll stand up to the actual bullies, the lobbyists and special interests in Sacramento who come knocking on your office door Every. Single. Day?


  1. Oh heavens to Betsy, has she done lost her mind? She needs to wipe the money from her eyes!

  2. Marta, you forgot the part where she tried to open her out-of-district campaign office over passover. But outside of that...