Saturday, October 13, 2012

Hello? Ellen Corbett Here. I Still Want To Be Congresswoman

ELECTION ‘14//CONGRESS 15 | The ballots haven’t even been counted. Hell, two-thirds of the voters haven’t thought twice about the Nov. 6 general election, but Senate Majority Leader Ellen Corbett is wasting no time at getting a leg up on the competition for the 15th congressional race in 2014.

Two days ago, Pleasanton Weekly tardily reported Corbett is a go for Congress in two years regardless of whether Rep. Pete Stark retains the seat next month or it belongs to Dublin Councilman Eric Swalwell. In fact, Corbett’s certainty for 2014 has been well-known for months. However, that doesn’t mean the report is not noteworthy. Notice where it happened (Pleasanton) and how many weeks from Election Day she trumpeted her future political plans (four weeks).

Despite Swalwell’s upstart campaign giving Stark a run for his money, there doesn’t seem to be much respect among Democratic Party stalwarts for his chances and a perception his potential first-term will instantly become an exercise in lame duck politics. Just look at how the two major candidates for the seat in 2014 act as if the whole Swalwell thing never happened.

A few months ago, Corbett held a fundraiser for her congressional run at a supporter’s home in the Tri Valley. In a similar vein, another likely candidate in 2014, Ro Khanna, amassed a small fortune earlier this year. Khanna, though, has been noticeably quiet and for good reason. He may be Stark’s pick to replace him, if victorious next month. Through that lens, it’s easy to see why Khanna has stepped back, while Corbett has jumped the gun. Khanna has stayed somewhat in the news plugging his excellent new book on manufacturing in the U.S. rather than playing politics in this race.

For Corbett, poking around the Tri Valley, not only tweaks Swalwell in his own backyard, but It may also represent a move to get a head start on Khanna and his $1 million in campaign contributions, but on a whole slew of potential contenders. They include Pleasanton Mayor Jennifer Hosterman, Dublin Mayor Tim Sbranti and likely Swalwell, recast as a grizzled veteran of one congressional campaign and—don’t count her out—Assemblywoman Mary Hayashi.


  1. When I saw the Pleasanton Weekly article I was actually stunned; how incredibly disrespectful to Pete in the last 25 days of the campaign. I don't know how to tell Ellen this but he already announced a year ago, I remember the day very, very well. A second announcement a year later - give me a break. If she thinks announcing now gives her a leg up against Khanna then she is as delusional as I thought she was (I love it when I'm proven right). Ro already has so many legs up (his education, eriudition, his respect of community, his fundraising). Ro really should put Corbett on his payroll - she is the best secret weapon he has.

  2. It's alright Ellem Corbett has always proven a disrespectful cheater as she the original member of the San leandro carpetbagger society!

  3. Ro Khanna is a political whore unto himself. He is a carpetbagger who has 'gone shopping' for a congressional spot for years. He 'landed' in San Mateo County years ago and challenged the late, great Tom Lantos and was decimated. Since there was no opening for him there to exploit, he picked up to shop around some more.

    I won't miss a beat between now and 2014 if Stark wins, which is questionable at best, to point out what a shill and yesterday's news Khanna is!

  4. And from the Pete Stark camp...we hear nothing.
    (about this or anything)

    How do you comment when you are fighting for survival, portraying yourself as a vibrant member of congress, when all those "supporting" you are already picking over your bones.

    Or did I miss Pete Stark's announcement that while he is capable enought to represent the district for 2 years, he will then have a completely empty gas tank, too old to run in 2014.
    What does that make him in 2012? A overly ripe, but not quite rotten banana?

  5. Mayor Sbranti is running for State Assembly in 2014. Corbett was a big chicken and should have run this year but she would not stand up to Demo party and Big Labor. Ro is a carpetbagger, period.

  6. Senator Corbett will have the support of the mainstream labor, nurses, party loyalists.
    She is popular among the voters. Rho will have none of those except big money outside the District. Run Ellen run!

  7. But what about Pete running in 2014.

    After all it was only recently that Ro said about Pete "He's as sharp as ever in discussing issues"
    Why dump him in 2014 being as sharp as he is now?

    Or are Ro, Corbett and Hosterman all really saying that Pete's brain is "cooked", but lets let him warm the congressional seat for over 2 more years while we prepare to battle?

  8. Always lovely to hear from a Corbett staffer especially when they have no idea what they are talking about. Ro Khanna - a carpetbagger - give me a break. Khanna has lived in the Bay Area since leaving Yale Law, has lived in Fremont for a decade, moved here because he has extended family that he visited as a kid and feel in love with the place and he left only temporarily to answer the invitation of a guy called "The President of the United States" to serve in the Commerce Department. (More than either Corbett or Torrico can say). Since coming home last year he serves on the Board of Directors at I-Gate, Innovation Tri-Valley and Planned Parenthood Mar Monte. He brought funding back to the area for the Nummi Retraining Center. Sounds like an East Bay Guy to me.

  9. Ro is still a carpet bagger but now lives in fremont

  10. I seriously want to understand your carpetbagger stand - explain please

  11. evidently living in Fremont for the last 8+years makes him ma carpetbagger because he has lived elsewhere.
    Think Chris Crow wrote that comment

  12. Whoever wrote it needs to sit down with Khanna for coffee - easy to contact him on his thru his website. It will be worth his/her time even if you come away not liking him and his experience.

  13. From NOT a Corbett staffer, just a supporter and volunteer precinct walker. She has more shoes on the ground and local support - than anyone else who could hope to take Pete's office. Word is he has agreed that this is his last term.

  14. Carpetbaggers? C'mon you jackasses. Pete Stark is the biggest frickin carpetbagger ever. The bum never lived in the District. EVER!!!

  15. I will say it again - sit down with him, even if you decide to not support the guy just give him a chance - always good to know your opponent and he is always willing to sit down with anyone - what do you have to lose?


    Ro has not lived in Fremnt for "a decade". He worked in DC from Aug 2009- Aug 2011. And he ran against Lantos in 2004 so I assume he lived in San Mateo County but maybe he ran while living in Fremont and carpetbagged to San Mateo to run. He's his Linkin profile:


  17. Corbett's staffers are too busy to post here. Too busy cleaning her house, watering her lawn, packing her household items and moving her apartment, taking care of her adult son, checking her campaign mail box for contributions, handling her financial affairs - all on state time or should be state time.

  18. Corbett IS A CARPET BAGGER TOO. DO YOUR HOMEWORK!When is she moving out of San Leandro? I know lots of people that will help her pack. San Leandro tax payers have been paying for everything. Cars, gas, cell phones, trips, vacations and God only knows what else!!! There may be people that love her, but there's plenty of people that can't stand her. Good Riddens. Can't wait till she's gone. Why didn't she run against Barbara Lee? Is she scared?

  19. Don't forget the expensive furniture she had to buy at city hall when she was Mayor of San Leandro, all on the tax payers dime. She sure is good at spening tax payers $$$$$$$. Check it out!

  20. Ro on KQED Forum this morning at 9:00 AM with Krasny.

    Talking about bringing back manufacturing jobs to America. He spoke about local manufacturing jobs with trained technicians paying $60,000 a year.
    Then when a caller questioned why a person would train for that when local governments were spending $175,000 per year to hire police and fire, Ro then said police and fire median salary was only $60,000 to $70,000.
    (he actually heard the caller and knew what the caller was talking about, but chose to give a political answer referring ONLY to the base salary. Even there, his example bore no relationship to local police and fire salaries)

    I guess Ro doesn't live in Fremont afte all.
    A median police or fire officer in Fremont would be over $100,000 per year, and cost the city what the caller stated, about $175,000 for total cost of employment.

    BTW, Ro's "support" of Pete in that conversation was tepid at best. Trying to please all sides.

    Oh, his reason for being on the show, was to promote the book, and mostly himself.
    He said we can still make blenders in the USA...if they are specially designed for Starbucks, as Vitamix does.

    I remember the line in The Graduate, "plastics"..
    Now Ro's advice for young people "blenders".

  21. Ro shopped around for a congressional spot in 2004, when he ran against Tom Lanto of San Mateo County. He was decimated in the primary. He decided not to compete against Jackie Speier after Lantos' death. Finally decided to look for an opening in the east bay and supports Stark ONLY because to support Swalwell is to forfeit any opportunity to be a contender himself, either in 2014 or later.


  22. I think the facts are in order. Ro moved to Fremont in 2008, not a decade as some of his die hard supporters suggest. That said, he has family here, and he certainly had no idea back then what the district lines would look like in 2014. Ro has been involved deeply in his community -helping with NUMMI, with We The People, with numerous Boards in the Tri Valley.

    Ro did run against Lantos. But, he ran to oppose the war in Iraq and Patriot Act. Frankly, his principled stand and work on economic issues is why President Obama appointed him in his Administration.

    I do think anyone who wants to run in the district should live in the district. Ro does. Eric Swalwell certainly does. Hosterman does. Corbett lives in San leandro. She simply as a matter of fact doesn't live in the district, and is truly trying to carpetbag because of a bad break in redistricting.

    My guess is Ro or Eric will end up representing the area. The district will go with young blood who lives in the area.

  23. Uh, not to bring up a uncomfortable point, but prior to 2014, there is actually a election for that same seat. You know, Nov. 6th.
    Perhaps Ro and Corbett should start counting votes on the 7th.

  24. No. Ro ran to carpetbag. I don't buy that crap for a minute. You want to oppose 'whatever,' go demonstrate in Berkeley! As for Obama--his like the rest was a political appointment, nothing more; nothing less.

    Bottom line is he thought that he could shop around and find a way into congress. It's legal, but it doesn't work for me. I won't be supporting him now or down the line. He's an opportunist!

  25. Ro got an appointment in the Obama Administration because he raised a ton of money for Pelosi. He raised a ton of money for Pelosi because that's the price you have to pay when you take on a long standing congressional incumbent, and you want to try to stay relevant in Democratic Politics. He ran against a long standing congressional incumbent because he only wants to start at the top, without having to work his way up.

    Wow, we could go on forever there. The fact is, that Ro has been meeting with some very influential people in politics, and he's basically telling them, "I'm next in line because the Party owes this to the Indian Community."

    That's a direct quote. He believes this seat is owed to him. He's an entitled, arrogant, poser. And he thinks he can buy the 2014 election.

    Ro, you've been doing some great stuff on the PR front. But to win the hearts and minds of activists, leaders, and those on the front lines that make things happen, well you've got to roll up your sleeves, and show up a couple of times when there are no fucking TV cameras around.

    Show up to help out. Show that you're a hard worker, even if you aren't going to get a quote, a headline, or any credit.

    And stop saying people owe the Indian community.

    No one owes anyone anything.

  26. Corbett moved to Fremont recently, check the public records.

  27. His forthcoming autobiography was going to be entitled "Me, Myself, and I." Unfortunately for him, he learned that that was already taken by Newsom!

    It's ALL about Ro!

  28. Good one, 9:49 pm, good one!
    Oh sooooo true.

  29. Ro is not a carpetbagger or an opportunist he is really more of a ..... carpetunist

  30. 8.26: And that is the very definition of a carpetbagger, one that moves from one locality to another for political expediency. Ro Khanna has lived in Fremont for 8 years - Ellen Corbett has lived her for about 15 minutes. Whose the real carpetbagger?

  31. Corbett and Ro are both party cookie cutter machine carpetbaggers..do diff.

  32. Joel - Fremont VoterOctober 16, 2012 at 8:24 AM

    I'm surprised by the comment here, "brave" given it's anonymity. Sounds like it's a Corbett staffer. Frankly, in all my years of following local, regional and national politics, I've never heard of a Democrat announcing his/her candidacy for an election during a predecessor's race. That's surely going to impress fellow elected officials who are running their races. Nice team player there. I'm sure you're going to get a lot of support from the CA Congressional Delegation there.

    Also, I think I just read or heard that Corbett moved recently from San Leandro to Fremont so she could announce as a "resident" of the district. That's pretty impressive carpetbagging.

    Look, I'm sure Ellen's jealous that others might be interested in a seat that she thinks is hers. That other candidates might have earned more respect from Congressional peers than she does. That the business community might be more interested in other candidates views, policies than hers. And lord knows, fundraisers and donors don't find her an attractive candidate at all (good luck raising the millions needed to win and represent the district). And from what Anonymous says, it sounds like she might have some ethnic politics issues that she needs to resolve. As Rosie Perez so eloquently stated this week in a Moveon.org ad criticizing Romney for regretting not being born of Mexican parents so he could more easily win the Latino vote, Ro Khanna can't do anything about his ethnicity and I, for one, would love to see the South Asian community better represented in Congress, whether by Ro or someone else.

    Rather than try to tear down Mr Khanna with supposed quotes that aren't sourced (an extremely weak editorial effort, Anonymous), I think Corbett needs to try to work on her positives. I'm a proud resident of this district and I research what's going on in politics in the area. And if Ro Khanna wants to run in 2014, so be it. I will look at his background as carefully as I do Ellen Corbett's. That said, to write an impressive book on innovation and manufacturing and be promoted as an expert as such should be applauded, not criticized. I heard him on NPR this morning and was thoroughly impressed. I was also surprised to hear him speak on behalf of the President as a campaign surrogate a few months back. He handled himself and his defense of the President very well.

    If he manages his "campaign" (he hasn't declared anything yet, right? I've actively seen him supporting Stark fighting for his reelection), as well as he has demonstrated his professional, political and community activities, I'm pretty sure he'll earn my vote. I'm just tired of hearing Ms. Corbett complaining about him, his background, his support and his ethnicity as if they are weaknesses. They're not and it makes her look small and underserving of the office. If Ellen Corbett wants my vote then she needs to tell me more about her positives.

    Guys like me see through comments areas like this one "Anonymous". (i.e., Ellen or staffer).

  33. Guys like you couldn't see the light of day if was staring directly at them.

  34. Joel, Fremont Voter...

    "Frankly, in all my years of following local, regional and national politics, I've never heard of a Democrat announcing his/her candidacy for an election during a predecessor's race"

    Welcome to CD-15 where Ro, Corbett and the party insider crowd decided to prop up a candidate who is so feeble that he can no longer be counted on to appear in public without a major gaffe.

    So yes, in most places you wouldn't see local candidates essentially saying, "oh our current candidate is past his 'pull-date' but elect him once more so that we can run in 2 years and not face a incumbent"

    They are already packing Pete Stark up, moving his furniture out, and measuring for new drapes.
    All that awaits is the van for the old folks home to pick Pete up.
    THAT is the attitude that Ro and Corbett have about the current incumbent. Despite Ro's absurd comments that "Pete is as sharp as ever"... Oh my!

  35. Dan White in Castro ValleyOctober 16, 2012 at 3:32 PM

    Reading this article for the first time and just noticed something strange. 35 comments posted so far. 34 comments from people hiding behind a "Anonymous" tag.

    I would like to make a suggestion to Steven Tavares. Steven, I really enjoy your blog. But many of the comments that are posted by others are ignorant, disrespectful, and shameful. People who post should hold some accountability for their comments instead of hiding behind an anonymous tag all of the time. It's a joke.

    In the future, maybe consider requiring that anyone who wants to post a comment on any of your articles, has to use their Facebook account? Much like what the Mercury News does. You can't post a comment anonymously there. If you don't post with your Facebook account, you can't post period.

    Just a friendly suggestion. Mortified at many of the comments that I have read on your blog entries. Quite frankly, I don't know how some of these posters sleep at night. They should be ashamed of themselves.

    Anyway, just my two cents. Keep up the great work!

  36. Ro was a nice guy, but now he is run by the Indian Mafia based out of fremont lead by Yogi Chugh. The Indian Mafia is working hard to crack heads and bulldoze the community. Ro had to sell his sole to get the support of these goons.

  37. this is the same garbage being spewed by the anti-indo campaign in fremont right now. enough of the race politics in one of the most diverse areas of the country. you see this happening in the mayor's race - and now for a potential post-stark era race? enough already.

    and indian mafia? can we please just get rid of the torrico acolytes once and for all?

  38. Dan White in Castro Valley. Brilliant idea there Dan. Yes, by all means, make everyone join Facebook to express their opinion.
    Then end up with the massive participation you see following most Tribune, Daily Review, and Argus articles.
    Oh yeah, your method really invites people to say what they mean.
    The same type of bravery we see throughout Alameda County political circles when it came to issues like the digusting behavior of Mary Hayashi.
    Everyone so afraid Mary might survive that they all remained silent despite her shameful act.

    How about folks who don't choose to be Zuckerites?
    I guess they don't get to post at all?

    Sorry, you Steven knows your suggestion is the kiss of death for open exchange.

    Ever hear of Thomas Paine? What name did he use when he published Common Sense?

  39. I have also seen the organizIng of an Indian committee that is composed of five Indian leaders with big egos. Ro has cut some deals with them to raise the large amount of money that he has raised. Unfortunately, this group doesn't understand that the congress member needs to represent everyone and not just one group. Yogi Chugh is riding the coat tails of Ro Khanna, but is dragging him down with all of his baggage. The race politics in Fremont has been injected by this group and must stop.

  40. I wouldn't bet against Corbett, she's faced formidable and well funded opponents before. Plus she's represented Fremont for 6 plus years now. Not sure carpetbagger fits here.

    What happened to the Tahmasbi reference? did it get deleted? the rumor is she wants to be the Assemblymember in 2016

  41. Exactly what distance move is it that qualifies one to be a carpetbagger?

    The average American moves something like ever 5 years.
    A nation of carpetbaggers. Then you have someone like Stark who doesn't even really live in the district, or California for that matter.

    A Marylander by heart. Well thats how his family members describe themselves.

  42. Cindy Corrello HilkeOctober 17, 2012 at 4:58 PM

    5:41 and 7:09 (and I am willing to bet it's Trisha Tahmasbi), It is obvious that you do not know Ro Khanna in the slightest. I have a long standing friendship with him and know him to be one of the most highly principled men it has ever been my privilege to know. Do some of the men in the Indian community come with baggage - yes. Ro Khanna is not one of them - if he were I would not be a supporter let alone a friend. It is time for the racism against this community to stop.

    Ro believes in integrity - the kind of integrity that says "I'm going to do what's right even when no one is looking". He believes that the pursuit of public office is an honorable and noble way in which one can serve his community. It is simply one of the greatest honors of my life to call him a friend. And I sign my name to this - Cindy Corrello Hilke

  43. Cindy, good of you to mention Ro's inegrity.

    I always know I can trust what he says as being authentic.

    For example, back in May, about Pete Stark, he said the following "He's as sharp as ever in discussing issues"

    Yes, and Ro even said it with a straight face.

  44. Cindy Corrello Hilke,

    Aren't you on Ro's payroll and a paid shill? Haven't you had issues with the Indo men that surround Ro? Tell the truth now...it will set you free.

  45. Cindy Corrello HilkeOctober 17, 2012 at 9:40 PM

    I am not now nor have I ever been on his paid staff - hell, there is no paid staff at all. We have been close friends for a number of years. I do the work I do for him out of deep respect and a belief in shared ethos and political points of view. But beyond that, he is just one of the nicest guys I have ever known. My husband and son feel the same. Sometimes people do something for another person simply because of friendship and belief and never expect anything out of it. Sorry to disappoint you - Cindy Corrello Hilke

  46. Corbett is a carpet bagger. She lives or lived in San Leandro. If she'd stayed in SL she would have to run against Barbara Lee!

  47. Politicians are politicians and it is very difficult to believe them because this crowd is full of liars.

    corbett park hotels

  48. Cindy, between you and Ro's Indian brigade, Ro's legitimacy is plummeting. Please consider acting as a "silent partner" in this effort. You are not helping the matter. Ro needs an effective, professional, and credible entourage; not a pack of monkeys arguing over who gets to tuck him in at night. While you're loyalty is much appreciated and noticed, you should probably fade into the background and allow Ro to do what he needs to do.

  49. Cindy Corrello HilkeOctober 21, 2012 at 10:46 AM

    Obviously I am "effective, professional and credible" or you wouldn't be as pissed off as you are.

    To refer to Ro's South Asian supporters as "monkeys" is reminiscent of the worst days of the KKK. How sad for you.

  50. Tim Sbranti would be great in US congress. I hope he runs in 2014 if Slawall doesn't win. Tim would have beaten Stark this year for sure.

  51. Voted for Ellen Corbett because I can't stand Swalwell's lies.