I must admit that Sheryl Gay Stohlberg of The New York Times scooped me by five months on the Amanda Renteria of Sanger, California (Central Valley, near Delano) for Congress story.
I met Amanda last night at a taco klatch in Portola Valley, an event anticipating the 250th anniversary of Portola discovering Palo Alto while looking for Monterey, coming in 2019.
That I said to her “Did you overlap with Michael McFaul (class of 1985) at Stanford?” meant that I sensed something Presidential in this future congress member, who is about 38 to McFaul (and my own) 50 or so.
I caught up with Michael who I knew slightly from his salad days, for the first time in 32 years and it kinda blew my mind.
For Amanda, who is also a chief of staff for the Senator from Michigan, I humbly suggested she bring into her fold Sid Espinosa, our former mayor, from Gilroy, a former Clinton speechwriter, and Greg Zlotnick, a water expert, a registered Dem although he was Pete Wilson’s water advisor.
I improvised to get to this event, at a private residence, thanks to Phyllis (who endorses Mark Weiss for City Council) and her associate Lindsay Carr Griffith Farino, who is part of a woman’s Democratic caucus. It reminded me that my dearest mumsy, Barbara Weiss was part of something called “20-20” led by Brenna Bolger which sought to get 20 percent of all elected roles filled by women “by 2020”, from 1990 or so.
Anna Eshoo was also in the house, but was spirited away before I could greet her. I attended the Clinton swearing in, the one that featured Maya Angelou, thanks to Anna (and the fact that my parents are among her backers).
This is too tangential, but yesterday when Karen Holman (the incumbent, I endorse) had lunch at Togo’s, I mentioned having worked for Tom Campbell in 1988 who ran against Eshoo — I walked a precinct with Gunn / Stanford tennis legend Stephanie Savides — Steph’s district, bordering that of the Weissi, and I told Karen, who shared a joke with me about being “heard” vs. “herd” that one of the reasons Anna lost that race, or so we believed over there at Campbell central, was a mailer that said “We are challenging the sacred cows” and had a picture of a bovine. Why not just a picture of the candidate? People were joking that it’s not a good idea to confuse the voters on whether the candidate looks like Elsie.
To the extent that Anna lost and is now found, I am still optimistic about my third try here in Palo Alto. Meanwhile, I do not have the eye or ear for Central Valley congress races as I do for Future Farmer recording artists, but I was fairly “wowed” by Amanda Renteria, and wish I could vote for her.
I put her up there in my pantheon with Elizabeth Warren and Zephyr Teachout, as real comers.
Tim and Greg of the Mother Hips (one-time Future Farmers) would probably “Pull Us All Together” and stump for Amanda Renteria:
and1: four months later: judge Griffin Bonini, a former Gunn Titan hoops star (to my championship, from the bench, so to speak) said the other day that his twin Colin Bonini worked on a Tom Campbell campaign while still at Nixon Elemtary, trumping my 1988.