CA Democrat Uses Race Bating, Gay Baiting In New Mailer

This election cycle is so nasty, even members of the same party are at each others’ throats. In a mailer that went out to voters in Los Angeles’ 27th District, supporters of Rep. Brad Sherman bash opponent Howard Berman for being too lefty. He tried to convey this by including ominous shots of Sen. Barbara Boxer and Representatives Maxine Waters and Barney Frank.

As Buzzfeed reports, some feel the inclusion was fear-mongering, using Waters and Frank to stir up racist and homophobic sentiment. (Boxer is also known as a staunch supporter of the environment and women’s rights.)

For years, Republicans have used all three politicians as bogeymen of the left in advertisements and speeches to motivate conservative voters.

But their inclusion in a mailer backing Democratic candidate has raised eyebrows in Democratic circles, and drew a sharp rebuke from Berman’s camp.

“We were shocked to see a mailer like this. We find it offensive,” said Brandon Hall, a senior Berman advisor.

Beneath this “hit list,” Sherman rattles off the local Republican politicos who have endorsed him, including State Assemblyman Cameron Smyth and L.A. City Council members Mitch Englander and Dennis Zine.

Um, is that supposed to win you votes? We get that you’re trying to show that you can reach across the aisle, but you’re a Democrat and your voter base is Democratic. Showing how the GOP just loooves you—and giving the finger to your party leaders—might not be the way to go.

Ironically, the ad was paid for by a group calling itself Californians for Integrity in Government.

Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #bradsherman #california #election stories and more


  • jeff4justice

    1) Because of redistricting they are now running for Congressional District 30.

    2) This just shows how fucked up the TOP 2 general election laws are so for the love of God if you’re in Arizona vote NO on Prop. 121!

    Reducing voter choice to the top 2 in general elections means you could have 2 Democrats, or 2 Republicans running against each-other – as it does in this example with the guys in this story. As I suspected, it means some Democrats will have to now move to the right to compete.

    It also reduces the odds that alternative parties can ever defeat the corporately controlled 2-party system charade.

  • stadacona

    I had to do some research to properly understand this article. Apparently in California, only the two highest vote getting politicians in all primaries in each district can run in the final election even if they are from the same party…how insane and undemocratic is that?

  • JDJase

    @stadacona: Insane, yes. Undemocratic? uh, hardly…normal system is limited people (members of the individual parties) vote for their nominees in the primaries, and then in the general election everybody gets to vote on who the private parties picked. In California’s system, EVERYBODY votes for anyone they want in the primary, the top 2 vote getters go on to the general where EVERYBODY votes again…so arguably, it’s MORE democratic.

    That said, I agree the top-two system is dumb. Washington State also uses this system, and switching to this system is on the ballot in Arizona this year.

  • jeff4justice

    @JDJase: TOP 2 laws in WA, CA and on the ballot in AZ reduce voter choice.

    The tradeoff is an open primary (more choice) for a top 2 general election (less choice).

    How about both an open primary and open general election??? That’s more choice.

    The TOP 2 laws are a desperate attempt by the 2-party system that knows their incompetency is becoming less and less tolerated.

    While the handful of corporately controlled media clings to being a tool of the 2party system, alternative media is showing more and more people whether conservative, liberal or libertarian are fed up with the same 2 dumb options. Top 2 just ensures the richest candidates and the 2-party system has a more solidified stranglehold on the election process.

  • Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi

    The mailer was done by an independent expenditure, not by Rep. Brad Sherman. Any suggestion that Rep. Sherman doesn’t support equal rights, civil rights, marital rights, healthcare fairness and dignity is false! Rep. Brad Sherman is also MUCH better on constituent service as well. He’s not constantly off on international junkets — often paid by special interests. Brad Sherman shows up for votes in Congress, and meets with his constituents at home. Rep. Sherman supports dignity and human rights, and has done more than 140 town meetings on the issues of jobs, healthcare, social security and so much more! Vote Sherman, not Berman!

  • erasure25

    The 30th congressional district is very odd to me as it includes portions of West Hollywood (the gayest city in America), Beverly Hills, Malibu, Santa Monica, West LA(generally liberal areas) as well as the extreme west San Fernando valley and east Ventura county (conservative areas). A conservative will never win this district though because it is by far dominated by liberals. Whatever this flyer implies, both candidates are pro-gay. Needless to say, this district has money, hence the all out brawl between the two…

  • hockeyfan

    So why has Sherman never complied with the requirements of the Lilly Ledbetter law in his own office. As far as constintuent service, Howard Berman’s office has been named by polls of political aides as consistently among the most effective offices at constituent services on the hill. His Chief of staff is a lesbian which shows an openess that few members have and he has been a consistent supporter of equal rights. Sherman on the other hand has waffled on everything from “Don’t ask, Don’t tell” to gay marriage to anything controversial that might come before him. He is the ultimate weathervane who takes a poll on everything.

  • politicaljunky

    Ugh Jennifer Lazlo Mizrahi is a Brad Sherman lackey. She’s is so far up his ass she’ll never see him for what he really is: OUT FOR HIMSELF. He wants to be a Congressman for the sake of being a Congressman and not put in place good legislation for the people he represents. He is an empty suit that spends his whole day figuring out who he should tap for money. That’s why he’s amassed more than 2 million dollars – he’s spend 10 years raising it. Help us all if this man is elected to represent us!

  • hockeyfan

    It goes further that Mizrahi being a Sherman lackey. Lets understand the difference between the two candidates.

    Howard Berman was given credit by Sheldon Andelson for getting him appointed as the first openly gay judge in California.

    Howard Berman wrote the first bill in the state legislature and has also fought while he has been in Congress for the right of gay couples to marry.

    Howard Berman got a bill passed in the California legislature that prohibited discrimination against gays in property sales.

    Howard Berman was one of the three biggest fundraisers against the Briggs initiative.

    Howard Berman as chair of the foreign affairs committee has fought for funding to fight Aids in Africa and just this year forced the Prime Minister of Botswana to remove an anti-gay cabinet member who was calling for violence against gay Africans by threatening to cut off their foreign aid.

    Howard Berman has had numerous gay staffers throughout his career in politics and was the third member of the California State Assembly to hire an openly gay staffer.

    The list could go on and on, but it doesn’t need to when you compare him with his opponent Brad Sherman who waffled on every gay issue from gay marriage to don’t ask, don’t tell when he thoought he was in a marginal district, even though most experts thought he had a safe seat and who still hasn’t played an important role in any piece of legislation that was important to the gay community. The choice should be clear cut and I think someone would have to be out of their mind not to vote for Berman. JMO!


    Who is that FuckFace???.

Comments are closed.