One thing is certain in the race for the mayor of Chula Vista, whomever it is, it will be a Hispanic. This will be first time in memory that we will have a Hispanic as a mayor of a major city in San Diego. The three candidates running for office are Petra Barajas, Steve Padilla, and Mary Salas.
With three candidates in the race to become mayor the winning candidate must have over 50% of the vote. If no one candidate receives over 50% then the top two voter getters will face-off in November. With that said, the race, in reality, comes down to two candidates Mary Salas and Steve Padilla. The third candidate Petra Barajas, is not a viable, who has not presented a platform nor does she have the experience to lead the second largest city in San Diego county. Barajas will not draw many votes. So in all likelyhood the mayor will be selected in the Primary, Tuesday, March 5.
In evaluating the two candidates both Salas and Padilla posses equal qualifications when it comes to experience, intelligence, desire, and commitment. Both have worked well serving the city as councilpersons and both have similar platforms and visions for the City. What seperates Salas and Padilla is the ability to represent the whole city.
What we find disturbing with the candidacy of Steve Padilla is the lack of Hispanic support from within the City of Chula Vista. In reviewing the donor list and endorsement list we were disappointed to note that in a city whose population is 51% Hispanic, Mr. Padilla did not present a broadbase support. He is heavly supported by the status quo. This was highlighted with his support of ex-Port Commissioner, David Malcom. Where Mary Salas was calling for Malcom's resignation early in the game, Padilla chose to stick with the good ol' boys and support Malcom. It was not until after the fact when any association with Malcom was political death, did Padilla support the call for his resignation.
While we have not agreed with everything Mary Salas has done in the past, she has continually shown here commitment to the Hispanic community which is reflected in her broadbase support. Ms. Salas has worked with and developed an effective relationship with all segements of community. This tells us that she will represent the whole city and continue the networking with the Hispanic community, continue the political and economical development for the Hispanic community that comes from equal representation.
Another thing that we like about Mary Salas, is that she is a fighter and when it comes to leading a city you want a fighter on your side. For these reasons we endorse Mary Salas as the next mayor for the City of Chula Vista.