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McNerney wins re-election but opponent won't concede

Original post made on Nov 26, 2010

Congressman Jerry McNerney (D-Pleasanton) has clearly won his re-election bid against Republican challenger David Harmer, finishing a full 1% ahead of Harmer with almost all absentee and provisional votes counted in the four counties the district covers.

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, November 26, 2010, 8:54 AM

Comments (26)

Posted by Chet
a resident of Danville
on Nov 26, 2010 at 9:16 am

Our fine Congressman Jerry McNerney is correctly being rewarded for all his hard work for all of us in District 11 with his election. We again will have Jerry working for us all in Washington D.C.

Posted by Harald A. Bailey
a resident of another community
on Nov 26, 2010 at 11:57 am

Dear Dolores,

Thanks to Jeb Bing for this update.

I was surprised that David Harmer could only achieve a 92 vote margin in South Contra Costa County during a year of Tea Party upsets. API and other news services provided explanation as growing moderate voting among the majority and greater diversity in the population. The shift seems to be driven by voters independently informing themselves on the economics related to candidate choices and relying little on published or social media for presentation of candidates.

Additionally, politics on facebook and twitter have been viewed by California voters in polling as biased and untrustworthy. Sarah Palin's overall commentary via social media during the election campaigns had a negative impact on California Tea Party and GOP candidates according the news service polling.

It does present an interesting picture going in the 2012 elections. It will be hard to determine how California might emerge as the maker of the President and Congress, by example, in 2012 as we become a primary economy in USAmerica's recovery.

Your readers' thoughts will be interesting reading.

Posted by Citizen Paine
a resident of Danville
on Nov 26, 2010 at 12:58 pm

It'll be interesting to see how the money gets spent in the next election. The Supremes have abandoned all pretense regarding corporate and union money contributions, which should aid Republicans, on balance -- but in the age of TiVo and its kin, TV commercials can be fast-forwarded, or at least muted, with blessed impunity. For example, I suspect that many voters tuned-out Ms Whitman's aggressive and jarring attack ads after a while, such that they literally fell on deaf ears. Money badly spent, methinks.

There are only a few commercials that I will sit-through these days, and they're mostly humorous -- the rabbits/baby-rattler, the baby investor in solitary, and the wood-chucking woodchucks being prime among them. Maybe Fox and MSNBC will also abandon pretense and become formal, paid mouthpieces for their respective ideologies?

How the web figures-in is beyond me. Anyone?

In others news, the site's spam filter below seems to claim you mis-typed any time you take long enough to try and develop a worthwhile posting to the thread. Can that period be lengthened?

Posted by jrm
a resident of Vista Grande Elementary School
on Nov 26, 2010 at 4:30 pm

jrm is a registered user.

I am amused that the carpetbagger three time loser finds requests that he finally concede to be "unseemly"...

Posted by Citizen Paine
a resident of Danville
on Nov 26, 2010 at 6:23 pm

I believe the refusal to concede and the 'recount' chatter have nothing to do with the outcome, and everything to do with the campaign fund. Once he concedes, there's no hope of further contributions.

Just a guess.

Posted by Bill
a resident of Danville
on Nov 29, 2010 at 7:01 am

The party of "NO" keeps chugging along. No, I won't concede, No, to extension of unemployment benefits, No to eliminating tax breaks for multi- millionaires. Completely amazing.

Posted by Hal
a resident of another community
on Nov 29, 2010 at 7:05 am

Dear Dolores,

I received distribution of political research this AM from news services that illustrated political party status for the November elections. GOP confirms and reports that David Harmer lost his election and, in affect, concedes the election for him.

The more interesting question remains with the proceeds of the campaign fund. The research indicated that such funds remain with the candidate but GOP commentary indicated that the party was gathering the remaining funds for further campaign purposes including shortfalls in other campaigns.

That should make an interesting follow-up for you.

Posted by Neutral
a resident of Alamo
on Nov 29, 2010 at 7:07 am

Now that he has lost three consecutive races for congress in 3 different districts maybe he will give up. This marked Harmer's third congressional run in three separate congressional districts.n He previously lost congressional races in California's 10th district in 2009 and Utah's 2nd district in 1996.

Just pondering, wonder if his acknowledged LDS Mormon religion was a benefit or problem in his political career? Or perhaps his ties to WaMu and the federal bailout funds he received in his severence package did him in?

Posted by Tim
a resident of Danville
on Nov 29, 2010 at 8:35 am

Maybe our good friend Mr Harmer should remember that San Joaquin County is only 1 of the 4 counties that make up the 11th District and if he wants to claim fraud in a county he won so be it. Maybe McNerney will win that county in a recount. Besides it is pretty funny for Harmer to rely on a county he doesn't even live in (forget about the fact that he doesn't even live in the district). I don't think it is the fact that he is a Mormon that hurt him. I think it is the fact that his policies are out of the mainstream with his constituents, so much so that many of the Republican mayors and leaders in the 11th district supported McNerney. Harmer is 0-3 now, maybe he should find another passion, like public school teacher.

Posted by spcwt
a resident of Danville
on Nov 29, 2010 at 9:24 am

You guys are such gloaters. Okay, McNerney won. Go ahead and run your victory lap already. Woo hoo. Yawn.

Hopefully at least now McNerney will do something positive, like keep the Republicans in line.

Next time, maybe the Republicans will nominate a moderate candidate that will stand a good chance of defeating McNerney. This is the Bay Area, for crying out loud, not Utah. Hey, Republicans, what were you thinking?

I hope McNerney got the message that a lot of us don’t like it when our government spends money we don’t have on things like pointless wars and Obamacare.

I’m still waiting for JRM and you other McNerney apologists to explain where we’re going to get all the money to pay for all the goodies McNerney voted for. [Portion removed due to disrespectful comment]Have any of you guys ever balanced a checkbook?

Posted by Tim
a resident of Danville
on Nov 29, 2010 at 11:30 am

Of course we can't pay for those, we still need to pay for two wars that were off the books for the first 5 years, a prescription drug bill that was unfunded, two tax cuts that didn't help anyone except for the wealthy, and a huge expansion of the government payroll that started in 2001. I hate it when people like McNerney vote for bills that actually help people in this country and have a mechanism to pay for them. We should only have our politicians vote on things that don't pay for themselves, like extending tax cuts that don't help anyone but the wealthy. McNerney is screwing up the Republican plan

Posted by spcwt
a resident of Danville
on Nov 29, 2010 at 12:38 pm


I couldn’t agree with you more about those stupid wars, the unfunded tax cuts, unfunded prescription drug benefits, etc. Republicans are a joke. That’s one reason I voted for McNerney in 2006 and could not stomach voting for McCain in 2008.

But Obamacare is not “funded.” To make it look like it’s paid for, the big benefits don’t kick in until 2014, yet taxes to pay for it kick in this coming year. So it has 10 years of taxes to pay for 6 years of benefits. The Congressional budgeting process only has to forecast out to 10 years in order to claim that it’s “paid for.” After 10 years, then how do you pay for it? Raise taxes? Cut even more out of Medicare and Social Security?

And how could McNerney vote for Obamacare when it places special taxes on people making $250,000 a year because “they’re rich.” Since when is $250,000 rich? Not here in Danville.

Posted by C. R. Mudgeon
a resident of Danville
on Nov 29, 2010 at 1:56 pm

What will be interesting in 2012 is the impact of re-districting, now supposedly under the auspices of a non-partisan committee, instead of the CA state legislature.

The 11th Congressional District is almost a parody of gerrymandering, with pieces in three counties (or maybe even 4?).

I may be wrong on this, but I think I read that no incumbents lost in CA this past election, where they were running for their same seat. (This may have been in regards to the state Assembly and state Senate, in which case some incumbents would have been precluded from running by term limits.) But here in the Bay Area I think it is also true that all Congressional incumbents won, aided in many cases by "protective" districts.

Another victory for the status quo!

Posted by jrm
a resident of Vista Grande Elementary School
on Nov 29, 2010 at 2:12 pm

jrm is a registered user.

Yo Mud...I agree with you on the welcome revision of gerrymandered districts and the likely impact on incumbents, I hope the desired effect will be the outcome.
[Portion removed due to disrespectful comment] I have balanced a check book a few times in the course of a 28 year career in healthcare. As I read your thoughts I am reminded of a favorite quote I once read attributed to Abraham Lincoln, upon feuding with a Union General he remarked "I don't like that man very much, I need to get to know him better" tell me, what makes a guy like you tick? What level of education do you have, what profession are you engaged in and what do you do for fun besides grinding your axe all the time?

Posted by spcwt
a resident of Danville
on Nov 29, 2010 at 2:59 pm


I am just an ordinary citizen, frustrated that there are so few responsible Democrats and Republicans in Washington.

McNerney and everyone else can see that we are headed for a fiscal train wreck, but all the DC crowd wants to do is spend, spend, spend on wars, new entitlements like Obamacare, tax cuts for people like Bill Gates and tax credits for things like cars that run on fairy dust and other nonsense.

Nearly half the country pays no income tax at all, yet like spoiled children they demand all sorts of goodies, like the healthcare credit that McNerney gave to people who earn up to $88,000 a year. I’m sorry, but if you’re making that much, you don’t need me to pay your healthcare premium.

Meanwhile, the super wealthy pay practically no taxes. How? First, they limit their wages, living instead off capital gains that are taxed at 15%. But of course they don’t even pay capital gains taxes either if they’re smart, as they can afford good tax planners, who can help them manufacture capital losses that offset capital gains. Capital losses also carry forward indefinitely, assuring taxes are minimized well into the future. And their gains may never be subject to income tax at all if passed to heirs. (There may be an estate tax hit, but that too can be minimized with proper tax planning).

The suckers are those of us who earn wages. We are carrying the tax load for everyone else. Sales guys get the worst of it. You might have a good year and make $350,000+ etc., and pay high taxes, but then have some down years where you’re just getting by, making $80,000. Yet, they call you rich. How is that fair?

The people in the Bay Area have it the worst, and McNerney seems to be out to lunch on this point. While we might make more than people in Iowa or wherever, it cost a lot to live here. I would like McNerney to be more like Congressman Jerrold Nadler (D-NY) and other politicians who recognize that being “wealthy” depends on where you live. Nadler proposed the “Tax Equity Act of 2009” to adjust federal tax rates to account for the actual cost of living in major metropolitan areas. That legislation went nowhere, of course.

Posted by TL Nelson
a resident of Danville
on Nov 29, 2010 at 3:21 pm

Re-elected with less than a majority of the vote, Congressman McNerney returns to Congress with the certain knowledge that the majority of District 11 constituents disapprove of his radical ideology and irresponsible voting record.

The 2012 election is not so far away. In the meantime, we will not forget McNerney’s history of extremist politics. We will not forget his vote for the Stimulus Package, the biggest transfer of taxpayer money to special interests in the history of our nation.

We will not forget his vote for Health Care Reform, a bill that hurts 95% of Americans and makes a mess out of our nation’s health care system.

We will not forget his votes to increase the size of government, to balloon our nation’s debt, and to shoulder future generations with a staggering financial burden. We will never forget.

McNerney represents the leftist factions of the Democratic Party, the liberal elite and left-of-center special interests. He does not stand for responsible, centrist government. He does not represent people who work for a living and pay taxes, he does not represent me, and he does not represent the majority of voters in District 11.

Posted by Tom
a resident of Danville
on Nov 29, 2010 at 4:47 pm

Isn't this election over already? Lets all go back to our day jobs

Posted by Citizen Paine
a resident of Danville
on Nov 29, 2010 at 6:07 pm

special interests
health care hurts 95%
liberal elite
spcial interests (again!)

Really, folks? All that hyperbole in just two postings to this thread?

Anyone who calls McNerney a "leftist" has no conception of the breadth of the political spectrum -- or how far to the right the country has moved in the last generation. It's instructive that John Paul Stevens, a Republican nominee, was considered a centrist when appoint to the Supreme Court, but retired thirty+ years later as one of its most liberal members. I know his stuff, and the country moved farther right than he moved left during that period.

You will remember, please, TL, that Mr Bush, the younger was also elected with less than 48+% of the vote, AND, in his case, fewer votes than his Democratic opponent. And Joseph -- I don't happen to recall anything in jrm's writings that approached the vitriol that flows from your missive, above. Do you really want to give him that much power over blood pressure?

I had the pleasure recently to spend some time with the founder of, one of the most popular bundles of hilarity on the web. I asked him why he thought there was no conservative answer to Jon Stewart and the Daily Show -- he said that Fox News had tried to develop such a concept, but that it simply "wasn't funny." There's just nothing but meanness and apoplexy on the Right.

I think he's right.

Posted by jrm
a resident of Vista Grande Elementary School
on Nov 30, 2010 at 10:18 am

jrm is a registered user.

Have a nice day Joseph....clearly you are a Harmer backer and still seething at your loss at the polls. The election is over, at least for everyone except Mr. Harmer it seems. [Portion removed due to disrespectful comment]

Posted by spcwt
a resident of Danville
on Nov 30, 2010 at 11:55 am


[Portion removed due to disrespectful comment]

I’m glad you’ve got over 28 years of experience balancing a checkbook. That means you should be able to tell me how we’re going to pay for all the goodies McNerney voted for.

I first asked you that question nearly a year ago before McNerney and Pelosi rammed Obamacare down our throats.

Do you have a thoughtful answer? Or will you again talk endlessly about how Obamacare was the “right” thing to do, costs be damned?

Posted by Citizen Paine
a resident of Danville
on Nov 30, 2010 at 12:23 pm

I'll play.

At $623 Billion in FY2008, US military spending was $123 Billion greater than the rest of the world, COMBINED, according to this website: Web Link If you have a better number, kindly use it -- the fact remains, though, that the Pentagon is the very first place to look.

Tell me how much you think the health care plan will cost, with source attribution, please, and I'll tell you what I'd cut first to pay for it.

Note that I won't be much impressed with diatribes about making us weaker -- what about getting others to shoulder more of the combined burden -- or even, negotiating treaties (like START, to start) that allow everybody to gear back. If your boys in the GrandiOse Party won't vote to ratify START, that's one more good reason to realize they aren't serious about reducing government spending.

Posted by jrm
a resident of Vista Grande Elementary School
on Nov 30, 2010 at 1:58 pm

jrm is a registered user.

Okay SP, I am assuming you are intellectually flexible and not a FOX news idealogue sitting transfixed in front of Beck et. the risk of straying from the thread topic let me give you something to reflect on (a "thoughtful" answer to use your term.)
Richard Nixon wanted to address health care reform back in 1968 but was told to back off. Every administration since then has tried to implement needed reforms to curb abuses and runaway costs, this is not a "Obamacare" issue, it has been brought up time and time again.
How will we pay for it? A very sound question indeed. Here are some examples. 1) Medicare reform---up until now Medicare had a "any willing provider" stance, meaning any provider that wanted to provide services and bill Medicare could do so, unlike the private payers (Anthem, Cigna, United) that negotiates discounts from providers in order to include them in their PPO network. Medicare has never put anything out to bid until recently. They produced a RFP for a whole range of home health care services...oxygen therapy, wound care, skilled nursing visits, physical therapy and diabetes management to name a few. The bids back from providers averaged 30% less than current Medicare rates. This "put it out to bid" will be rolled out nationally. 2) Disease Management---currently 10% of Medicare recipients consume over 65% of the total budget, these are folks with chronic illnesses that have no one acting as a care coordinator to oversee their overall care. The private payers have long ago implemented disease management programs for Cardiac disease, Diabetes, COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disorders)and asthma to name a few. Medicare enacted regional trial programs in Florida, Texas and Georgia 3 years ago to sample the disease management programs the private payers use and explore the potential savings, I know because I was one tasked with responding to one of the RFPs by the company I worked for. 3) Enacting SGR (sustainable growth rate) formulas for reimbursement to providers that have long term solvency of Medicare as a top priority. 4) Cracking down on fraud and an example look up a company named Amedisys (AMED on nasdaq) on google, research AMED fraud and you will get a good example of how much money is being wasted on care that is not medically necessary.
That should be enough for now, I won't get into the private payer debate here and how now there are really only 5 or 6 companies one can buy insurance from. BTW, the bipartisan Erskine Bowles/Allen Simpson commitee is solidly behind health care reform as an essential component of addressing our alarming deficit...this is not a radical socialist idea.

Posted by spcwt
a resident of Danville
on Nov 30, 2010 at 4:23 pm

JRM, Citizen Paine,

First, I’ve never watched Fox News. Ever. I don’t get that channel. Sure seems like you guys know a lot about it, however. Or perhaps you are just parroting what you see on the Daily Show (BTW, I like Jon Stewart’s humor).

Second, I’m not a Republican. I had no problem voting for McNerney in 2006. I voted for both Clinton and Kerry and thought Hillary would’ve been most qualified for President, but I digress.

I agree with both of your points about cutting the bloated military budget and the steps JRM mentioned about healthcare reform.

But how much savings can you get from all that? A $1- 3 trillion, at most, per decade? If you think that is going to balance our books, you misunderstand the problem.

Medicare and Social Security are short over $100 trillion. The amounts of savings you’re talking about wouldn’t even be a drop in the bucket. See attached link.

Web Link

Every tax dollar spent on Obamacare is a dollar that can’t be spent on Medicare and Social Security. The same is true for every dollar McNerney is spending on tax credits for windmills, etc.

Clearly either your checkbook balancing skills are lacking or you haven’t thought this all the way through.

Perhaps you have been spending too much time being a McNerney cheerleader and not enough time being critical of the fluff coming out of DC?

Posted by jrm
a resident of Vista Grande Elementary School
on Nov 30, 2010 at 8:24 pm

jrm is a registered user.

SPCWT...well, when you said "every dollar spent on Obamacare is a dollar that can't be spent on Medicare" I realized my arguments were futile....I guess if you cannot get FOX news at your house you probably can't get CNN, NPR, MSNBC or CSPAN and now I understand your frame of reference. No more healthcare debate here from me with you...have a good Holiday!

Posted by spcwt
a resident of Danville
on Dec 1, 2010 at 7:21 am


Thank you for not writing another treatise about health care. Although I would probably agree with most of your comments, it’s off topic and wouldn’t address my point about how we can pay for the health care tax credits McNerney voted to give the middle class, his expansion of Medicaid to cover millions more people and all his other spending.

Democrats like McNerney have lots of great ideas. It’s just too bad most of them are expensive and most often have unintended negative consequences. Republicans have lots of bad ideas. And nobody has any idea how to balance a checkbook anymore. I guess everyone’s too busy watching TV news.

Posted by Chet
a resident of Danville
on Dec 1, 2010 at 10:56 pm

The right man won for all the right reasons. We are all lucky to have our fine Congressman Jerry McNerney going back to work for us all in Washington D.C.

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