May 252016

IMG_3860Cristi Beckstead-Nelson had to go back in to her own pocket for $36,000 more dollars. This means she is spending $138k-ish of her Husband’s money on this campaign.

It is likely that she needed the money to complete her mail program – one such effort is pictured here next to Bill Halldin’s walk piece.

Nelson is clearly jealous of the endorsements that Mr. Halldin has amassed. I had briefly lampooned her look-at-me-I-am-important-too piece in a previous blog, but when put in raised relief, her 5th mailer becomes an exclamation point for the absurdity of the #AD06 Race.

Suicide Barbie has attacked everyone who has gotten endorsements and donations (yet, she is promoting an event with two of hers), this is usually a clear sign of the quintessential “Grassroots” campaign. No money, high hopes and a faceplant on election day.

Beckstead-Nelson on the other hand is clearly frustrated. She lashed out at only Bill Halldin at the feckless Placer GOP’s debate. It is clear from her countenance that she sees herself as superior to the rest of “those men” running.

The problem is – Andy Pugno has a history. (Good and Bad, mind you as he has enemies)

Kevin “Tropical Depression” Hanley has a long history of working in government and in Auburn. He was unable to gain traction in #AD06 because aside from Congressman McClintock – he has few connections to #AD06.

You’d think that Cristi Beckstead-Nelson would have an advantage over Pugno with his Sac County vs Placer Connections and high negatives. You’d think that she’d also have an advantage over a former Auburn Council-member who is renting a Condo in Roseville to run.

You’d think she’d have an advantage over a slick-talking San Francisco Lawyer with obama-bundler connections and a 12 year absence from Placer County?

Of all the candidates running, she has actually lived in the current AD06 the longest. But, few know her and the vast majority of those that do are via her Father or Husband.

She had to pay Ted Gaines for his endorsement. I proved this point multiple times in past blogs. It is likely that Bethypoo made a similar arrangement as well.

Then the mailer Cristi sent out when laid next to Bill’s walk piece basically sealed the commentary – Ms. Nelson must have made a snap decision to run without doing the necessary ground work or relationship building leading up to a run for major office. $138k of her husband’s money does not make up for that.

It is a brutal reality in politics – when you have to use a name different than your legal name to run for office, and when you meet with local government officials who don’t  know you from Adam – that should have been an obvious clue not to run.

Bill has the endorsements because relationships matter. Many of the other candidates resent him for it. This is another brutal reality in politics.

It is sad, really. She will have wasted $138k-ish of her husband’s money on a fool’s errand – she does not have the last name of Gaines in a special election to make up for her lack of qualifications for office. It is what it is.

Mar 302016

The Folsom Chamber of Commerce held a candidate forum last night. It featured 9(!) of the candidates for #AD06. For reasons unbeknownst to me, Brian Caples and the other Dem were no-shows.

I am going to focus on the funded candidates – so let me summarize the others quickly before the fun part.

“Bo” – rambled. He also attacked the GOP (because he is an NPP don’t you know) and came across poorly as a result.

Gabriel Hydrick – the Lincoln Councilmember presented himself well and as an honest broker. Hydrick seemed to have a grasp of issues. This version of Hydrick is markedly different than the man I have been hearing about for the last 6 years in Lincoln. Hydrick has no money, no access to money and looks to be headed to also-ran status.

As a side note, I liked his ballot statement that he submitted when he filed for office. I told him as such afterwards.

Suzanne Jones – came across poorly. She distinguished herself by attacking the others on the stage railing on everyone for getting financial support while asserting her moral superiority. Just not a good way to go.

Mik. Sounded like one of the Good-fellas. He is a leader. Just ask him. He will tell you, repeatedly. We will be relieved of seeing him on street corners very soon.

And, now for the fun:

Cristi Beckstead-Nelson, robotic. She was reciting from memory off of her website. It was so bad that on more than one occasion she forgot her lines. She did indeed repeat the lie of being a business owner multiple times. It made me feel like I was time warped back to 2011 when I witnessed another unqualified, inarticulate candidate with a falsified resume make similar public gaffes.

Beckstead-Nelson looked miserable and her disdain for other candidates while they were speaking was palpable. I’ve been told by more than one person that has interacted with Ms. Beckstead-Nelson that she is very status conscious and is remiss to interact with average people unless there is a direct benefit to do so. This was clear to this blogger by virtue of her behavior on the stage.

Beckstead-Nelson has had a large head start on the rest of the field and she appears to have been caught up to and passed in a short time. That has to be frustrating for her. Maybe she should have not filed and reimbursed her husband the $100k she wasted, I mean “lent” her campaign.

Kevin Hanley was much more subdued last night and presented good answers to most questions. He is attempting to walk right through one of his biggest weaknesses, Auburn. He frequently referred to his time on the Auburn City Council and the Auburn Chamber of Commerce.

Hanley’s campaign seems to be stuck in time. Mr Hanley touts his resume, which includes 24 years of government work. Even before Hanley’s performance last night, I was clear there is no question that Hanley is qualified for the job. I can’t say I can blame Hanley for what he is doing, however I think modern campaigns have left Mr. Hanley behind.

Andy Pugno certainly appeared confident, if not cocky about the prospects of his campaign for Assembly by virtue of the way he carried himself. When he was not distracted by his cell phone, he gave unrehearsed answers to questions that sometimes included stories.

Pugno was the only candidate that specifically mentioned the social issues. Halldin did by inference – those are the only two that went there. Pugno also made it clear how he intends to attack at least one of his foes – referencing public employee union money and his plan to not take any of it. (Like they would attempt to donate or endorse Mr. Pugno to begin with)

Kevin Kiley was indeed the most bizarre candidate of the evening. Kiley spoke to the audience as if he was arguing a case in court. When he was not speaking, he was fidgeting and giving off an aura of superiority. Both are quite a spectacle for a young man of 31 years of age who has never been married and has no real-world job experience.

Kiley almost spoke of himself in the third person and like Pugno was using lawyer vernacular and large words in his presentations. I am not sure how Pugno or Kiley relate to the public at large – or if either of them care. Both appear to believe that they have this race locked up.

I have endorsed Bill Halldin. I am actively working to help his campaign. Therefore I believe that Bill Halldin was the clear winner of last night’s forum. Halldin answered all of the questions well and all there acknowledged that Mr. Halldin was ready to go.

Mar 012016

HalldinAssemblyLogo2For those of you paying attention to the AD06 Race, you will notice that several months after the purchase of the Ted Gaines endorsement, ($2500 check written on 10/6 and announcement made on 10/13) Liberal Republican Cristi Nelson announced the endorsement of Beth Gaines. One could only assume that this check was written out of somewhere that is not reportable on Cristi’s end this time.

Bill Halldin on the other hand- EARNED the Rocklin Chamber PAC endorsement (on the heels of the Roseville Chamber PAC endorsement). You don’t have to buy endorsements when you have an actual connection to the district.

Dear Aaron,

Good morning. 

I am excited to announce that our campaign has received the endorsement of the Rocklin Area Chamber of Commerce’s Political Action Committee — the third local Chamber PAC to endorse my candidacy. Please see the Rocklin Chamber PAC’s release below. 
With the latest endorsement, all three local chamber’s PACs that have endorsed so far have backed our campaign. I am gratified to have the support because these local chambers are key voices for businesses and for our communities.
More big news: our campaign’s volunteers have made a great statement — collecting signatures from 1,100 neighbors from around the district to help put me on the ballot. That’s more than twice as many signatures as collected by any other campaign, demonstrating the breadth of our strong grassroots organization. Thank you! 
Finally, below is an invitation to my next fundraising event, coming up on Wednesday, March 9 and hosted by DF Properties and Denio’s Farmers Market in Roseville I hope you can join us as we continue to raise the money necessary to be successful in June.  
Thank you again for your interest and support! 
Some candidates attempt to brag or embellish their accomplishments. 1100 In-Lieu signatures is a large number, ask any seasoned campaign veteran. Perhaps this is why a private investigator has made public records requests in to Mr. Halldin’s information from his time on the Sierra College Board? (His opponents are preparing to attack him, an admission that they know they are running from behind)
Feb 262016

First of all – all seven candidates were there. Typical of a Republican Primary, there are far too many candidates in the field.

Notable, this was the first time Mik Mikaluco and Gabriel Hydrick were at an event that I am aware of. Suzanne Jones was also present at this forum.

The bulk of this update will focus on the three opponents to Bill Halldin that have some level of funding.

Cristi Nelson is positioning herself as the liberal Republican in this race. As a political insider, I remember when the massive independent expenditures that were financed in part by Chevron, PG&E, the Realtors, the dentists and a few others targeted safe Republican seats in hopes of helping elect tax-raising Republicans. My first thought is that someone has advised her that going full RINO jacket will get her that support.

It is the only possible reason why someone would openly talk about their refusal to sign the “no new taxes pledge” in one of the most conservative districts in California. It is the only possible reason why she openly talks about her country-club liberal social views.

The part that Nelson seems to have missed is that those expenditures were largely ineffective and in 2014, were quite sparse.

Cristi Nelson’s big moment at the forum was directly answering Ken Campbell telling him she had not and was not signing the “No New Taxes Pledge”. #epicfail

Kevin Kiley brought about 10 supporters with him who comprised about a quarter of the audience. Despite failing to achieve has lofty fundraising goals, the 30 year old Lawyer is continuing on with his campaign.

Kevin Hanley, who moved from Auburn to Roseville to run for Assembly had about the most flamboyant moment of the evening. He was railing on the PCTPA and their scheme to raise our taxes. (His words) He was waiving copies of the mailers as he was speaking. One of Hanley’s short list of endorsements is Keith Nesbitt who sits on the board and supports the effort to vet a local sales tax increase. Whoops. (Nesbitt’s Alternate Berlant cast the votes.)

The #AD06 Race is going to be intense and these candidate forums will be nice miniature train wrecks similar to the national spectacle that suffices for a GOP Presidential Primary.

Feb 022016

Cristi Nelson has been running for AD06 for about a year. She has been out-raised by Bill Halldin in 4 months and now is having to resort to some poorly constructed spin in her campaign updates.

She recently sent out a press release claiming that she out-raised her opponents and is now the “front-runner”. Um, nope. She has next to no endorsements and as you will find out some of those that she has came with a price-tag.

My comments are inserted amidst the lines of her email:

Roseville, CA— Small business owner and candidate for Assembly, Cristi Nelson has secured her place as the front runner in Assembly District 6 by reporting more than $240,000 in total contributions and $180,006 cash on hand. Despite being a first time candidate running against long term political figures in the Sacramento foothills, Nelson has bested all of them in fundraising.

Please note – this is the main fabrication of her email. She lists $103,297 in debt. This means her real cash on hand is $76,709… far less than Bill Halldin’s Cash on hand of $115,141 less his debts (which are a whopping $4700). She is claiming the $100k LOAN she gave herself as money raised, a common trick in campaigns.

This is a phenomenal report for a first time candidate that is running circles around some others that have done this many times,” said Senator Ted Gaines when asked about the report. “She is clearly the front runner for this seat.”

Please note: Cristi Nelson wrote Ted Gaines for State Senate a $2500 check out of her official Assembly account on 10/6, was this payment for services rendered? In case you’re not connecting the dots, click here to see the announcement of the endorsement on 10/13, 7 days after the check was written. Now we know the price tag

I am leaving out the rest of Cristi’s email which is also an embellished resume, speaking of common tricks of candidates.

The truth comes out in Bill Halldin’s email which honestly lists the whole picture:

The Numbers                   Amount Raised (6/1-12/31)  Cash On Hand          Campaign Debt


Bill Halldin                            $152,569                              $119,939                          $   4,798

Cristi Nelson                       $  62,837                               $181,490                           $103,297

Kevin Kiley                          $  43,815                               $ 57,537                             $         0

Kevin Hanley                      $  73,206                               $ 68,721                             $  54,862

Suzanne Jones                  $  17,681                               $   2,613                               $    9,800

Kiley, who is also a lawyer like Cristi Nelson was reputed to have raised gobs of money with a ceiling of $250,000 or more. Of his money, $8400 has come out of his own pocket (but to his credit, those were not loans). But then there was this Gem from Kevin Kiley on 10/30/2015:

Dear Friend,

I need your help. We are within a few thousand dollars of achieving what was once dismissed as too ambitious a goal: $100,000 raised. Your donation today will help us reach our target before our October 31st deadline.

Whoops. Kiley gave himself another $4200 (the second half of the 8400) on 12/31 and his total is still short of $100k.

The correct statement is that Bill Halldin has torched the field in just four months. This is what happens when you have been active in the community with a thick rolodex of friends. Look for Halldin to continue raising real money from real people in droves in the coming weeks.