SAN FRANCISCO -- Will Matt Gonzalez soon become the Green Party's first mayor of a major U.S. city? Gonzalez faces centrist Democrat Gavin Newsom in a Dec. 9 runoff election in San Francisco. And while the smart money is on Newsom, who ran well ahead of Gonzalez in a crowded Nov. 4 general election, there is reason to believe that a tight race is possible. The election may come down to whether San Francisco's large constituency of progressive Democrats can bring themselves to back a Green for local office.
Americans don't fare well in the historic memory of residents of the Sulu Archipelago, a Muslim-dominated group of islands in the far southwestern Philippines. In one 1906 incident, U.S. troops under the command of Gen. Leonard Wood killed more than 1,000 ethnic Tausugs, leaving a bitter animosity that survives to this day. "It is a scar left by the Americans that cannot be healed," Gerry Salapuddin, the Philippine House of Representatives' deputy speaker for Mindanao, a group of islands in the southern part of the country that encompasses Sulu, recently told the Philippine Daily Inquirer. "We do not want to repeat the mistakes of history."
Pat Williams was happy to get back to Montana. "It was like going to an island of victory to be in Helena," says the former nine-term member of Congress. A Democratic progressive, Williams witnessed the election-day desperation of his party in the nation's capital.
"Dario [Herrera] is the best one-on-one campaigner I've ever seen," says Paul Brown, Las Vegas coordinator of the Progressive Leadership Alliance of Nevada (PLAN), and after a day going door-to-door with Herrera in the city's new 3rd Congressional District, I don't doubt it.
A 29-year-old Democrat and a member of the powerful Clark County Commission that governs greater Las Vegas, Herrera is battling down to the wire against Jon Porter, an insurance executive and a Republican state senator, in a closely watched race in a swing-state district almost evenly divided between Republicans and Democrats. Both national parties are throwing resources into the campaign, believing it will help determine the face of the next Congress.