RPA Statement on Election Results
The City Council candidates supported by the Richmond Progressive Alliance, Eduardo Martinez and Marilyn Langlois, placed fourth and fifth, close but not enough to take one of the three open seats . Measure N, the Soda tax that we actively supported, was defeated. Despite the losses, we are proud of our work in this election. Our candidates and our volunteers worked very hard and in a principled campaign focusing on the issues and moving Richmond forward.
We are still evaluating to understand what we could have done better or differently and welcome input in this process.
The results highlighted a major issue in American politics-the role of corporate wealth in the American electoral system-the raw power of the 1%. Millions of dollars were poured in to defeat us by Chevron and Big Soda. Our volunteer organization did well but we were not successful in: (1) overcoming their ability to circulate lies and distortions with paid campaigners and mass mailings and (2) getting our candidates well enough known.
Our primary purpose is not to win elections at all costs but to build a movement that unites and serves the people of Richmond especially those who get ignored because of the power and interests of a few large corporations. We remain committed to working toward these goals with all organizations in the community, all members of the council, and the city staff.
Measure N, the soda tax, was defeated. One positive effect of the campaign is the new awareness about the health problems of sugary drinks and how our kids and our communities are at risk. There were many people who agreed with us about this problem but disagreed that the soda tax was the proper response. We look forward to hearing their proposals for ways to challenge the diabetes and obesity epidemic and funding healthy alternative activities for our kids. We welcome the opportunity to work on these proposals.
RPA Steering Committee
In the next issues we will have more discussion and analysis of the election. We encourage you to submit your views. Please send them to