Congratulations Mayor Quan, Now Let's Get to Work!
The past week has been an emotional roller-coaster of finger biting and anxiously awaiting the official, certified announcement of Jean Quan as the incoming Mayor of the City Oakland.
When the first round of ballots were counted on election night, it looked as though former Senate Pro Tem, Don Perata, may have won the race. Many of us that volunteered our weekends door-knocking and talking to registered voters about choosing Jean Quan for Mayor with the new Ranked Choice Voting system, kept our fingers crossed that the outcome might shift as all the ballots were counted.
I’m excited about Jean Quan for Mayor, not just because she is a trusted and true progressive with a proven track record of fighting for what’s best for Oaklanders. But also because there was a strong grassroots movement that came together to support the fight for Quan for Mayor, and made sure that the campaign built a broad base of support. Quan and the volunteers with her campaign, did not just focus on talking to voters in Chinatown; they made their way throughout the streets of Oakland talking to African American and Latino communities in East and West Oakland, listening to their concerns and their hopes for an Oakland filled with peace, justice and opportunity for all.
Another reassuring thing was watching Oakland voters step up to used Ranked Choice Voting to select a Mayor that most voters supported to one degree or another. When RCV was passed by voters in 2006 and implemented for its first time in this election, many claimed voters would not be able to use it properly. But over 98% of Oakland voters used the new voting system correctly in its first election.
Although we have elected a new Mayor, the work does not, and did not stop on November 3rd. My commitment to bringing lasting progressive change to Oakland was about more than winning at the poll places. The same volunteers that were in the streets door-knocking for Quan must continue to remain engaged in issues affecting Oaklanders, and hold our elected officials accountable. I am optimistic that Mayor Quan will continue to speak directly with the people of this city and expect us all to keep making our voices heard.
As Mayor Jean Quan will be doing her best in the rooms of Oakland City Hall, all of us need to keep up our efforts on the streets of Oakland- putting forth new strategies to improve our city and working together to strengthen this beautiful city so that all of us can thrive.
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