NEWMAN COUNCIL BACKS DeMARTINI: City Council meetings in Newman might get a little testy during the next month. Mayor John Fantazia is running for the District 5 board of supervisors seat, and all four council members have endorsed his opponent, incumbent Jim DeMartini.
DeMartini's campaign announced this week that he has the endorsement of Councilmen Mike Crinklaw, Ted Kelly, Robert Martina and Ed Katen. City Treasurer David Reed and former Councilman R.T. Applegate also have endorsed DeMartini.
"I think this nearly unanimous support from Newman elected officials confirms what my campaign is all about, that I have a record of standing up for the people of the West Side," DeMartini said.
Fantazia said he was "a little disappointed," but added, "everyone has a right to endorse who they want."
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So much for home-court advantage ...
DENHAM BILLS BACKED: While beleaguered by a recall attempt in his district, state Sen. Jeff Denham has had two bills approved in Sacramento by the state Senate.
One, Senate Bill 1204, would allow state and local agencies to offer politicians, office-seekers and other public officials the option of filing statements of economic interests electronically. The bill passed 38-0.
The Senate also passed SB 1137, which would create guidelines for lenders and homeowners to meet and avoid foreclosure. That bill passed 28-10.
Both bills now move to the state Assembly. Denham, R-Atwater, represents the 12th State Senate District and faces a recall challenge June 3.
BERRYHILL FUND-RAISER: Bill Berryhill, Republican candidate for the 26th Assembly District, is holding a fund-raiser today in Escalon. It will be at the home of Jim and Brigit Mayol, 26144 E. River Road, from 5 to 7:30 p.m. It will include entertainment, appetizers and beverages. For more information, call 735-0234.
CHIESA EVENTS: Vito Chiesa, candidate for the Stanislaus County Supervisor District 2 seat, will have a fund-raiser tri-tip dinner Friday at the Stanislaus County Fairground in Turlock. Cost is $50. For more information, call 883-0444. ... There will be a meet-and-greet on Wednesday at the home of Stephen and Donna Carkeet, 1703 Edgewood Drive, Turlock. It starts at 6:30 p.m. Refreshments will be served. ... There also will be a wine and cheese open house May 8 from 6 to 8 p.m. at the home of Mike and Ann Badiou, 11312 Doerksen Road, Denair. Donations accepted. To RSVP, call Ann Badiou at 634-3445 or Cathy Morelli at 874-3022.
WEIDMAN FUND-RAISER: The Friends of Les Weidman election committee is holding a "Fiesta Fundraiser"on May 9 for his campaign for Stanislaus County supervisor. It's at the home of Julio and Rosa Hallack, 3130 Fulkerth Road, Turlock. It will include a Mexican dinner, drinks and Latin music. Social hour at 5 p.m. and dinner at 6 p.m. Donation levels: Hermano $100. Compadre $50. Amigo $25. The public is invited. For more information, call 541-5914 or e-mail email@example.com.
KELSEY FUND-RAISER IN WINTON: Deidre Kelsey, running for Merced County's Board of Supervisors District 4 seat, is having a tri-tip fund-raiser barbecue Saturday from 4 to 6:30 p.m. at Winton Community Park, Winton Way and Olive Avenue. Cost is $10 per person. Tickets are available by calling 563-6573 or via e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
REPUBLICAN PARTY OF STANISLAUS COUNTY: Stephen Frank, publisher of the California Political News and Views (www.capoliticalnews.com), will be the guest speaker at the meeting Monday of the Republican Party of Stanislaus County (Central Committee) at the Eichel Building, 118 W. Orangeburg Ave., Modesto. Frank, also past president of the California Republican Assembly and founder of the National Federation of Republican Assemblies, will talk about the political climate in California and the impact of the Internet on politics and the presidential election. John Franklin and Dana Ferreira, coordinators of Friends of Jeff Denham Against the Recall, will report on the campaign. The meeting starts at 6 p.m. with a hosted hospitality, Frank talks at 6:30 p.m., and a business meeting follows. The event is open to the public. For more information, call Joan Clendenin at 985-3091 or e-mail email@example.com.
CANDIDATES FORUM: The League of Women Voters of Stanislaus County will hold a public candidates' forum for county supervisors District 5 race May 8. Candidates are Jim DeMartini and John Fantazia. The forum will start at 6:30 p.m. and will be at the Modesto City Council chambers at 1010 10th St. The forum will be televised live on Charter Channel 19. There will be a chance for viewers to call in and ask questions. There were plans to include District 2 candidates Les Weidman and Vito Chiesa, but because of a scheduling conflict, Chiesa could not make it. So neither candidate will be included. The forum will be moderated by Marie Bairey and will be rebroadcast at later dates. For further information, call 524-1698 or go to www.lwvstanislaus.org.
LINGUICA FEST: Merced's Dennis Cardoza, uncontested for a fourth term in the House of Representatives, is hosting his fifth annual "Linguica Fest" on May 10 at the Old Fisherman's Club. It starts at 6:30 p.m. with a social, then dinner and dancing at 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $50 and can be purchased by calling 489-7188. For more information, go to www.denniscardoza.com.
SOUTH SAN JOAQUIN REPUBLICANS: The South San Joaquin Republicans will hold a local candidates night May 12 at 6 p.m. at Chez Shari Restaurant, 305 N. Union Road, Manteca. The meeting will include candidates running for city council seats in Ripon and Manteca and a question-and-answer session with Assemblyman Greg Aghazarian. Meet and greet is at 6 p.m. followed by speakers at 6:30 p.m. For information, call Frank Aquila, 825-0123.
McCAIN IN STOCKTON: Presumptive Republican presidential nominee Sen. John McCain will visit Stockton on May 22 for a rally and a fund-raiser. The rally is at 4 p.m. at the Spanos Jet Center. He will later attend a fund-raiser at the home of Stockton developer Alex Spanos.
WANTED: YOUNG DEMOCRATS: The Central Valley Young Democrats club is looking for new members to help in 2008 elections. Members should be between the ages of 18 and 35 and may be asked to help in such activities as precinct walking, voter registration and phone banking. The club will soon have elections for new officers. For more information, call 869-5609 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Have comments about or contributions for Election Connection? Send them to Election Connection, P.O. Box 5256, Modesto 95352; or e-mail email@example.com. It appears weekly on Thursdays. Deadline for publication is 6 p.m. Tuesday. Endorsements, yard signs and precinct walk announcements will not be published.