DOWNTOWN SAN DIEGO – Thursday was an interesting day on the mayoral campaign trail with one of the candidates heckling and a spokesman for the other comparing the competitor to “The X-Files.”
It started when Bob Filner held an afternoon news conference to discuss Carl DeMaio’s relationship with developer Doug Manchester and how it could impact San Diego.
Filner said the relationship began with Manchester giving DeMaio $150,000 to fund the San Diego Citizens for Accountable Government. Filner said it “bankrolled Mr. DeMaio’s entrance into local politics.” Filner went on to say DeMaio and Manchester used the organization to promte candidates they supported and tear down the ones they didn’t.
Filner said DeMaio now wants to use city tax dollars to move City Hall to the Navy Broadway Complex, which is one of Manchester’s projects.
“Do we want a mayor whose top priority is using hundreds of millions of dollars of taxpayer dollars to save his benefactors assets?” questioned Filner.
Councilman Todd Gloria spoke at the news conference, backing Filner on the issue. Gloria recalled a meeting where DeMaio was questioned about the future of City Hall.
“He confirmed his prior opposition to Sanders proposal for redeveloping on-site and went on to provide his rationale for that opposition and potential ways forward,” said Gloria.
“One of his suggestions was that the city could relocate City Hall to a future waterfront office building at the Navy Broadway Complex.”
Filner also said Manchester helped DeMaio get elected to city council through financing
After the news conference, DeMaio spokesperson K.B. Forbes addressed Filner’s claims.
“It’s another wacky unsubstantiated conspiracy theory,” said Forbes. “Sometimes I think I’m watching reruns of the X-files.”
“As everyone knows, Carl DeMaio has been against a new City Hall. With that said, we need to note that Carl DeMaio is always open to listening to ideas.”
Forbes continued the interview saying, “today Bob Filner showed again he wants to divide. He wants to distort the record.” As Forbes was talking, Filner, who was standing nearby, began heckling with the words “distort” and “demonize.”
Forbes called out Filner saying, “of course you can hear Bob Filner right over here ridiculing because he knows it’s the truth.”