Filner or Fellner? Ohhh, never mind.

Steve Gramm Steve Gramm 15 Comments


This morning, The San Diego Union-Tribune published a Michael Smolens column, “John Cox’s peculiar relationship with Bob Filner,” which describes Gubernatorial candidate Cox as “…one of the rare people in public life who acknowledges being in contact with disgraced ex-San Diego Mayor Bob Filner.” The piece goes on to note how unusual a Cox-Filner relationship is, given Cox’s $10,000 contribution a few years ago to the recall Filner effort. Smolens ends with a question of whether the Filner connection could be a liability to Cox as he runs for Governor.

Smolens apparently got the information from Cox himself, in a recent SDUT Editorial Board interview with the candidate, which was posted online yesterday.

There’s just one problem. A read of that interview transcript shows Cox referring to Bob Fellner, of Transparent California fame, not of headlock infamy.

We’d link to the Smolens column, but the SDUT did the immediate right thing and took it down, while posting a correction.

Of course it still appears in print editions of the paper all over the county today. Millennials may no longer read print, but many voters still do (that’s meant to be a bit tongue in cheek).

In the words of Emily Litella, “Oh, that’s very different — never mind.”


Comments 15

  1. It all began with a completely false narrative about John Cox in the LA Times written by Liam Dillon. Portraying the recall effort against Bob Filner as the works of Donna Frye, Marco Gonzalez et al. The only legal recall was Michael Pallamary, myself, Stampp Corbin and our major contributor John Cox.

    Glad to see fake news get called out but social media is running rampant with these fake stories.

  2. Just to let people know where I stand on John Cox. I came up with a welfare reform plan (talked to Carl DeMaio about it when he was running for Mayor) and an education reform plan.

    Not knowing either candidate – John Cox or Travis Allen, I sent them both the ideas.

    I got nothing but crickets from the Cox campaign.

    But the campaign manager with Travis Allen responded within a couple of days and told me they loved my ideas and would incorporate these ideas into the Travis Allen 5 point plan.

    We have a corrupted education system in California exposed by Charlotte Iserbyt in her book ‘The Deliberate Dumbing Down of America’ and a lot of parents know this but are powerless to stop it. For the parents who don’t know and find out they want a solution.

    Travis’s education solution will appeal to parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles in ALL parties.

    John Cox in the San Diego debate pretty much just talked about smarter spending. That’s why our kids rank 47 out of 50 states? Because spending is not allocated properly? I do not see any thing about education on the Cox website.

    Spending is the big issue for Democrats as well but you don’t hear anyone (but Travis Allen) talking about stopping Common Core and restoring our education to what it should be).

    If all these voters know about Travis’s education plan (#4 of his 5 point plan to restore California) – he will get elected, John Cox will not.

    “That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.”

  3. The President of the United States has endorsed John Cox. Maybe it’s time to get behind Cox and defeat frat boy Newsom in November?

  4. And since the President of the United States is so incredibly popular in California, I am sure that his endorsement is exactly what John Cox needs win over the electorate in November.

  5. Brian,

    Not sure the relevance of your last post. Are you saying that Donald Trump would beat Jerry Brown in California? Or are you just conveniently forgetting that almost 3 million more Californians vote in a Presidential election than they do on a Gubernatorial election.

    Either way, I can assure that in a race between John Cox and any Democrat, it will be the Democrat running ads touting Cox’s endorsement by the President.

  6. “it will be the Democrat running ads touting Cox’s endorsement by the President.”

    Indeed. Newsom is already doing that. Every time I see that Newsom ad, I think “Damn, I REALLY like Cox now”

    The Cox is pro-2A is a great Ad for John

    This one is just bull***

  7. If you were Newsom, who would you want to run against in the General Election: Villaraigosa, Chiang or Cox?

    Newsom will do everything he can to make sure that Republicans know that Cox is the true Trump supporter and they should all vote for him over Allen.

  8. No, Brian. I do not think Allen can beat Newsom and I am sure that Newsom isn’t worried about Allen in the slightest, but thanks for the morning chuckle. It is always good to start the day with a good laugh.

    A question for you: Do you understand how California’s Top-Two Primary works? I know that Gavin Newsom does. He also knows that he has much better (almost 100%) chance of beating a Republican in the General Election than he would in beating a fellow Democrat. Since attacking a fellow Democrat could backfire (most Democrats would like to see two Democrats in the General Election), he is doing the next best thing – building up his strongest (at least in the eyes of Republican voters) Republican opponent in the hope that Cox can keep Villaraigosa and Chiang out of the General Election.

    Bottom line on this race: it is possible that a Republican will make the General but it is almost impossible for a Republican to actually be elected Governor. If you (and your fellow Republicans) want to keep Newsom from being elected Governor, then you better hope that Villaraigosa or Chiang, not Cox or Allen, make the General Election.

  9. I want a Republican Governor and that’s not going to happen by joining the Republican Surrender caucus. Is it likely that Newsom wins in November? I dont know but I do know that a material change for the way the Democrats are funded is coming in the next six weeks.

    I’m playing the long game, HQ. I am fighting for a Republican Governor and Republican majority in the Legislature in 2024. That ain’t gonna happen by appeasing today when the gains are right around the corner

  10. HQ,

    One battle at a time. The Trump endorsement is a boon to Cox and a potential death-knell toward Allen’s campaign who falsely claims the Trump mantle (shh, don’t tell his supporters). Getting past the primary is step one then re-tweaking the message for the masses is the next, that is, finding a balance that will work. A couple of points.

    1. Everyone thought Trump would get trounced in the Presidential election.
    2. More and more cities are siding with Trump and the federal government in their sanctuary lawsuit.
    3. Getting the base excited is something Trump can do better than Cox or Allen. Trump supporters can be rabid in their support and I’ve seen that first hand in both good and bad ways.

    While Newsom is the prohibitive favorite, many thought Tony Villa would be more competitive with the Latino base but is not. Many thought Chiang would be a legit challenger, he’s not. My point being politics can be unpredictable but to assume Newsom is going to win and all is lost, is wrong. Now statistically, he should win but there’s a reason they play the game.

    The primary is phase one – you have to get past that, then phase two, the general and figuring out the best way to expose what Democrats have been doing is the next phase. I don’t expect Cox to beat Newsome but you don’t just give up.

    As far as Cox being accessible, I was attacked for writing about what Travis Allen told me in person whereas Cox took my criticism and approached me and talked about it one-on-one. My story is the opposite of Lee Sandvick, so we all have our own stories to tell.

  11. William,

    Well reasoned as usual except for the comment that “Everyone thought Trump would get trounced in the Presidential election.” In California, Trump did get trounced.

    Newsom is a super liberal who even scares me. Cox cannot be elected. My vote is for Chiang and I hope that enough Republicans disagree with you and Brian and vote for the most palatable candidate who has a chance to win the General Election.

  12. Brian,

    I appreciate the offer but my vote for Governor will go to a Democrat. I will, however give my vote to two Republicans on my ballot and I have financially supported two others that aren’t running in my district. Unlike most who participate here, I try to vote for (and support) the person I feel will do the best job. Sometimes, that is a Republican. How many Democrats have you voted for and/or financially supported?

    I have even considered registering Republican at different times in my life, but I still can’t support a party that (among other things):

    1. Purges voting rolls
    2. Does not believe in equal rights for those who are LGBT
    3. Does not believe in a worker’s right to form a union
    4. Seriously lacks diversity, especially at the Congressional staffing level

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