San Diego County Gun Owners PAC Announces Two Changes in City Council Ratings

Tommy KnepperSan Diego County Gun Owners 35 Comments


After announcing our launch on October 21, San Diego County Gun Owners PAC received numerous inquiries about our ratings from both concerned city councilmembers, wanting to change their rating, and concerned voters who wanted to know why their elected official received a positive or negative rating. After reviewing information provided to us about some of the local city council members, SDCGO PAC has made two significant updates.

Encinitas Mayor Kristin Gaspar (R) is running for San Diego County Board of Supervisors. On January 30, 2013, Gaspar voted in favor of a gun ban while serving on the Encinitas city council. “There is nothing reasonable about a ban,” said Michael Schwartz, Executive Director of San Diego County Gun Owners. “I can’t imagine why she thought this was ok, but we certainly do not want somebody with this vote on their record moving up to the County Board of Supervisors where they make decisions on many of San Diego’s gun ranges and shops. Voting for a gun ban is as aggressively anti-Second Amendment and anti-liberty as it gets.”

Mayor Gaspar has earned a “thumbs down” in light of this information. “We expect her to give lip service to voters, saying she’s changed her mind, but many candidates pander in an election year when they are running for higher office and looking for support. Her voting record is what we can trust and that record is bad on the Second Amendment,” stated Schwartz.

La Mesa City Council Member Kristine Alessio (R) is recently elected and is proving to be a fantastic representative of her constituents! After an in depth interview and review of public comments favoring better mental healthcare and opposition to gun bans, San Diego County Gun Owners is proud to reflect a “thumbs up” rating for Council Member Alessio.

Alessio also has signed the SDCGO’s pledge which asks each city council member in San Diego County “to meet with San Diego County Gun Owners and discuss any proposed legislation that involved firearms…” before a vote. Her commitment to defending the Second Amendment and discussing any legislation with SDCGO prior to a vote should be commended and is represented on our ratings page.

To learn more about SDCGO visit: or on Facebook: San Diego County Gun Owners


Comments 35

  1. As a female firearms instructor and responsible gun owner I am appalled that a woman, such as Mayor Gaspar would vote to remove any of my rights granted to us by the constitution! I will be sure to never vote for her in any election and let all my clients and friends know her real stance on upholding her oath…..
    I think it is great that SDCGO has made it a point to reach out to all our offices in SD and fight for our rights! And thank you Council Woman Alessio for pledging to be educated and keeping our rights intact!

  2. I don’t think it’s an “endorsement” as much as it is a rating, Ms, Alessio. Nonetheless, I am glad your voting record is consistent with the Second Amendment.

  3. The rating system is simple and straight forward. It is long overdue as well. I look forward to the candidates as this list expands to see where they rate, especially the judge candidates.

  4. Glad this group is holding elected officials accountable for their votes and increasing the transparency on this important issue.

  5. This organization is providing a great service — providing information on candidates’ positions on the 2nd Amendment. Many factors can play in a voter’s decision, and thankfully those who care about gun rights will have a better understanding of candidates’ support for or opposition to one of our most important rights as Americans.

    Well done!

  6. Thank you, Richard!

    A supporter of hers asked me what Gaspar could do now. I said she needs to donate to our organization.

    He said, “a donation from her will get you to support her???”

    I said, “No. We won’t support her. She voted to ban guns. But now nobody knows better than she does the need for an organization like SDCGO to help educate the elected before they make horribly bad votes like this.”

    Voting to support the decimation of an amendment should be a career-ender. And we are going to make sure it is. Fortunately, all we have to do is shine the light in her direction and the voters and donors are already starting to understand. There is no need for interpretation here. No need for hyperbole. We just point out the vote.

    During her statement before the vote that night she said, “This is just the beginning.” Let’s nip this in the bud rather than wait and then wonder how anti-Second Amendment people get into office.

  7. “A supporter of hers asked me what Gaspar could do now. I said she needs to donate to our organization.”

    I was asked the same thing. My answer was simple: sign the SDCGOA pledge release this statement, read the statement on camera, and upload the video to youtube:

    “My vote on Encinitas Resolution 2013-03 was a profound mistake which I regret. My vote and explanation, in favor of a federal legislation to deny law-abiding citizens, their God-given right to self-defense, was because of my misunderstanding of the US Constitution and Bill of Rights. I promise to never infringe upon those civil rights again”

    I’d throw my support to her immediately.

  8. The voters took her word for it when they voted her in and she swore to uphold the Constitution. She didn’t honor that pledge.

  9. Donate money and all is forgiven.

    A Leopard cannot change its spots.

    No amount of money would ever get me to accept this person.

    You don’t “change your mind” on the Constitution and the Bill of Rights.


    I guess this is why Michael hates me.

  10. “Donate money and all is forgiven.”

    Michael Schwartz wrote no such thing. Read his comment again.

    “I guess this is why Michael hates me.”

    We doubt that very much. But, if he has some issue with you, we suggest taking a look at whether you twist the comments of others into something never said.

  11. Never said Michael said it.
    Read all the comments before you comment on others.

    Brian Brady says:
    December 1, 2015 at 5:32 pm

    “A supporter of hers asked me what Gaspar could do now. I said she needs to donate to our organization.”

  12. Harold,

    Did you see the quotation marks? Brian was quoting what Michael said. So yes, it was Michael who said it, but it was you who failed to read the entire comment because Michael followed with:

    “I said, ‘No, we won’t support her. She voted to ban guns. But now nobody knows better than she does the need for an organization like SDCGO…'”

    No one on this site claimed that they would support a gun control supporter, or anyone else for that matter, in exchange for money.

  13. Ditto, HQ.

    Harold, do you not see that Michael wrote it first, Brian was quoting Michael, and then neither of them suggested a quid pro quo?

    Yes, we do read all the comments. It’s more important to understand them as well.

  14. My name is Dale Pilat and I am a candidate for Vista city council. I am seeking support from your organization and would like to schedule a meeting to talk about my campaign! I am a wounded warrior Afghanistan veteran who fully supports the 2nd Amendment and the right to carry/CCW. If you would like to call me, I can be reached at 760-855-8593. Thank you for your time! Respectfully, Dale Pilat

  15. I am a member of the Gun Owner’s of San Diego and after what I have been through (particularly in terms of the mischaracterization of my actions), I think Kristin Gaspar AND Michael Schwartz BOTH deserve a fair hearing.

    I recently spoke with Michael Schwartz in reference to Kristin Gaspar’s comments; and he didn’t tell me to ask her to make a donation to the Gun Owner’s of San Diego PAC.

    He told me he was concerned about her comments and in fact, nothing was likely to change his mind about his decision to give her the rating he gave her.

    I respect that.

    As an outspoken member of the Second Amendment community who lives in Encinitas I am looking forward to hearing Kristen Gaspar clarify her comments.

    This issue hits particularly home to me as I was falsely accused of a violent felony in 2011 (involving a firearm). A process server I didn’t recognize or expect at our home well after dark became hostile and belligerent; I tried to call the Sheriff’s department but my phone wasnt working properly.

    Ladies and gentlemen, that was nearly FIVE YEARS and ONE MILLION DOLLARS AGO.

    Needless to say, being falsely accused of anything – particularly a firearms crime – can carry life changing consequences.

    Kristin Gaspar has been understanding and deeply sympathetic to what happened in my case and now more than ever before understands we MUST foster a political climate which does NOT use homeowner’s lawfully defending hearth and home as political scapegoats for others standing for election.

    2012 was an election year, its my firm belief a calculated decision was made to ‘turn up the heat’ on those accused of ‘gun crimes’ in an effort to pacify a certain portion of the electorate.

    Well as you can imagine, in ‘turning up the heat’ they are also running the risk of ruining more than a few innocent lives.

    Every single wrongful arrest represents an individual; a parent, a husband, a father, a friend, a brother and a sister.

    How many of you would be prepared to learn your husband or father or son or daughter was wrongfully arrested?

    How many of you would be prepared to loan that person $50,000 – $100,000 for the very best criminal defense attorney available?

    Me neither.

    To say this was a ‘life changing experience’ is the understatement of the century; if affects how you look at the world, how you trust others, how you interact with your family, etc.

    And if you can SURVIVE, and take the case ALL THE WAY TO TRIAL and WIN, count yourself fortunate.

    I know I do.

    According to statistics by the Office of the San Diego County District Attorney, FEWER THAN ONE IN 500 of those ACCUSED of a violent felony are found NOT GUILTY BY JURY VERDICT.

    I am in that group.

    But so what?

    Just HAVING TO DEFEND A FALSE ALLEGATION is ENORMOUSLY EXPENSIVE; it takes a tremendous amount of energy and personal resolve.

    To make a long story short, I actually wound up being SENTENCED to FOUR MONTHS CUSTODY due to a mistake the judge made.

    Then my lawyer I hired to appeal disappeared – literally leaving me to fend for myself.

    Four years later, my conviction was ultimately reversed; the lawyer (a former San Diego County deputy District Attorney himself) is no longer eligible to practice law and the case was ultimately dropped.

    I am particularly appreciative of the encouragement and insight I’ve gotten along the way from so many friends INCLUDING Michael Schwartz.

    Mike is an outspoken advocate of the Second Amendment; he’s brought a level of attention to this issue which it VITALLY NEEDED.

    He’s been a strong supporter of Ed Peruta’s position against Sheriff Gore with respect to Ed’s right to obtain a CCW permit.

    Fundamentally, he’s opposed to the politicization of ‘gun cases’ at the expense of the lawfully armed.

    He certainly wouldn’t want anyone he know’s to suffer the unimaginable indignity my family and I have suffered for almost five years; an oppressive experience brought on IN LARGE MEASURE simply because I happen to be a gun owner.

  16. Not sure why I deserve a “hearing.” I’ve been crystal clear with my comments.

    And I’m not “concerned about Gaspar’s comments.” I’m deeply disturbed by her anti-gun voting record and she has earned our opposition. It’s ridiculous to think otherwise.

    She voted for a gun ban. There is no way our group will ever and can ever support a candidate with that enormous stain on her voting record.

  17. Mr. Burleson,

    Mayor Gaspar knows about the 2A discussion, and how it relates to her support of 2013-03, for over 5 weeks now. If she wanted to “clarify” her position, she could do it right here in the comments stream (as you have done).

    Her silence should not be attributed to anything other than her desire to violate our civil rights.

    You would do her a great service by inviting her to post a comment, as soon as possible.

  18. It’d be interesting to see what she says her views are this week.

    My guess is her next move will be to switch parties and go to work for Qualcomm.

    Didn’t we already see this movie?

    John Wooden says character is what you do when nobody is looking.

    Her statement now is meaningless. She’s running for office. The night she voted to ban guns she said that the gun ban law was “just the beginning”. There is no statement she can make just two years later in an election year that will change that.

  19. “There is no statement she can make just two years later in an election year that will change that.”

    Oh I disagree; people can learn and change.

    Governor Reagan signed the Mulford Act in 1967 (in what, could only be described as “fear of a black gun owner”). Many Republicans delegate their critical thinking skills to police union bosses, reclaim those skills, and make the right decision.

    It’s easy to say “Molon Labe”. It’s much harder to educate, encourage, and reward fidelity to the Constitution. More importantly Michael, you’ve given Mayor Gaspar no good incentive to recant publicly.

    This is an election between a gun grabber, a land grabber, and a free speech grabber — horrible choices for San Diegans. I’d like to see one of them do a public mea culpa and start governing within the confines of the Constitution.

  20. Recant in an off election year and then support those words with actions. She fooled us once…shame on her.
    Fool us twice……….

    This is seriously all the same resistance I got a few years ago with another golden child. If we lived in Texas…ok, let’s believe her, but we live in California and gun owners are under heavy political attack. No room for a gun banners.

  21. “Recant in an off election year and then support those words with actions”

    I never suggested that you support her; I said to give her an incentive to recant. You just telegraphed that, no matter what she says, she will never be able to learn and evolve to the right position.

    Whether you reward these people with a carrot or not what political action committees do. Whacking about the stick, at every transgression you see, is what clubs do

  22. I don’t mean to telegraph or imply anything.
    I mean to be crystal clear.
    There’s really nothing she can do right now while she’s trying to fool Republicans in an election year to prove that she is anything but an enemy to the Second Amendment.
    If what she’s saying is true and she has seen the light and is all of a sudden a huge supporter of the Second Amendment, then I am positive her actions over the next few years while serving as mayor will show her sudden deep commitment. A commitment that goes way way back for like a year and a half now. That kind of deep commitment.
    The year and a half long, election year kind of deep.
    The kind of understanding that she has really grown into suddenly in an election year while trying to explain her vote for a gun ban. And explain it to a group of voters and donors who support the Second Amendment.

    And if not receiving our support prevents her from recanting, doesn’t that prove that she’s really not sincere?

  23. “I just watched the video of the vote and her comments show that she is clueless about the Second Amendment, public safety, and the role of government.” -Brian Brady

    She can recant her heart out. It won’t change what you accurately articulated above.

  24. I think you misunderstand me, Michael. What will you do if this gun grabber is elected? You’ve lost all political leverage with her.

    Look at what you did with the former gun grabber Jim Desmond in San Marcos. He intended to run Turner’s out of town a couple of years ago and now he gets a thumbs up from SDGOA.

  25. Brian, if she gets elected we will continue to judge her on her voting record and her efforts. Right now her voting record and effort to get guns banned is as horrible as it gets.

    I don’t care if she recants or pays lip service months before a tough election in a district that generally like their guns.

    Remember when Gore told the Central Committee he’d follow the judge’s ruling? So he got endorsed. The judge ruled. He’s not following.
    I hope to see her evolve on her Second Amendment views. But I’m not taking her word for it. I’ll wait to see what she does rather than believe her when she tells me what she knows I want to hear.

  26. I think we are talking past one another. I don’t suggest you or SDGOA endorse her in this election but I’m questioning the tactic of “never endorse a gun grabber”.

    Forget Gaspar (forget all three candidates in this election–they all violate the Bill of Rights). I am more concerned about an attitude which suggests candidates can’t learn and change.

    Local Council members and Mayors, are generally nice enough people with little or no training or education on the law, the Constitution, or principles. This Supervisor’s election is a prime example of that.

    It’s important to stop tyranny at the local level (when it is just uneducated, nice people reacting to a mob) but it’s equally as important to educate these people before the mob elects them to a state or federal office.

  27. I have said repeatedly that I am happy to meet with her and talk to her in order to educate her. I have left a voicemail for her and emailed her with no response. I welcomed her to our Christmas Party tomorrow, but she is not coming. Not sure what else I should do or what else she could do to prove her hostility towards gun owners.

    But I need to be clear…no matter what she does in an election year….becomes a SDCGO member, attends our Christmas Party, talks to me, goes to the range with me…she will not get our approval, a better rating, or any support from us. It is important to stop her political career here and now.

    Personally, I hope she’s seen the light, but as a politician, this needs to be the end of the road. Here and now.

    Frankly…I don’t believe what she says.

    Regarding the gun ban vote, in the same email she indicated she didn’t understand what she was voting for and implied she’d been mislead on the gun vote. In her comments the night she voted for the gun ban she proved she knew exactly what she was voting for and said it was “just the beginning”.

    I have more regarding her lack of honesty, but I am saving that for another day and a bigger audience.

    I hope she continues whatever political conversion she is selling you all, but she needs to do it while no longer elected.

  28. “I hope she continues whatever political conversion she is selling you all,”

    You’re talking past me. I said this:

    “Forget Gaspar (forget all three candidates in this election–they all violate the Bill of Rights). I am more concerned about an attitude which suggests candidates can’t learn and change.”

    Let me restate my position; the best candidate for the Board of Supervisors is “none of the above”. But THIS is exactly what I’m talking about:

    “But I need to be clear…no matter what she does in an election year…. It is important to stop her political career here and now.”

    With one paragraph, you killed any leverage you have in Encinitas. Had you taken that attitude with Jim Desmond, the whole San Marcos Council would be in the thumbs down column and Turner’s would be in Escondido. Lorraine Wood would be in the thumbs down column and the Gunthers would be selling teddy bears online.

    You’re not being consistent in your approach. If you were, Wood and Desmond would be on their way out. Frankly, I prefer the old approach better–it gives people the right incentive to do the right things.

  29. Desmond NEVER voted for anything anti-gun, Brian. He took my call and we had a great conversation. He took the time to educate himself before he voted. He has been very supportive in word and deed. There is no comparison between the two people or how they lead.

    You are comparing two totally different situations. Had Desmond voted for and made statements in favor of a gun ban…he would have an enormous mountain to climb too.

    I’ve reached out to her and been ignored. I’ve uncovered a voting record and brought it to everyone’s attention. I’ve pointed out to supporters that she is lying with her horrible explanation of why she voted to ban and grab guns.
    She’s not a child and this is politics. Saying “sorry” and promising to do better doesn’t cut it.
    She voted to ban guns and made sure to tell everyone she wanted it to be just the beginning before she voted. She has made alost no attempt to do better. There is no way to more thoroughly gut an amendment to the Constitution than ban the very types of firearms the Amendment was written to protect.

    If we continue to let this kind of behavior go, we will continue to get the same bad results.

  30. Brian, this isn’t a zoning dispute, Gaspar voted to ban the most popular gun in America, what many recognize as the symbol of American freedom. Her comments make it obvious she has adopted the Democrat party’s ideals regarding taking our freedoms and security away from us.

    She’s a gun-grabber and no endorsement from Michael or SDCGO will change that.

  31. Scott,

    Please point out where I said SDGOA or Michael Schwartz should endorse Kristin Gaspar. I said (at least twice) that both he and the organization should not endorse her.

    My issue, (which I discussed with Michael in person tonight) was not to telegraph the “never” position; it leaves little incentive for the wrong people to start making the right votes.

    I am reminded of this Milton Friedman statement:

  32. MISTAKE on my part.

    Mayor Gaspar sent me a Facebook message on Thursday at 5pm. I did not find it until 10 minutes ago.

    I said she did not reach out to me. She did, I just did not see it until now.

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