These days, the recently re-christened UT San Diego seems to be a fan of San Diego city councilman and mayoral candidate Carl Demaio. Pension-hating missives such as this, this, and this suggest the paper’s editors, at least, sympathize with DeMaio’s emphasis on public-employee retirement plans as an apocalyptic scourge facing San Diegans.
It’s not hard to imagine UT San Diego issuing a DeMaio endorsement in the months ahead, particularly if the mayor’s race comes down to DeMaio versus Bob Filner.
But a sea change underlies UT San Diego’s apparent affection for DeMaio. When the two first met in 2005, when UT San Diego was still The San Diego Union-Tribune, the newspaper’s reaction could be characterized as somewhere between skeptical and “pffft.”
Nearly seven years ago, a Union-Tribune article headlined “Newcomer businessman wants a shot at fixing S.D.” introduced Carl DeMaio to America’s Finest City –and gave readers a glimpse of the worldview DeMaio was bringing to town:
Digging further into DeMaio’s local plans, reporter Caitlin Rother highlighted some apparent inconsistencies:
But for inconsistency, those were just appetizers. As a main course, the article expertly contrasted DeMaio’s stated principles with the realities of how he appears to have made his personal fortune:
The 2005 Union-Tribune article also questioned DeMaio’s references, noting “some wonder if his claims of having advised Gov. Schwarzenegger and President Bush are magnified by his own political aspirations.” Wonderers seemed to include Schwarzenegger’s director of communications, Rob Stutzman:
And given how poorly things were starting to go for George W. Bush in mid-2005, you’d think a shrewd would-be candidate would distance himself from the Bush administration. Carl seemed to feel otherwise — but oddly, it seems the Bush administration wanted to distance itself from Carl Demaio:
The Union-Tribune article also described the interesting circumstances under which DeMaio made initial contact with San Diego government:
Of course, by the time the Union-Tribune article appeared in 2005, DeMaio’s tune had changed somewhat: