Over the past two weeks San Diego mailboxes have been flooded with mailers attacking Mayoral candidate Bob Filner from a group calling itself a committee called California for Small Business,” sponsored by the Neighborhood Market Association.” A quick visit to the group’s website confirms that OB’s Apple Tree Market is an active member of the group, with a video featuring the OB location on the front page of their website. It is basically the only supermarket within walking distance for many OB residents.
The anti-Filner mailers are remarkable for their venom directed at the Democratic contender and because they do not suggest an alternative candidate, despite the fact that Neighborhood Marketing Association has endorsed Nathan Fletcher and given money to his campaign. In short, they are “hit pieces.”
Another mailer has a grainy photo of the congressman in front of the Capitol, labeling him “out of touch” and implying that he did favors for donors. Yet another, sent to addresses in North Park, University Heights and Hillcrest, suggests that Filner is anti-gay. Filner has admitted that his position on issues relating to sexual orientation has evolved over the years, and is now counted upon as a reliably pro-gay congressman.
Two years ago the Neighborhood Market Association and two of its campaign committees paid a total of $14,000 in fines for failing to properly reveal their identities in political mailers they put out attacking the San Diego booze back in 2008. The group is aLa Mesa-based trade collection of liquor stores and markets run by Mark Arabo, a well known Chaldean Christian leader. Last October he met with President Obama calling upon him to put a stop to “ethnic cleansing” Arabo alleged was occurring in Iraq against Chaldeans.