By Lee Hubbard
The race for District 5 in San Francisco is heating up, with some of Christina Olague’s opponents are beginning to say, “Anybody but Olague.”
As the supervisor appointed by Mayor Ed Lee, she has been viewed by many as the frontrunner in the race from the start, with the support of the mayor and former Mayor Willie Brown.
This backing however, has caused some concerns in District 5 –Lower Pacific Heights, Haight Ashbury, Fillmore, Western Addition and Japan Town –where there are those who feel the district’s political independence is threatened.
“I don’t think she makes good decisions as a supervisor,” said Thea Selby, a small business owner and a candidate in the race. “She has too many competing interests to cover, from Mayor Lee to Rose Pak. She is also not knowledgeable on the issues, and she is really new to the area.”
“There are some candidates who will not represent all of the district and to me, that is Olague,” said London Breed, the head of the African American Cultural Center who is also a candidate in the race.
Olague, however, emphasizes she is an independent voice.
“I see myself as a progressive leader,” she said.
She points to her political break with the mayor when she voted against his attempt to remove Ross Mirkirami as the San Francisco Sheriff after he pled to domestic battery against his wife.
“This is not an issue of domestic violence, though we have to take that issue seriously,” said Olague. “This is about the power of the mayor and official misconduct. And I don’t think (Mirkarimi’s) actions rose to that level.”
She said she voted to keep Mirkarimi in office because she felt the mayor overstepped his boundaries.
Shelby argues Olague’s vote was a political decision in a district where Mirkarimi had been a supervisor and remains very popular.