So far we’ve had two winners (the Labor Council and Kevin Faulconer) in our ongoing account of who won and lost in Tuesday’s election. Remember, obviously some candidates won, some lost. But for this, the winners are the people who proved their mettle. Or they are the interest groups that are now better off or more powerful after the election. And I’m looking for your participation. Your e-mails so far have helped (there is currently a debate about City Council Donna Frye raging in my inbox — did she come out stronger after Tuesday? Send your thoughts).

After two winners then, let’s talk about some that didn’t come out so well Tuesday night.

Losers: The Tigers of the San Diego Republican Party. Who are the Tigers? The actual Republican Party of San Diego, led by Tony Krvaric. The Lincoln Club. And, finally, Coronado Communications, whose consultants — Duane Dichiara and Jennifer Jacobs — are like San Diego’s representatives of the movement that was supposedly creating a permanent Republican majority nationwide.

The Tigers are so named because they are brutal. They are hunters. They look at the world the way it is — not the way they want it to be. It’s survival of the fittest. They exploit frustrations and divisions hoping that more people end up on their side than the other. But they still believe you can brutalize your opponent from 9 to 5 and have a beer with them at 6 p.m.

Dichiara and Jacobs ran April Boling’s campaign in District 7 of the San Diego City Council. The Lincoln Club campaigned on her behalf as well. She lost. They ran Phil Thalheimer’s in District 1. The Lincoln Club sent mailers. The club sent so much junk in the mail, in fact, many seem to think that multiple mailers came sometimes in just one day. Yet Thalheimer lost. The two fiery consultants ran the campaigns of two Republican candidates for Chula Vista City Council. The Lincoln Club joined them and flooded Chula Vista homes with angry mailers. One of their council candidates definitely lost. The other race is too close to call.

Dichiara and Jacobs ran Chula Vista City Councilman John McCann’s run for state assembly. McCann lost.

In Chula Vista, trying to challenge City Councilman Steve Castaneda’s reelection, the Lincoln Club oddly thought it was a good idea to focus on the district attorney’s prosecution of Castaneda that ended in his acquittal and made the prosecutors look like imbeciles. Everyone in Chula Vista knew about the trial and knew about his acquittal. Trying to pretend like he was guilty was not going to work and it was simply not fair.

The Republican Party and Lincoln Club miscalculated on nearly all levels (though the Lincoln Club did support Kevin Faulconer and Donna Frye’s successful Proposition C).

I asked Dichiara for his thoughts.

He gave me one sentence:

“You can build the best sandcastle on Earth but if a tsunami comes, it’s not going to survive,” Dichiara said.

But Dichiara did win in District 5, in June. There, Carl DeMaio is poised to take his new City Council seat. He won in the primary and then was able to promptly get to high ground.


Dagny Salas was web editor at Voice of San Diego from 2010 to 2013. She was an investigative fellow at VOSD from 2009 to 2010.

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