Local Democrats gave their endorsement last night to San Diego Unified school board candidate Kevin Beiser, a middle school math teacher running against current board member Katherine Nakamura, and to incumbent John de Beck. The choices were unanimous.

Here are some interesting points about their endorsements:

• Dems picked Beiser, a Democrat, over Nakamura, also a Democrat. That means Nakamura is fighting her own political party to keep her seat. A third Democratic candidate, Stephen Rosen, didn’t participate in the endorsement process.

Jess Durfee, leader of the local Democrats, said Beiser won out over Nakamura partly because he backed the project labor agreement, which ties school construction work to workplace guarantees that unions want. Nakamura opposed the labor pact.

“He strongly support teachers and is willing to find other places to cut,” Durfee said. “He also has the classroom experience.”

This is only the latest Democratic endorsement for Beiser, who has won love from the left by pledging to keep classes small and playing up his expertise and awards as a teacher.

Why is Nakamura losing that love? Check out our article about Nakamura’s battles with labor, in particular, for some perspective on why the left might be unhappy with her.

• While Dems have talked about labor clashes as one reason to steer clear of Nakamura, they gave their nod to de Beck, another Democrat who’s been at odds with labor.

That means the Dems are going a different direction than the teachers union, the most potent labor group in this election. Teachers have endorsed a Republican opponent, Scott Barnett, denying de Beck their blessing for the first time in his lengthy career on the school board. They didn’t endorse anybody in the race to unseat Nakamura.


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