I was raised by liberal Jewish parents in the Bay Area. From early on, I was taught that it was our obligation to help those who had trouble taking care of themselves: people, animals and the planet as a whole. It’s that attitude that led me to Democratic politics. In college, I was the president of the UCSD Democrats and then I started working on campaigns, including that of Congressman Bob Filner.

I then became an entrepreneur. I founded CompleteCampaigns which provided political technology to campaigns throughout the nation, including to Bonnie Dumanis, Bob Filner, Nathan Fletcher & Carl DeMaio. I’ve since sold that company and moved on to my next project. With each company, I tried to bring the same sense of obligation: a company should not just be about making money but also about improving the lives of employees and of customers.

And today, it’s that same attitude that has led me to my decision to endorse Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher for Mayor. I strongly considered both Bob Filner & Bonnie Dumanis — two people I respect highly. However, I am endorsing Assemblyman Fletcher because he is the candidate best able to move San Diego forward. He is the candidate best able to improve the lives of San Diegans across the spectrum: business owners like myself, those working hard in 9-5 jobs to support themselves and their families, and those who have hit really hard times and are now underemployed or unemployed.

I will not agree with Assemblyman Fletcher on every issue and will likely strongly disagree with him on many. But Nathan Fletcher has shown an unfortunately rare trait in modern politics — a willingness to listen and to work across party boundaries. He is willing and able to break away from traditional ideas and pointless fights to focus on creative, entrepreneurial solutions to our city’s problems.

While I strongly support Nathan Fletcher on his own merits, I also support him because he is the best candidate to beat Carl DeMaio. At CompleteCampaigns, I had the opportunity to work with hundreds of candidates of both parties for various offices around the nation. Carl DeMaio is one of the worst. I’m hard-pressed to think of a more disingenuous and self-serving candidate. DeMaio rails against government waste while spending tens of thousands of dollars on self promoting mailers, pointless iPhone apps and assorted PR stunts. Where San Diego has benefited from a general attitude of mutual respect, Carl DeMaio wants to turn us into a political war-zone, the “Wisconsin of the West.”

The choice between two candidates is rarely more stark. Nathan Fletcher wants us to work together to move forward and to build a better city. As for Carl DeMaio, I can not for the life of me figure out what he really wants — but it’s clearly not to help San Diego.

Join me. Join Nathan Fletcher. Let’s work together for San Diego’s future.

Benjamin A. Katz is CEO of JSX, Inc. How will you be voting next month? Submit your thoughts here.

Benjamin Katz

Serial entrepreneur. Currently CEO of JSX and Givalike.org. Previously founder and CEO of CompleteCampaigns.com. Interests include nonprofits, parenting,...

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