Illustration by Adriana Heldiz

The presidential election is a real brain-drain, a clown car, a soul-sucking oxygen fire that struts and frets its hour upon the stage.

We get the temptation to tune out. But don’t. There are a ton of important races and issues on the November ballot. 

See for yourself.

The staff here at VOSD put together an election guide that provides an overview of the major contests, the players and the basic points of contention. We’ve also included links to other media articles and resources that’ll get you up to speed before filling out your ballot or visiting one of those “superpolls” on Election Day.

Oh, you don’t know what a “superpoll” is? Read on then.

We also walked through the five local ballot measures for the city of San Diego on the latest VOSD Podcast. Voters, for instance, will be asked to create a new independent police oversight group that has subpoena power. We’re referring in-house to Measure D as the “Andy Keatts Measure” because it came in response to his reporting about a school trustee. 

In the meantime, give us your questions about voting, the election and local races. Our editor in chief, Scott Lewis, will host a live Reddit AMA on Monday from 2-3 p.m. in r/sandiego. Seriously, what do you want to know? Submit your questions here.

School Reopening Plan Meant to Address Inequities Might Have Created More

“Phase one” of San Diego Unified’s reopening plan has been pitched as a districtwide effort that would help all the vulnerable students who need it. But expectations aren’t living up to the reality, reports Will Huntsberry. 

In fact, it appears many schools across the district do not have plans to open for phase one at all. 

The director of the principals union told Huntsberry that of the 25 or 30 principals she has talked to, at least half say they have no one, or just a single teacher, willing to return. 

Phase one, as district leaders have called it, was designed to help special education students and those who have fallen far behind during distance learning. The idea is that they would be able to return to campus for as much in person services as they might need. 

One district leader had said some students might even be able to return all day everyday. But a group of principals directly refuted that claim, saying that referred to later phases and not phase one. 

In a district document obtained by Huntsberry, district officials also admitted some students will have in-person access to psychiatrists and speech pathologists while others will not. 

The return to campus is voluntary for teachers during phase one. 

Gonzalez Spending Big to Reinstate Affirmative Action

Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez has used her time and voice to advocate against Proposition 22, the state ballot measure that would exempt app-based delivery drivers from AB 5, the law she wrote limiting when employers can classify workers as independent contractors. But she’s spending her political cash on another effort. 

In October alone, Gonzalez has spent more than $200,000 from a committee she controls in support of Prop. 16, which would allow the state to consider racial preferences when hiring or deciding which students to admit into universities. 

Companies are pouring an unprecedented $200 million to support Prop. 22, but Gonzalez told Sara Libby that she felt her money was better spent on Prop. 16. 

“I have a daughter who’s Black and Latina,” Gonzalez said. “I understand and see firsthand the structural racism that continues to exist in California and it’s deeply personal to me.”

Gonzalez is not the only local politician directing committee funds major initiatives this year. Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins and Mayor Kevin Faulconer do, too. 

Speaking of political spending …

The Politics Report has a breakdown of how independent expenditures (also known as PACs) are contributing to local races.

Reminder: PACs can’t coordinate with candidates when it comes to spending, and there’s no limit to how much someone can donate to one (because, speech, or whatever). 

Check out which local pols PACs are racing to support or oppose.

In Other News

The Morning Report was written by Jesse Marx, and edited by Sara Libby.

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