Councilwomen Jen Campbell and Monica Montgomery / Photos by Adriana Heldiz

On Thursday afternoon, as we sat down to record this podcast, a proverbial grenade was lobbed into our virtual podcast studio in the form of this letter. School Board Trustee Sharon Whitehurst-Payne released the letter in response to San Diego City Councilwoman Montgomery Steppe’s own letter from a few weeks ago requesting answers on a series of questions about Lincoln High School (as discussed on last week’s podcast).

Whitehurst-Payne’s response escalated things considerably, including by comparing Montgomery Steppe’s letter to a racist insult aimed at Lincoln students by students at a wealthy Catholic high school.

Hosts Scott Lewis, Andrew Keatts and Sara Libby read the letter with fresh eyes and unpacked its implications.

Another letter of interest this week came from the president CSU San Marcos as school officials defended their decision to keep a professor who harassed students.

All Politics Is Housing Politics

This week it was made official: The effort to recall San Diego City Council President Jen Campbell failed. One of the key issues that elevated the effort was housing — including her efforts to regulate vacation rentals on the coast and raising the coastal height limit in Midway.

Housing and homelessness are at the heart of most major political struggles in San Diego and across the state.

Lewis, Keatts and Libby on the show look ahead to the near future of housing politics and how one Senate bill could impact availability of homes — and how the recall’s failure may have revealed new opportunities for housing initiatives without fear of NIMBY retribution.

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Nate John is the digital manager at Voice of San Diego. He oversees Voice's website, newsletters, podcasts and product team. You can reach him at

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