Election stories you might have missed

As the Merry-Go-Round was cleaning out our files on the local election, we came across a few stories that never made it into the Alameda Sun:

Check the box

The certification of the results of the November 3 election for Alameda City Council has been placed on hold after the Alameda County Registrar of Voters reported receiving a box of ballots delivered by Alameda firefighters.

Acting Deputy Fire Chief Jeff DelBono told the Registrar that the firefighters had discovered the box during an inspection of one of the six polling places used during the election.  Chief DelBono said he had ordered the inspection after getting complaints that “fire-code violations” had prevented “working families” from casting ballots there.

County Registrar of Voters Tim Dupuis said that the box contained 1,096 ballots, one more than the margin held by former Mayor Trish Spencer over incumbent Councilman Jim Oddie for the second open Council seat.  Lying underneath the stack of ballots was a flyer for the IAFF Local 689 toy program.

Mr. Dupuis said that a preliminary review showed that all of the ballots had been marked only for the Alameda City Council race – and only for one candidate.  “It’s a real oddie-ty,” he remarked.


Vice Mayor John Knox White will not be attending the next Council meeting on
December 1.

In a press release, the City announced that Mayor Marilyn Ezzy Ashcraft had given Mr. Knox White a “time-out” as a result of his petulant behavior after the defeat of
Measure Z.  “He just needs to learn to settle down and act like a proper little gentleman,” the Mayor said.

Ms. Ashcraft said that, after his return, Mr. Knox White will be provided with a special elevated chair – a “high chair,” she called it – to sit in during Council meetings.  “It will make it easier for him to look down on the rest of us,” she explained.

Mr. Knox White confirmed that he would not be attending the December 1 meeting, but he vigorously denied that Mayor Ashcraft had barred him.  He was simply “carrying out the will of the voters,” he maintained.

New job for Jim

Public Works director Erin Smith announced that the City had entered into a no-bid contract with defeated Councilman Jim Oddie for him to continue the pothole-filling and sidewalk-repairing work that he featured in his campaign literature.

The contract is conditioned upon Mr. Oddie successfully completing the apprenticeship program administered by the laborers’ union.  Since the program focuses on teaching workers to follow union rules, Mr. Oddie said he anticipated no problem.

“If there’s one thing I know,” he said, “it’s how to do what the union tells me to.”

Mr. Oddie also has been hired to perform janitorial work at City Hall, officials disclosed.  “He’s shown he’s good at trash talking,” one said.  “Let’s see how good he is at trash hauling.”

Equity action

Actors’ Equity Association, the union representing theatrical performers and stage managers, has filed a complaint with the National Labor Relations Board against Councilwoman Malia Vella.

The complaint alleges that, in her campaign mailers, Ms. Vella used photographs of an infant named “Theo” without paying him the prevailing wage rate for child actors.  It also alleged that Theo was made to sit for a photo session during required break time when he would have preferred a nap.  “Look at the picture,” an Equity spokesperson said.  “Who’s the only one who’s not smiling?”

Ms. Vella dismissed the complaint as the work of a “bunch of old white men who have it in for women of color.”

In any event, she added, the theatrical union’s contract didn’t cover Theo because he has been a member of Teamsters Local 856 since birth.

Rudy to the rescue

Backers of the unsuccessful “Yes on Z” campaign have retained well-known New York attorney Rudy Giuliani to file a series of lawsuits contesting the outcome of the
November 3 election.

Although the election results published by the Alameda County Registrar of Voters showed that Measure Z lost by 20 percentage points, Mr. Giuliani declared that Alameda voters in fact had passed the measure.  “There’s been a massive fraud,” he said.

Asked for supporting evidence, Mr. Giuliani said he had photographs of “No on Z” campaign manager Tony Daysog mingling with voters at the West End farmers’ market.  “It’s obvious that he’s there spreading misinformation,” the lawyer claimed.  “What do you think he’s doing – telling stories about Ralph Appezzato?”

The “Yes on Z” campaign, which has nothing left from the $100,000+ it spent on the election, is seeking donations to finance the battle.  Any balance remaining after paying Mr. Giuliani will be used to cover legal bills still owed by Council members Jim Oddie and Malia Vella for their defense in the fire-chief scandal.

About Robert Sullwold

Partner, Sullwold & Hughes Specializes in investment litigation
This entry was posted in City Hall, Firefighters and tagged , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

11 Responses to Election stories you might have missed

  1. Anonymous says:

    This is pure gold — thank you! 🙂

  2. Matthatter says:


  3. Alex Petrich says:

    This is great! Thanks! A nice antidote!

  4. The Sun’s crack reporters are on early holiday. We congratulate Bob Sullwold on breaking these important stories.

    Dennis Evanosky
    Alameda Sun

  5. Joyce Boyd says:

    Bob, I read the first story and believed every word! Your satire was way to close to the truth. Thank you for the good laugh.

  6. Robert Schrader says:

    The fact that these stories are somewhat believable is the real story here. Good to have a sense of humor about the whole thing – and great satire! I especially like Dennis’s comments above – as I have submitted items to the Alameda Sun myself, and have always enjoyed my interactions with Dennis. Good to see a light touch emerge – kudos to you, Bob, for bringing some light to us for the holidays.

  7. Linda S says:

    Thanks Robert… happy holidays..thanks for keeping us entertained. 🙃

  8. Kabul Legal Services, attorney for Al Qaeda says:

    Our client, demands an immediate cease and desist from Malia Vella for unauthorized and uncompensated use of their patented and trademarked hostage video and human shield techniques.

    While our client is generally supportive of the Council Member’s tireless efforts to drain Alameda’s taxpayers and “Stick it to The Man” (to use the infidel vernacular) such unauthorized piracy of their intellectual property cannot be abided. Should royalty payments not be immediately tendered, our client will have no other option but to seek damages.

  9. Patricia Gannon says:

    Hi, Bob:

    I loved the latest merry-Go-Round: It had me laughing out loud. Thanx for doing that. We all need a good laugh.

    Happy Thanksgiving to you and Jane.

    Pat Gannon

    On Sun, Nov 22, 2020 at 4:54 PM Alameda Merry-Go-Round wrote:

    > Robert Sullwold posted: “As the Merry-Go-Round was cleaning out our files > on the local election, we came across a few stories that never made it into > the Alameda Sun: Check the box The certification of the results of the > November 3 election for Alameda City Council has been” >

  10. Paul Foreman says:

    Just got around to reading it. It is a real prize. Puts Saturday Night Live to shame!

  11. Mary Jacak says:

    Alameda’s very own edition of The Onion!

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