(8.15.10 Disclosure: My union, CSEA, endorsed Wood, and I volunteer on his campaign.)
Carl Wood is the Democratic candidate for the CA 65th Assembly District, the most depressed area in the nation after Detroit. Carl is a lifelong labor guy with deep roots in the community. As Public Utilities Commissioner, Carl Wood helped guide the state through the disastrous energy crisis, protecting the interests of workers and working class utility consumers.
Wood is unapologetically liberal and direct, in a very pleasant way. Here he is at the California Democratic Convention last April 2010:
Crossposted at dKos
Even if California passes Prop 25, the Majority Budget Initiative, Californians will still need a 2/3 majority to address the structural revenue deficit in the state budget. We’ll need 2/3 to counter the Yacht Party, and we need more progressive Democrats to lend our own team a bit more moxie.
Carl Wood is not afraid to regulate. He’s not even afraid to say “regulate,” and sadly, that is saying something these days. Too many Democrats are still self-censored captives of right wing frames. Carl has already completed a public career, and he’s not afraid to be a one termer, if that’s the price for voting based on policy rather than politics.
Wood wrote a forward to the book Democracy and Regulation: How the Public can Govern Essential Services, by Greg Palast, Jerrold Oppenheim and Theo MacGregor (Pluto Press: 2003). One choice bit, among many:
Arguments against democratic oversight of any aspect of the economy, exalting commercial secrecy over regulatory openness, supposed private efficiency and vigor over governmental bureaucracy and torpor, ultimately boil down to the justification used by Mussolini’s defenders: “He made the trains run on time.” But, as this book so persuasively demonstrates, it is democratic processes that make the utilities run better, cheaper, more efficiently and more reliably.
We need Democrats who can persuade voters to fight for their own interests, especially in the CA 65th, where the unemployment rate is second only to that of Detroit. Who will boldly assert we need more jobs, more state revenue, and less genuflecting to the free market? Carl Wood.