It's a longshot and a rumor at this point, but mayoral appointee Jeff Sheehy, who today is attending his first Board of Supervisors meeting as District 8 supervisor, could face some immediate opposition from the city's progressive electorate, though then again he might not. The Examiner helped float the rumor on Monday that there's been discussion of a special election this November to try to oust Sheehy and replace him with someone more progressive in the seat formerly occupied by Scott Wiener something that has become very important to local lefty politicos as the balance of power on the Board shifted back to the moderate bloc following the election of Ahsha Safai to progressive supervisor John Avalos's District 11 seat.
And stakes are higher given that if Sheehy remains in office, gets elected in 2018, and succeeds again as an incumbent in 2022, he could remain on the Board for a full ten years.
But Beyond Chron's Randy Shaw tries to play pragmatic devil's advocate today saying that it behooves progressives to wait until a wider election takes place in 2018, especially because if their chosen candidate City College President Rafael Mandelman* were to lose a special election, it would hurt his chances of winning in a wider one. Also: Special elections cost a lot of money, in this case an estimated $3.7 million, and the city doesn't have any cash to spare right now.
Sheehy, as reported earlier, is an openly gay and HIV-positive community activist with a lengthy career in the city, having successfully lobbied to get San Francisco to become the first city in the country to require companies contracting with the city to provide equal benefits to domestic partners. And while it's accepted wisdom that mayoral appointees tend to be in the mayor's pocket and therefore pro-business and moderate we've yet to see how Sheehy will vote on things, and he's at least had a progressive past as the president of the Harvey Milk LGBT Democratic Club back in the 1990's.
Sheehy is married to a real estate agent, though, and has reportedly grown more moderate with time, living in Glen Park with his husband and daughter. Nevertheless, how he will side on various issues remains to be seen.
Former District 8 Supervisor Bevan Dufty calls Sheehy "ferocious," and Sheehy's husband described him to the Examiner as "tough as nails," adding, “Jeff cannot be bought, he cannot be bent, he cannot be broken."
The Examiner further suggests that one thing that could present a battle between Sheehy and the mayor was a $3 million cut in funding to the AIDS Housing Alliance, following the failure of Prop K.
* This post has been corrected to show that the progressives' chosen candidate is Rafael Mandelman, not Alex Randolph.