The Swarm

Mix it up with The Bee's editorial board.

September 16, 2011
Mayor Johnson gets a quick business endorsement

Well, that didn't take long.

Just two days after Mayor Kevin Johnson announced his re-election bid, the Sacramento Metro Chamber's political action committee announced its backing today.

It's no surprise: the Metro Chamber PAC also supported Johnson in 2008 over incumbent Heather Fargo.

But the endorsement could mean big bucks. The PAC is registered with the city as a Large Political Committee, which allows it to give more in campaign cash than you or me. A large committee can donate as much as $10,100 per election to mayoral candidates and $5,050 to City Council hopefuls, compared to the individual limits of $3,050 and $1,500.

In a statement, Metro PAC Chair Ardie Zahedan said that while business leaders might disagree at times with the mayor, he is a "champion for businesses and pro-business policies" and has raised Sacramento's profile, which aids in recruiting business.

"We believe Mayor Johnson is the right choice for Sacramento as we did in 2008," Zahedan said. "The mayor has the right idea of making Sacramento more business-friendly. This town was founded as a crossroads of commerce, and we need elected leaders like the mayor who understand that when businesses are able to prosper, the community is better for it."

Even if Johnson gets a serious opponent, he will get the lion's share of business support. The more intriguing question is how much labor backing he gets.

Particularly this year, he has made it a point to reach out to labor leaders in his initiatives and has pledged to act as an honest broker between labor and business.

We'll see if it pays off in Johnson's campaign coffers.

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About The Swarm

The Swarm is written by members of The Sacramento Bee's editorial board. They meet daily and are separate from the newsroom. Views included here are those of individual writers, and do not necessarily reflect those of a majority of the board or the positions expressed in The Bee's editorials.

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