Running for office is not an easy task, unless of course you run unchallenged.
Council Member Dominic Caserta does not have that luxury. He is running in a field of five other candidates for County Supervisor.
In June, we will be going to the polls to determine which two candidates make the November run-off.
Smart money is saying that Caserta will be in that final round.
Caserta polished his political savvy in his first eight years on Santa Clara City Council. He learned the navigation rules for building consensus and pushing through local legislation for our City.
After a four-year hiatus, Caserta returned to Council in 2014 with the intent of working his way into a more influential political position. With the retirement of Supervisor Ken Yeager, his soon-to-be-vacated position was a natural.
You might recall that Yeager was totally silent when the State voted to disband redevelopment agencies and claw back over $300 million of Santa Clara’s assets of cash, property and land.
It has been 40 years since Santa Clara has had representation at the County Supervisor level. It was Rod Diridon Sr. who helped our City gain political respect and influence in long term county planning.
However, the absence of representation since those days has been costly for Santa Clara.
Caserta has been called a dissident, a scrapper, a bootstrap politician who calls it as he sees it. There is something refreshing in those handles. There is no question that Caserta is passionate about politics.
What we have learned about Caserta, he is also passionate about his commitments.
If he says he will do it, he will scrap to make it happen.
While showing his enthusiasm on Council, he has often been on the minority vote of this divided body which, from most appearances, lacks basic common sense on too many issues.
Kudos to Caserta for not caving in to political pressure when it came decision time.
Without apology Caserta seeks endorsements across party lines and political philosophies. His ability to raise funds takes no back seat. At last count his campaign war chest was heading north of $350,000.
He has over 1,000 endorsements of major key players from Silicon Valley and elected representatives in Sacramento. The only two endorsements he has lost are Mayor Lisa Gillmor and Council Member Teresa O’Neill. Which may prove not to be a loss. Retaliation does not work long term.
Perhaps as impressive as fund raising is Caserta’s campaign work ethic. He and his campaign volunteers have already canvassed the entire territory of District 4. This includes all residents of Santa Clara, Campbell and a section of San Jose that is wedged in between that includes Santana Row. The District has a total population of nearly 400,000 residents and he is beginning his next round of visits.
If ever Santa Clara is going to have County representation, this would be the year. We have gone too long without a voice which includes our City.
With so many huge projects and proposals like VTA, BART and the airport, along with new regional developments, Santa Clara needs a passionate voice at the negotiating table.
Dominic Caserta can bring that voice, representation and passion.
Send your thoughts by email as a Letter to the Editor: SCWeekly@ix.netcom.com