By now LAUSD District 1 voters’ have been inundated with campaign mailers and robo calls attacking the credibility of long time child advocate, educator and district administrator George McKenna.
However, what really has so many citizens alarmed about the campaign mail aimed at discounting McKenna, are partial or full quotes, misleading statements of the facts and in some cases outright lies.
A recent mailer even had the Sentinel’s (old) masthead attached to a story that reported on the child molestation case at Miramonte School. In the article District Assistant Superintendent George McKenna's name was never mentioned however, placing the masthead next to blatant campaign propaganda gave the appearance that the Sentinel had blamed him for the problem, which is not and never was the case.
Noted Times columnist Sandy Banks, who has covered McKenna for years, wrote an article pointing out all of the misrepresentations and tricks that the Johnson Campaign has used to attack McKenna. One such misrepresentation reads as follows: Board members blamed McKenna for the district's budget problems; they'd granted bigger pay raises than he'd advised and wound up in a hole. That's what Johnson's mailers now call McKenna's "fiscal mismanagement." (LA Times - July 26, 2014)
Another Los Angeles Times writer Jim Newton reported that Johnson supporters have sent out "a scurrilous piece of mail that questioned McKenna's integrity based on ripping newspaper quotes wildly out of context". (LA Times - July 27, 2014)
Local union SEIU 99, charter school organizations and other very wealthy individuals have pumped hundreds of thousands of dollars into the Alex Johnson campaign with the hopes of finding a way to dilute McKenna's overwhelming respect, popularity and unwavering reputation for putting children first and fighting for what is best for the children of this district.
"I have received several mailers about why not to vote for George McKenna, but I have not received a single piece of mail or phone call telling me why I should vote for Alex Johnson," stated one long time resident of the district who refused to give their name for fear of retribution from the Johnson Campaign and his supporters.
Congresswoman Maxine Waters blasted Johnson for such shameful campaign tactics and called for Johnson to pull out of the race because “he is not qualified to lead”.
Congresswoman Karen Bass and former School Board Member Genethia Hudley-Hayes have had similar comments about the Johnson Campaign. Both women have released statements emphatically supporting McKenna, and called Johnson’s campaign tactics questioning McKenna’s credibility and character -the lowest forms of campaign rhetoric.