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Mountain View mayor endorses Sajid Khan in race for Santa Clara County district attorney

Public defender Sajid Khan, who is looking to oust incumbent Jeff Rosen in the race for Santa Clara County district attorney next year, picked up local political support Wednesday with an endorsement from Mountain View Mayor Ellen Kamei.

Santa Clara County public defender Sajid Khan is running to become the county's next district attorney. Courtesy Sajid Khan.

Khan, who is advocating for a "true progressive" approach to criminal justice, announced Tuesday that Kamei is backing his run for district attorney in 2022. Kamei said in a statement that Khan is the right person to tackle root causes of crime in Santa Clara County in order to build safer communities.

"Sajid's commitment to restorative and racial justice is what we need in the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office," Kamei said. "I'm proud to endorse Sajid for Santa Clara County District Attorney and look forward to working with him as our next district attorney."

Khan, who has worked as a public defender in the county for 13 years, is running on a platform that opposes mass incarceration and coercive plea bargaining, and vows to hold police accountable when it comes to excessive use of force and racial profiling. He also supports the Black Lives Matter movement, and would seek to fight systemic racism as it exists in the criminal legal system, according to his campaign website.

District Attorney Rosen, who is seeking reelection and has already amassed $450,000 in campaign contributions, has not faced a serious challenge at the ballot box since taking office in 2011. He is considered tougher on crime than Khan, taking stances that include prosecuting some minors as adults and speaking in support of the county Sheriff's Office having a limited working relationship with federal immigration enforcement.

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Khan has been a vocal critic of Rosen's performance, arguing in a San Jose Inside op-ed that he has failed to prosecute police officers who used excessive force.

Though early on the campaign trail, the San Jose Police Officers Association has already come out against Khan, launching a campaign website attacking his views on criminal justice. The group hammered Khan for being soft on crime, for his opposition to "proactive" policing and his advocacy for reallocating police department funding.

Mountain View Mayor Ellen Kamei. Photo by Magali Gauthier.

Police reform has been a hot-button issue in Mountain View since the murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer in May 2020, prompting widespread protests and demands that the city defund its police department and revamp use of force policies. In response, the City Council launched a committee tasked with improving racial justice and building trust between police and people of color in Mountain View, on which Kamei served as the chair.

"Mayor Kamei has served her community long before she was elected and is committed to tackling many of the toughest issues facing our communities, including homelessness and racial inequity," Khan said in a statement Tuesday. "I am proud to have her support and look forward to working with her as the next Santa Clara County District Attorney."

Although Khan has picked up endorsements from former Congressman Mike Honda and state Assemblyman Alex Lee, Kamei is among a minority of local politicians who have come out in support of Khan so far. Rosen's reelection campaign has received endorsements from dozens of state and local elected officials, including all five members of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors. Mountain View council members Margaret Abe-Koga and Pat Showalter are also both listed among Rosen's supporters.

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Kevin Forestieri is an assistant editor with the Mountain View Voice and The Almanac. He joined the Voice in 2014 and has reported on schools, housing, crime and health. Read more >>

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Mountain View mayor endorses Sajid Khan in race for Santa Clara County district attorney

by / Mountain View Voice

Uploaded: Thu, Sep 2, 2021, 1:51 pm

Public defender Sajid Khan, who is looking to oust incumbent Jeff Rosen in the race for Santa Clara County district attorney next year, picked up local political support Wednesday with an endorsement from Mountain View Mayor Ellen Kamei.

Khan, who is advocating for a "true progressive" approach to criminal justice, announced Tuesday that Kamei is backing his run for district attorney in 2022. Kamei said in a statement that Khan is the right person to tackle root causes of crime in Santa Clara County in order to build safer communities.

"Sajid's commitment to restorative and racial justice is what we need in the Santa Clara County District Attorney's Office," Kamei said. "I'm proud to endorse Sajid for Santa Clara County District Attorney and look forward to working with him as our next district attorney."

Khan, who has worked as a public defender in the county for 13 years, is running on a platform that opposes mass incarceration and coercive plea bargaining, and vows to hold police accountable when it comes to excessive use of force and racial profiling. He also supports the Black Lives Matter movement, and would seek to fight systemic racism as it exists in the criminal legal system, according to his campaign website.

District Attorney Rosen, who is seeking reelection and has already amassed $450,000 in campaign contributions, has not faced a serious challenge at the ballot box since taking office in 2011. He is considered tougher on crime than Khan, taking stances that include prosecuting some minors as adults and speaking in support of the county Sheriff's Office having a limited working relationship with federal immigration enforcement.

Khan has been a vocal critic of Rosen's performance, arguing in a San Jose Inside op-ed that he has failed to prosecute police officers who used excessive force.

Though early on the campaign trail, the San Jose Police Officers Association has already come out against Khan, launching a campaign website attacking his views on criminal justice. The group hammered Khan for being soft on crime, for his opposition to "proactive" policing and his advocacy for reallocating police department funding.

Police reform has been a hot-button issue in Mountain View since the murder of George Floyd by a Minneapolis police officer in May 2020, prompting widespread protests and demands that the city defund its police department and revamp use of force policies. In response, the City Council launched a committee tasked with improving racial justice and building trust between police and people of color in Mountain View, on which Kamei served as the chair.

"Mayor Kamei has served her community long before she was elected and is committed to tackling many of the toughest issues facing our communities, including homelessness and racial inequity," Khan said in a statement Tuesday. "I am proud to have her support and look forward to working with her as the next Santa Clara County District Attorney."

Although Khan has picked up endorsements from former Congressman Mike Honda and state Assemblyman Alex Lee, Kamei is among a minority of local politicians who have come out in support of Khan so far. Rosen's reelection campaign has received endorsements from dozens of state and local elected officials, including all five members of the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors. Mountain View council members Margaret Abe-Koga and Pat Showalter are also both listed among Rosen's supporters.

Comments

Dave Smith
Registered user
Old Mountain View
on Sep 2, 2021 at 5:28 pm
Dave Smith, Old Mountain View
Registered user
on Sep 2, 2021 at 5:28 pm

Just look how electing a Public Defender has "improved" the lives of residents in San Francisco and Los Angeles (former SF Public Defender and DA)....

Beware of progressives recommending progressive DA's. Regular folks get Screwed!! just ask the SF and Oakland Chinatown attack victims with no prosecution of any of the assailants yet.. When criminals have more freedom and rights then law abiding citizens it is a problem......


ivg
Registered user
Another Mountain View Neighborhood
on Sep 3, 2021 at 8:53 am
ivg, Another Mountain View Neighborhood
Registered user
on Sep 3, 2021 at 8:53 am

Why no quotes from Rosen? I think he would disagree with Khan's description of his approach.


SRB
Registered user
St. Francis Acres
on Sep 4, 2021 at 11:46 am
SRB, St. Francis Acres
Registered user
on Sep 4, 2021 at 11:46 am

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