The Fight For Stockton

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Delta College’s Multimedia, History and Political Science departments were co-sponsors in a series of campus candidate forums Oct. 13-14.

The event, also sponsored by the League of Women Voters of San Joaquin County and the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People – Stockton Branch, featured San Joaquin County Supervisor candidates Moses Zapien and Tom Patti and Congressional candidates Jerry McNerney and Tony Amador the first night.

On Oct. 14 both Mayor Anthony Silva and Councilmember Michael Tubbs were asked questions by the panelist in the last of all the forums.

This round brought in a bigger audience, filling all 200 seats in the South Forum, leaving some people to sit and watch the forum by the entrance. 

Audience member Bettina Engelman felt the forum between the two was civil.

“They focused on issues and had similarities in ideas,” Engleman said.

Rachel Lopez, a Bear Creek High School student, expected a “clash” between Silva and Tubbs, given the comments Silva and Tubbs exchanged on a Facebook post made by Silva on Oct. 5. 

“They are just two very different people,” Lopez said, “But I think the debates went well. Didn’t learn anything new.” 

The candidates said they weren’t given enough time to say what they wanted in the forum, due to their limited time to answer questions.

Silva spoke to the Collegian after the Forum. 

“It was too fast and too rushed,” he said before sharing what he wanted to say during the Forum.

The forum was capped at 30 minutes.

“What I wanted to say is that I proposed a hundred unit homeless complex with $400,000. It would have gotten a hundred people off the streets. I had the city manager take a look at my plan and he denied it, saying it was a waste of time. It’s bullsh*t,” said Silva. “Now, those people won’t have anywhere to go once Caltrans gates off underneath the freeways where all those tents are.” 

Tubb’s was also given a chance by the Collegian to expand on points he wanted to make.

“I wanted to touch more on violent crime,” he said. “We can’t stop these crimes by sending cops after gangs in troubled areas. We need to go be smart and go to these red spots with resources for these people, rather than just cops. A better relationship needs to be built between our cops and citizens.”

Politics can be a dirty game, where allegations are made and controversies follow.

Tubb’s and Silva have their fair share of controversies.

Tubbs was arrested and pleaded no contest to a DUI charge in 2014. A gun stolen from Silva took the life of a minor and there are recent allegations against him for playing strip poker and providing alcohol to minors at a youth camp.

Silva told the Collegian these allegations are false.

“The allegations are completely false and were basically designed just to embarrass me and steal an election just weeks before people vote. I am confident the charges will be proven not true.”

Despite that fact Silva and Tubb’s aren’t currently on the best of terms, Silva had some nice things to say about his opponent.

“I rooted for Tubbs,” he said. “I got sucked into his story. But everyone has a story. Michael Tubbs is good, but not yet. Not today.”