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Bob Filner

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Title: Bob Filner  
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Subject: California's 51st congressional district, California's 50th congressional district, San Diego mayoral election, 2012, Todd Gloria, Juan Vargas
Collection: 1942 Births, American Politicians Convicted of Crimes, California Democrats, California Politicians Convicted of Crimes, Cornell University Alumni, Democratic Party Members of the United States House of Representatives, Freedom Riders, History Teachers, Jewish American Mayors, Jewish Members of the United States House of Representatives, Living People, Mayors of San Diego, California, Members of the United States House of Representatives from California, People Who Entered an Alford Plea, Political Sex Scandals in the United States, San Diego City Council Members, San Diego State University Faculty, School Board Members in California, State and Local Political Sex Scandals in the United States
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Bob Filner

Bob Filner
Bob Filner, Official Mayoral Portrait
35th Mayor of San Diego
In office
December 3, 2012 – August 30, 2013
Preceded by Jerry Sanders
Succeeded by Todd Gloria (interim)
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 51st district
In office
January 3, 2003 – December 3, 2012
Preceded by Duke Cunningham
Succeeded by Juan Vargas
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 50th district
In office
January 3, 1993 – January 3, 2003
Preceded by District created
Succeeded by Duke Cunningham
Chairman of the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs
In office
January 4, 2007 – January 3, 2011
Preceded by Steve Buyer
Succeeded by Jeff Miller
Member of San Diego City Council representing the Eighth District
In office
December 1987 – January 3, 1993
Preceded by Uvaldo Martinez
Succeeded by Juan Vargas
Personal details
Born Robert Earl Filner
(1942-09-04) September 4, 1942
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
Political party Democratic
Spouse(s) Barbara Christy (divorced)[1]
Jane Merrill (divorced)[2]
Residence San Diego, California
Alma mater Cornell University (BA, PhD)
University of Delaware (MA)
Occupation College professor
Religion Judaism

Robert Earl "Bob" Filner (born September 4, 1942) is an American politician from San Diego, California. He was the 35th Mayor of San Diego, serving from December 2012 until August 2013. Filner resigned less than a year after taking office amid multiple allegations of sexual harassment.[3] He later pleaded guilty to state charges of false imprisonment and battery.

Filner was previously the U.S. Representative for California's 51st congressional district, and the 50th, serving from 1993 to 2012. He was chairman of the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs from 2007 to 2011. He is a member of the Democratic Party.


  • Early life, education, and academic career 1
  • Early political career 2
  • U.S. House of Representatives 3
    • Elections 3.1
    • Tenure 3.2
    • Committee assignments 3.3
  • Mayor of San Diego 4
  • 2013 allegations and resignation 5
    • Allegations of sexual harassment 5.1
    • Other issues 5.2
    • Recall effort 5.3
    • Resignation 5.4
    • Conviction 5.5
  • Personal life 6
  • References 7
  • External links 8

Early life, education, and academic career

Filner was born in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in the Squirrel Hill neighborhood. He is Jewish,[4] the son of Sarah F. and Joseph H. Filner.[5]

He attended Cornell University, where he worked on the Cornell Daily Sun, a student newspaper, and took part in civil rights demonstrations. In June 1961, after pulling into the bus station in Jackson, Mississippi as a Freedom Rider, Filner was arrested for "disturbing the peace and inciting a riot." He refused to post bond for his release and remained incarcerated for two months.[6]

He graduated from Cornell in 1963 with a degree in chemistry, and earned his doctorate in history of science from Cornell six years later. While finishing up his PhD, he moved to San Diego, becoming a history professor at San Diego State University for more than 20 years.[7]

Early political career

Filner was long interested in politics. He worked for U.S. Senator Hubert Humphrey of Minnesota in 1975 and for Minnesota Congressman Don Fraser in 1976. He also worked for Congressman Jim Bates from the San Diego area in 1984.[8]

His elective career began in 1979, when his opposition to the closing of a neighborhood school led him to run for the San Diego Unified School District Board of Education, defeating a longtime incumbent. His "back to basics" approach to education won him wide praise, and his colleagues elected him president of the board in 1982.[9] He was replaced on the board by Susan Davis, who now represents most of the rest of San Diego in the House of Representatives. He was elected to the San Diego City Council in 1987 and was reelected in 1991; his colleagues elected him Deputy Mayor of San Diego.[8]

U.S. House of Representatives

Bob Filner with the 2009 Little League World Series champions meeting Barack Obama


California gained seven seats after the 1990 census, and one of them was the 50th District in south San Diego (renumbered the 51st District after the 2000 census). The district is one of the most ethnically diverse in the nation, including much of San Diego's southern section, the cities of Chula Vista and National City and all of Imperial County. It includes most of California's border with Mexico, except for the city of Imperial Beach. In 1992, Filner ran in a five-way Democratic primary for the seat and won a narrow victory. One of his primary opponents was his former boss, Jim Bates, who had lost his seat in a sexual harassment scandal in 1990[10] and whose home had been drawn into the district. Another opponent was veteran state Senator Wadie Deddeh, who was term-limited. Filner defeated Deddeh by a narrow margin, with Bates finishing third place in the primary. The district was almost 40% Hispanic (redistricting in 2000 made it 53% Hispanic) and heavily Democratic, and his victory in November (with 57 percent of the vote) was a foregone conclusion.[11] He was reelected nine times with no substantive Republican opposition. He ran unopposed in 1998. He chose not to run for re-election to Congress in 2012, opting instead to run for Mayor of San Diego. He resigned from the House of Representatives on December 3, 2012, in order to take office as Mayor of San Diego.[12]

Filner had a bitter rivalry with Juan Vargas, another Democratic politician who ran against Filner in the Democratic primary three times.[13] Filner and Vargas have accused each other of corruption. However, in the 2012 mayoral race, Vargas endorsed Filner for Mayor of San Diego and Vargas was elected to Filner's seat in Congress.[14][15]


Filner was a founding member of the Congressional Progressive Caucus.[16] He was also a member of the Congressional Motorcycle Safety Caucus and International Conservation Caucus. He was one of the 31 who voted in the House to not count the electoral votes from Ohio in the 2004 presidential election.[17][18] In 2008, Filner sponsored a resolution, passed by the House of Representatives, in support of National Aviation Maintenance Technician Day.[19] While in congress, Filner was known for his combative personality, and for personally dealing with constituent issues.[20]

Veterans issues

Filner served on the House Committee on Veterans' Affairs and ascended to the chairmanship when the Democrats took over the House of representatives after the 2006 election. As chairman, Filner advocated for funding for veterans benefits, increased spending on veterans healthcare, and a new GI bill for veterans of Afghanistan and Iraq. Filner stayed on as ranking Democrat on the committee after the Republicans retook the House in the 2010 election.[21]

Filipino issues

Filner's district in south San Diego had one of the largest populations of Filipino Americans in the country, leading Filner to focus on issues relevant to the Philippines while in congress, especially Filipino veterans. Filner's accomplishments included legislation allowing Filipino veterans to maintain a small stipend from the government if they moved back to the Philippines, burial benefits, and access to VA clinics. In 2009 Filner brokered a deal securing $198 million in pension benefits for Filipino veterans who had served for the United States in World War II in the form of a $15,000 lump sum payment as part of the 2009 stimulus bill.[21] In February 2009, Rep. Antonio Diaz filed a bill in the Philippine House of Representatives seeking to confer honorary Filipino citizenship on Filner and U.S. Senators Daniel Inouye, Daniel Akaka, and Ted Stevens for their role in securing the passage of this legislation.[22]

Airline worker controversy

On August 20, 2007, Filner was involved in an altercation with a United Airlines employee at Dulles International Airport after he became upset that his baggage had not yet arrived on a baggage carousel. Filner entered the baggage claim office and became irritated when the employee was busy helping another customer and asked the congressman to wait his turn. It was at this point that it is alleged that Filner attempted to enter the employee-only area of the office. He was asked to leave the area several times by airline employees but refused to do so until airport police were called in.[23]

Filner was on his way to visit troops in Iraq at the time of the incident. He released a statement saying "suffice it to say now, that the story that has appeared in the press is factually incorrect and the charges are ridiculous".[23] He was later charged with assault and battery.[24] Filner entered an Alford plea after prosecutors reduced the charge to trespassing.[25] The House Ethics Committee began a probe into the event,[26] but it was later dropped.[27]

People's Mujahedin of Iran

Filner, along with several, senior United States officials, argued that the

United States House of Representatives
Preceded by
District Created
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 50th congressional district

Succeeded by
Randy "Duke" Cunningham
Preceded by
Randy "Duke" Cunningham
Member of the U.S. House of Representatives
from California's 51st congressional district

Succeeded by
Juan Vargas
Political offices
Preceded by
Steve Buyer
Chairman of House Veterans' Affairs Committee
Succeeded by
Jeff Miller
Preceded by
Jerry Sanders
Mayor of San Diego, California
Succeeded by
Todd Gloria (interim)

External links

  1. ^ Rowe, Peter (31 January 2011). "For ‘nice’ San Diegan, mediation is the key". U-T San Diego. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  2. ^ Rother, Caitlin (4 December 2005). "Lawmaker keeps wife on payroll". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  3. ^ a b Condon, Stephanie (August 23, 2013). "Bob Filner agrees to resign". CBS News. Retrieved August 23, 2013. 
  4. ^ Poor, Jeff (January 13, 2011). "Giffords shooting ‘the start of the revolution’". The Daily Caller. Retrieved 30 July 2013. 
  5. ^ "Jewish Politicians in California". Political Graveyard. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  6. ^ Rosenberg, Paul. "Congressmember Bob Filner: Confronting racist Tea Party violence on election night". Open Left. Retrieved 7 January 2013. 
  7. ^ Filner, Bob (1973). Science and Politics in England, 1930-1945: The Social Relations of Science Movement (PDF) (Ph.D.). Cornell University. 
  8. ^ a b "Bob Filner". U.S. Congress Votes Database (Washington Post). Retrieved 9 December 2012. 
  9. ^ Gustafson, Craig (April 14, 2012). "School board snub fired Filner up for politics". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 29 December 2012. 
  10. ^ Horstman, Barry M. (September 28, 1991). "Apologetic Bates Plans Comeback". Los Angeles Times. 
  11. ^ "Rep. Bob Filner (D)". National Journal Almanac. National Journal. Retrieved 9 December 2012. 
  12. ^ Joseph, Cameron (3 December 2012). "Rep. Filner resigns from Congress". The Hill. Retrieved 7 January 2013. 
  13. ^ "Rep. Filner beats Democratic rival in latest rematch". San Diego Union-Tribune. 7 June 2006. Retrieved 7 January 2013. 
  14. ^ Dillon, Liam (30 July 2012). "The Politics of Bob Filner’s Personality". Voice of San Diego. Retrieved 7 January 2013. 
  15. ^ "U.S. House of Representatives District 51 - Districtwide Results". California Secretary of State. Retrieved 7 November 2012. 
  16. ^ "Bob Filner on the Issues". On the Issues. Retrieved 9 December 2012. 
  17. ^ "Bush carries Electoral College after delay". CNN. January 6, 2005. Retrieved 29 December 2012. 
  18. ^ "Final Vote Results for Roll Call 7: On Agreeing to the Objection". U.S. House of Representatives. 6 January 2005. Retrieved 24 December 2012. 
  19. ^ "AMT Day Passes House!". Retrieved 9 December 2012. 
  20. ^ Dillon, Liam (24 December 2012). "Filner, Bob: The Definitive Entry on San Diego's New Mayor". Voice of San Diego. Retrieved 7 January 2013. 
  21. ^ a b Dillon, Liam (4 September 2012). "What Bob Filner Did In Washington D.C.". Voice of San Diego. Retrieved 24 December 2012. 
  22. ^ Leila Salaverria (24 February 2009). "4 US solons as honorary Filipinos".  
  23. ^ a b Molly Hooper (20 August 2007). "Rep. Bob Filner Charged With Assault on Virginia Airport Worker". Fox News. Retrieved 5 May 2011. 
  24. ^ "Congressman Bob Filner Served Court Summons on Assault Charge". Fox News. 4 September 2007. Retrieved 5 May 2011. 
  25. ^ Dana Wilkie (29 November 2007). "Va. airline employee rips Filner apology". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 5 May 2011. 
  26. ^ Paul Kane (19 September 2007). "House Ethics Committee Opens Probe into Filner's Airport Altercation". The Washington Post. Retrieved 5 May 2011. 
  27. ^ Patrick O'Conner (21 December 2007). "House ethics gives Filner mild rebuke". Politico. Retrieved 5 May 2011. 
  28. ^ McGreal, Chris (28 September 2012). "MEK supporters push for recognition by US as official Iranian opposition". UK Guardian (London). Retrieved 9 December 2012. 
  29. ^ Matt Potter (27 July 2011). "Filner's Road to Paris". San Diego Reader. Retrieved 5 Dec 2011. 
  30. ^ 77 FR -FR-60741 60741
  31. ^ "Filner in it to win it". KUSI News. 9 June 2011. Retrieved 21 December 2012. 
  32. ^ "Official primary election results". San Diego County Registrar of Voters. June 5, 2012. Retrieved 13 July 2012. 
  33. ^ "Presidential General Election, Tuesday, November 6, 2012". San Diego County Registrar of Voters. Retrieved 5 December 2012. 
  34. ^ Spagat, Elliot (7 November 2012). "Filner claims victory as next San Diego mayor". Silicon Valley Mercury News. Retrieved 24 December 2012. 
  35. ^ "Unofficial Election Results Show Filner Ahead of DeMaio in Mayoral Race". San Diego 6: The CW. November 6, 2012. Retrieved 7 November 2012. 
  36. ^ Halverstadt, Lisa (3 December 2012). "Where Candidate Filner Wavered, Mayor Filner Delivers". Voice of San Diego. Retrieved 7 January 2013. 
  37. ^ Craig Gustafson (10 January 2013). "Filner halts medpot crackdown: Federal crackdown not affected by mayor's action". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 12 January 2013. 
  38. ^ Tony Perry (13 January 2013). "San Diego halts all actions against marijuana dispensaries". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 15 January 2013. 
  39. ^ Riffel, James R. (23 April 2013). "Filner ‘Disappointed’ With City Council’s Medical Marijuana Decision". KPBS - City News Service. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  40. ^ Lewis, Scott (23 April 2013). "San Diego’s Marijuana Confusion Hits a New High". Voice of San Diego. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  41. ^ Weisberg, Lori (31 January 2013). "Tourism marketing funds still in limbo". U-T San Diego. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  42. ^ Gustafson, Craig (20 February 2013). "Mayor vs. city attorney, Round 2". U-T San Diego. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  43. ^ "Mayor Bob Filner Wins Court Battle Over Tourism Marketing".  
  44. ^ Perry, Tony (2 June 2013). "A liberal mayor takes on the San Diego establishment". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  45. ^ Cubbison, Gene (1 June 2013). "Mayor, TMD Cease Fire In Tourism Funding Spat". NBC 7 San Diego. Retrieved 2 June 2013. 
  46. ^ "Filner: ‘A Fair, Independent Investigation Will Support My Innocence’". KPBS News. July 12, 2013. Retrieved 14 July 2013. 
  47. ^ Filner apologizes, gets professional help, San Diego Union Tribune, July 11, 2013
  48. ^ a b Perry, Tony (July 12, 2013). "San Diego politicians, journalists abuzz over Mayor Filner's troubles". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 14 July 2013. 
  49. ^ Spagat, Elliott (July 24, 2013). "3rd woman says San Diego mayor made sexual advance". Associated Press, cited by San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 25 July 2013. 
  50. ^ Dirks, Sandhya (July 16, 2013). "Filner Defiant as Details of Alleged Sexual Harassment Emerge". KPBS-FM. Retrieved 16 July 2013. 
  51. ^ Elliott, Rebecca (July 22, 2013). "Gloria Allred filing harassment lawsuit vs. Bob Filner". Politico. Retrieved 22 July 2013. 
  52. ^ a b Seibert, Trent (August 26, 2013). "Parks worker files claim against Filner". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 27 August 2013. 
  53. ^
  54. ^ "Filner sex harassment: Marilyn Monroe lookalike is 9th accuser," Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 7 August 2013
  55. ^ Elliott, Rebecca (August 15, 2013). "Great-grandmother accuses Bob Filner". Politico. Retrieved 16 August 2013. 
  56. ^ "Filner demanded a date in exchange for helping an injured vet, says nurse," MSNBC. Retrieved 7 August 2013.
  57. ^ "‘When I got to nine, I stopped asking’: Filner and the pattern of preying on rape victims," MSNBC. Retrieved 7 August 2013.
  58. ^ "Wasserman Schultz calls on San Diego mayor to resign". The Hill. Retrieved 26 July 2013. 
  59. ^ Walker, Mark (July 15, 2013). "County Dems to discuss Filner Thursday". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 16 July 2013. 
  60. ^ Daily News (New York) 
  61. ^ "Chief of Staff Lee Burdick says Mayor Bob Filner entered therapy a week early, completed program". ABC 10 News. August 9, 2013. Retrieved 9 August 2013. 
  62. ^ "'"Mayor Bob Filner taking time off for 'intensive therapy. News 10. Retrieved 26 July 2013. 
  63. ^ Perry, Tony (26 July 2013). "San Diego Mayor Bob Filner goes into therapy". LA Times. Retrieved 26 July 2013. 
  64. ^ Graham, Marty (August 10, 2013). "San Diego mayor's two-week sexual harassment therapy ends early". Reuters. Retrieved 10 August 2013. 
  65. ^ "San Diego Mayor Bob Filner Asks City to Pay for Legal Fees Source:". NBC News. Retrieved 30 July 2013. 
  66. ^ San Diego council votes to sue Mayor Bob Filner, USA Today, Retrieved 30 July 2013.
  67. ^ a b Medina, Jennifer (August 23, 2013). "San Diego Mayor Resigns in Sexual Harassment Scandal". NY Times. Retrieved 23 August 2013. 
  68. ^ Seibert, Trent (August 10, 2013). "Bodyguards: Filner took women to hotel". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 12 August 2013. 
  69. ^ Perry, Tony (July 26, 2013). "San Diego Mayor Bob Filner's June trip to Paris questioned". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 12 August 2013. 
  70. ^ Blacher, Mitch (August 17, 2013). "Bob Filner's Paris finances show last-minute airfare, unattended conferences cost thousands". ABC 10 News. Retrieved 17 August 2013. 
  71. ^ McDonald, Jeff (July 30, 2013). "FBI expands probe of developer deals". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 12 August 2013. 
  72. ^ Chen, Michael. "Filner recall effort organizers join forces". ABC 10 News (August 2, 2013). Retrieved 13 August 2013. 
  73. ^ De La Rosa, Christian (August 8, 2013). "Critics: Filner recall is virtually impossible". Fox 5 San Diego. Retrieved 13 August 2013. 
  74. ^ Garske, Monica (August 24, 2013). "Recall Effort Winds Down in Wake of Filner’s Resignation Source:". NBC San Diego. Retrieved 27 August 2013. 
  75. ^ Wian, Casey (August 21, 2013). "San Diego Mayor Bob Filner, city reach mediation deal, city attorney says". CNN. Retrieved 22 August 2013. 
  76. ^ "San Diego Mayor Bob Filner Resigns From Office". Mediaite. Retrieved 23 August 2013. 
  77. ^ Dotinga, Randy (August 22, 2013). "The Differences Between an Interim Mayor and a Strong Mayor". Voice of San Diego. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  78. ^ "Special election to replace Filner set for November 19". KFMB-TV. August 28, 2013. Retrieved 30 August 2013. 
  79. ^ a b Davis, Rob; Nagourney, Adam (October 15, 2013). "Bob Filner, Former San Diego Mayor, Pleads Guilty to Criminal Charges". New York Times. Retrieved 15 October 2013. 
  80. ^ "Former San Diego Mayor Bob Filner pleads guilty to felony false imprisonment, battery". ABC 10 News. October 15, 2013. Retrieved 15 October 2013. 
  81. ^ Levs, Josh; Simpson, David (December 9, 2013). "Ex-San Diego mayor sentenced to home confinement for assaulting women". CNN Justice. Retrieved 10 December 2013. 
  82. ^ Gustafson, Craig; Moran, Greg (December 10, 2013). "Filner's final fall". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 11 December 2013. 
  83. ^ Alman, Ashley (April 6, 2014). "Bob Filner's Three-Month House Arrest Comes To An End". AP (Huffington Post). Retrieved 10 April 2014. 
  84. ^ Rowe, Peter (January 31, 2011). "For ‘nice’ San Diegan, mediation is the key". San Diego Union Tribune. Retrieved 13 February 2013. 
  85. ^ "Bob Filner Fiancee Bronwyn Ingram". NBC San Diego. November 20, 2012. Retrieved 17 November 2012. 
  86. ^ Filner's fiancee calls off engagement, San Diego Union Tribune, July 8, 2013
  87. ^ "Mayor Bob Filner's ex-fiancee releases statement on what ended relationship," ABC 10News. Retrieved 30 July 2013.


At his first news conference after his election as mayor in 2012, Filner introduced his fiancee, Bronwyn Ingram, a disability analyst who works for the Social Security Administration.[85] On July 8, 2013, Ingram announced by email to a group of her supporters that the engagement had been called off and the relationship was over.[86] In a subsequent statement, Ingram cited Filner's verbal abuse and blatant sexting as reasons for the split.[87]

Filner was later married to Jane Merrill, but they divorced in 2011.

Filner is divorced from his first wife, Barbara (Christy) Filner, a retired mediation specialist;[84] they have two adult children, a son and a daughter.

Personal life

On October 15, 2013, Filner pleaded guilty in San Diego Superior Court to three criminal counts filed against him by the California state attorney general, who took over the case after the San Diego County district attorney recused herself.[79] The charges were one felony count of false imprisonment and two misdemeanor battery charges. The victims were identified as three Jane Does. He could have faced up to five years in prison,[80] but a plea bargain was reportedly reached, under which he would be given three months of house arrest, three years probation, and partial loss of his mayoral pension.[79] On December 9, 2013, the terms of the plea bargain were imposed at a sentencing hearing.[81] The plea bargain would have prohibited him from ever seeking or holding public office again, but the judge reduced the prohibition so it applies only while he is on probation.[82] He served a three-month term of house arrest which ended on April 6, 2014.[83]


On August 21, 2013, city attorney Jan Goldsmith said that Filner had reached an agreement with the city after three days of mediation.[75] The City Council considered the agreement in a closed session on August 23 and voted 7-0 to accept Filner's resignation.[3] The resignation deal with the City Council limits Filner's "legal and financial exposure"[67] by providing a joint legal defense for him and the city for claims filed against him by current or former city employees, as well as paying up to $98,000 of his outside legal fees.[52] Filner signed a letter of resignation that became effective at 5 p.m PDT August 30, 2013.[76] City Council president Todd Gloria served as interim mayor, with limited powers, pending election of a new mayor.[77] A special election was held on November 19, 2013;[78] since no candidate received a majority of the vote, a runoff election was held on February 11, 2014, wherein Kevin Faulconer was elected to be the next mayor.


In August 2013 two different groups started the process to mount a recall drive against Filner; the two groups later combined their efforts.[72] In order to force a recall election, they would have had to gather more than 100,000 signatures of city voters (15% of the votes cast in the most recent election) within a 39-day window.[73] On August 18, 1,200 volunteers began collecting signatures. Less than a week after the signature drive began, Filner agreed to resign. The recall organizers wound down the effort, called for all petitions to be turned in so they could be counted and destroyed, and worked on preparing a final financial accounting.[74]

Recall effort

Federal, state and local investigators have been looking into several other issues involving Filner.[68] One matter involves a trip he took to Paris with his then-fiancée in June 2013; questions have been raised about the nonprofit group that paid his expenses and the use of city credit cards to pay for his accompanying security detail.[69][70] On another issue, FBI agents have been looking into a pair of proposed housing developments which Filner blocked with an "administrative hold" until the developers contributed money to certain city projects.[71]

Other issues

On July 29, 2013, Filner asked the city of San Diego to pay his legal fees for a sexual harassment lawsuit regarding his former communications director. The city council voted not to do so,[65] and in fact to sue Filner for any costs incurred by the city due to claims filed against him and the city.[66] The City Council later reversed itself as part of a negotiated agreement with Filner.[67]

On July 26, 2013, Filner announced that he planned to take a leave of absence "to undergo two weeks of intensive therapy” starting August 5.[62][63] He started the treatment but ended it early on August 10, according to his attorney.[64]

In the ensuing weeks, calls for Filner's resignation came from Democratic U.S. senators Dianne Feinstein and Barbara Boxer, representatives Susan Davis and Scott Peters, DNC chairwoman and U.S Representative Debbie Wasserman Schultz,[58] California State Assembly members Toni Atkins and Lorena Gonzalez,[59] Nancy Pelosi,[60] and all nine members of the City Council.[61]

On July 22, 2013, attorney Gloria Allred announced at a press conference that her firm had filed a sexual harassment lawsuit against Filner on behalf of the mayor's former communications director.[51] By August 26, 19 women[52] had publicly claimed that Filner had sexually harassed them, including a retired admiral,[53] a Marilyn Monroe impersonator who appeared at one of his fundraisers,[54] a 67-year-old great-grandmother who worked for the city,[55] a nurse who said Filner demanded a date in exchange for helping a Marine who had suffered a brain injury and PTSD during service in Iraq,[56] and several female members of the U.S. armed forces who had been raped during their service.[57] In the last two instances, Filner's contact with the women stemmed from his position at the time as ranking member of the House Veterans' Affairs Committee.

On July 15 the same three former supporters held another press conference, describing in more detail charges by women who said they had been forcibly kissed, groped, and subjected to sexually suggestive comments by Filner; the alleged but unidentified victims include a mayoral staffer, a campaign volunteer and a constituent.[50] Filner repeated that he had done nothing wrong and would not resign.

On July 12 Filner's chief of staff, Vince Hall, announced his resignation, effective immediately.[48] On July 24 Filner's new chief of staff Tony Buckles, his former congressional chief of staff, resigned after only 10 days on the job and was replaced by Lee Burdick, a woman who had been serving as deputy chief of staff.[49]

On July 11, 2013, three of Filner's long-time supporters held a press conference to call for Filner's resignation as mayor, based on numerous unspecified but "credible" allegations that he had sexually harassed women. KPBS-FM said that it had been investigating reports of sexual harassment of female staff members for several months, and that the complaints included "inappropriate comments, kissing and groping".[46] Later that day Filner issued a video statement apologizing and saying that he was seeking professional help to change his behavior.[47] The next day Filner told reporters that he had treated women poorly and sometimes intimidated them, but insisted that a "fair and independent investigation" would clear him of sexual harassment charges.[48]

Allegations of sexual harassment

2013 allegations and resignation

In February 2013, Filner raised controversy by not authorizing funding of the Tourism Marketing District, a hotelier-run organization charged with promoting San Diego as a tourist destination that is funded by a 2 percent surcharge on hotel rooms. In 2012, the San Diego City Council agreed to renew the District for 39 1/2 years, but outgoing mayor Jerry Sanders did not sign the agreement before leaving office.[41] Filner publicly withheld his signature on the agreement, wanting a series of concessions that would raise hotel worker salaries, protect the City from liability, and direct more of the funds collected to be used by the City of San Diego. The District subsequently filed suit against the Mayor to enforce the agreement, but Judge Timothy Taylor ruled that Filner had the discretion not to sign.[42][43] After this ruling, Filner and the hoteliers agreed to a compromise and Filner signed the contract. However, in late May 2013 Filner temporarily withheld payments to the District until it agreed to provide upfront funding for a centennial celebration for Balboa Park.[44][45]

In January 2013, following a meeting between Filner and the San Diego chapter of Americans for Safe Access, Filner instructed the San Diego Police Department and city code compliance officers to stop enforcing codes against marijuana dispensaries and stop forwarding cases to the San Diego City Attorney's Office.[37][38] In April 2013, Filner proposed a new ordinance to restore permanent legal status to dispensaries, but the City Council rejected it and suggested that the City Attorney draft a new ordinance in its place.[39] Meanwhile, federal agencies continued to raid and prosecute dispensaries within city limits.[40]

Filner announced on June 8, 2011, that he would be a candidate for Mayor of San Diego in the 2012 election[31] and would not run for re-election to Congress. In the primary on June 5, 2012, he placed second with 30.74% of the vote.[32] He faced city councilmember Carl DeMaio in the November 2012 runoff election. Filner defeated DeMaio, 52.5% to 47.5%.[33] Filner, age 70, won as San Diego's first Democratic mayor since 1992 and only its second since 1971.[34][35] In his first speech as mayor, Filner promised to focus on rebuilding the neighborhoods of San Diego, improving city services, increasing staffing for public safety, bringing jobs to the city, and developing stronger regional ties with Tijuana.[36]

Bob Filner Press Conference About Veterans

Mayor of San Diego

Committee assignments


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