Get SF Weekly Newsletters
Pin It

Democratic Party contest pits bad boy Chris Daly against dark-past-lugging August Longo 

Wednesday, Apr 22 2009

When Supervisor Chris Daly tossed his hat into the ring for the low-profile, unpaid position of Democratic Party regional director last week, much of the ensuing media coverage focused on his history of polarizing behavior. In short, was this man constitutionally capable of handling a job that, essentially, calls for him to bring together various segments of the party and impartially organize meetings in which endorsements are decided?

Little was mentioned of Daly's opponent, six-year incumbent August Longo. Yet, as noted in apparently long-forgotten news stories, Longo was indicted 30 years ago in New York for impersonating three different doctors, filling out false credit-card and loan applications, and passing more than 40 bad checks — to the tune of $467,000. He pleaded guilty to nine counts of grand larceny and was convicted in 1981.

In 1984, Longo absconded from New York and skipped his probation to travel to California (he then didn't clear up his New York probation violation for 18 years). In California, he was convicted of felony credit card fraud in 1985, news reports say. Records indicate Longo was paroled in 1990, but violated it in '91 and went back to prison. He was paroled once more in '92, and began traveling in Democratic Party circles.

Longo said his criminal background was old news, and accused Daly of attempting to plant the story with "every paper in town." This came as a surprise, as Daly had not returned your humble narrator's calls since that one time in 2007.

"I've been vetted," said Longo, who is also a member of San Francisco's Human Rights Commission and a longtime ally of Willie Brown and John Burton. "The fact Chris Daly is trying to bring this up ... I think he can count the votes just like I can."

Our subsequent call to Daly was returned (!) — and he denied spreading stories about Longo's past. "I'm not going to run a negative race," he said. Fair enough — but his friends will. A Tuesday e-mail from San Francisco Democratic Club president Jonathan Wright — a friend and political ally of Daly's and an organizer at the Daly-friendly Service Employees International Union — urged delegates to "avoid voting for a convicted felon who spent 18 years evading justice for identity theft, bad check writing, and worse." Wright told SF Weekly the decision to write this e-mail was his alone, and he kept Daly in the dark.

The winner will be decided Saturday during the state party convention in Sacramento. It remains to be seen how thrilled anyone will be over either outcome.

About The Author

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi

Joe Eskenazi was born in San Francisco, raised in the Bay Area, and attended U.C. Berkeley. He never left. "Your humble narrator" is a staff writer and columnist for SF Weekly, which he has written for since 2007. He resides in the Excelsior with his wife, 4.3 miles from his birthplace and 5,474 from hers... more


Subscribe to this thread:

Add a comment


  • 24th Annual Autumn Moon Festival
    Crowds gathered September 6-7 for the 24th Annual Autumn Moon Festival in Chinatown. Visitors enjoyed arts, crafts, cultural exhibits, food and a dog fashion show. Photographs by Dhoryan Rizo.
  • Felton: Touring the Redwoods
    Blue skies meet redwood canopies in the mountain town of Felton, located just north of Santa Cruz on Highway 9. Once a bustling logging community, the town is now a mix of mellow locals and serene wilderness. Visitors can enjoy the redwoods in nearby Henry Cowell Redwoods State Park and splash in swimming holes in the San Lorenzo River. For a bite to eat stop by Rocky’s Cafe for fruit-laden pancakes, barbeque at the Cowboy Bar & Grill and poolside burgers at the Trout Farm Inn. Other stops worth checking out include Roaring Camp Railroads, the Mount Hermon zip line tour, and the educational Bigfoot Discovery Museum. For beer or cocktails a log cabin bar has you covered.

Popular Stories

  1. Most Popular Stories
  2. Stories You Missed