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Philip Nicholas "Phil" Angelides (play /ˌændʒɨˈliːdɨs/ an-jə-lee-dees; born June 12, 1953 in Sacramento, California) is an American politician who was California State Treasurer and the unsuccessful Democratic nominee for Governor of California in the 2006 elections. Angelides currently serves as the Chair of the Apollo Alliance and of the Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission.


Personal

Phil Angelides was born to Helen and Jerry Angelides, the son of Greek immigrants in Sacramento, California. Growing up, Phil and his brother Kimon were encouraged by their father to learn about geography and the United States government. Their father would quiz them weekly on these topics.

Angelides was educated at The Thacher School in Ojai, California and graduated from Harvard University in 1974, majoring in government as a Coro Foundation Fellow.[1]

Angelides and his wife, Julie, reside in Sacramento with their three daughters - Megan, Christina, and Arianna.[2] His eldest daughter, Megan Garcia-Angelides, was the campus coordinator for his 2006 campaign.[3]

Early political career

Angelides' passion for politics traces back to 1971, during his college freshman year, when he met anti-war activist Allard Lowenstein.[4] In 1973, while still in college, Angelides unsuccessfully ran for Sacramento City Council against a popular incumbent. He again ran unsuccessfully for City Council in 1977 - these races, however, fostered relationships with political and business mentors that led to later opportunities. He was an early supporter and fundraiser of the eventual 1988 Democratic Presidential Nominee, Michael Dukakis, and maintains a strong friendship with him to this present day. Mike Dukakis has referred to Phil as "one of the five or 10 best people in American politics today."[5] His work with Dukakis led him to serve as the chairman of the California Democratic Party from 1991 to 1993. His efforts not only helped Bill Clinton to become the first Democrat to carry California in 28 years, but also contributed to California becoming the first state to elect two female senators in the same election, Democrats Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein. His efforts have been beneficial for the California Democratic Party, because since 1992, California has consistently been a Democratic-leaning state in each subsequent Presidential election, and both Senate seats have remained Democratic.

After losing in the general election on his first attempt as State Treasurer in 1994, he was elected to this post in 1998 as a Democrat and re-elected in 2002. Also, before his election as Treasurer, he served as Co-Chair of the Sacramento Mayor’s Commission on Education and the City’s Future from 1995 to 1996. Angelides worked for a number of years for the state of California's Housing and Community Development agency (from 1975 to 1983).

California State Treasurer

As Treasurer, Angelides was an ex-officio member of the boards of the California Public Employees' Retirement System (CalPERS) and the California State Teachers’ Retirement System (CalSTRS),[6] which are the nation’s first and third largest public pension funds. He had been a leader in the corporate reform movement[7] and had advocated for investment in socially and environmentally conscious businesses and for businesses with increased standards of financial disclosure.[8][9] For example, in April 2006 CalSTRS board members unanimously supported Angelides’ motion to divest from Sudan to pressure an end to the government backed Genocide in Sudan.[10] His Green Wave Initiative invested $950,000,000 into environmental businesses and technologies[11] and his Double Bottom Line Initiative invested 14 billion dollars into inner-city and underserved communities.[12] In 2003, the CalPERS investment committee approved of Angelides' Investment Protection Standards, which require that investment banking firms who do business with CalPERS separate their research and investment banking practices.[13] New York State Attorney General Eliot Spitzer complimented Angelides' plan saying, "I applaud Treasurer Angelides for his actions. Today’s announcement is an important first step in ensuring that these reforms become the new market standard."[14] Angelides, along with 10 other state treasurers and controllers, has also called on the SEC to approve a rule giving shareholders the right to nominate candidates for corporate boards of directors.[15]

2006 Gubernatorial campaign
Main article: California gubernatorial election, 2006
From left: Antonio Villaraigosa, Angelides, John Kerry, Cruz Bustamante and Fabian Núñez at a rally for Angelides' gubernatorial campaign

In early 2005, he announced his intention to run against the current Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2006, having made little secret of his ambition for the Governor's Office from the time that Schwarzenegger was elected in 2003.[16] On April 29, 2006, Angelides was endorsed by the California Democratic Party at the California State Democratic Convention in Sacramento. Despite this, polls from around that time showed that his opponent in the race, California State Controller Steve Westly, had an advantage in the primary. Angelides' campaign built momentum since the California State Democratic Convention, winning the endorsements of the Sacramento Bee[17] and the Los Angeles Times,[18] two of California's largest newspapers, and the California League of Conservation Voters,[19] after a head-to-head debate with Westly. He also received the endorsement of the liberal San Francisco Bay Guardian.[20] A Field Poll held on June 2, 2006 had Westly leading Angelides by one percentage point, 35% to 34% with 26% undecided.[21]

Angelides was also endorsed by Former Vice President Al Gore [1], New York Attorney General Eliot Spitzer, Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein, Former Massachusetts Governor and 1988 Democratic Presidential nominee Michael Dukakis, United States Senator from Massachusetts and 2004 Democratic Presidential nominee John Kerry, Assembly Speaker Fabian Núñez, California Lieutenant Governor Cruz Bustamante, Mayor of Los Angeles Antonio Villaraigosa, Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi, the California Labor Federation, the California Teachers' Association, the California Professional Firefighters, the California Sierra Club, California League of Conservation Voters, California NOW, Vote the Coast and Clean Water Action. Following his primary defeat on June 6, California State Controller Steve Westly endorsed the victorious Angelides as did Assemblyman Mark Leno and San Francisco Supervisor Fiona Ma.[22]

For a time, Angelides used California Democratic Party political operative Bob Mulholland.

On July 7, 2006, Angelides expressed his support for gay rights, and pledged to legalize same-sex marriage if elected governor, stating "I would sign the marriage equality bill because I believe if we can get behind people to build a lasting relationship, that is a good thing."[23]

Angelides has also called for reducing tax breaks for corporations and individuals earning $500,000 or more per year, in a plan to earn revenue to increase funding for public K-12 education and higher education. The plan would halt and repeal increases made in the tuition fees of the University of California system, and the California Community College system.[24] He has stated his opposition to sending National Guard troops to the California-Mexico border and wants to seek closer ties with the then-President of Mexico, Vicente Fox, claiming that it will help both the economies of California and Mexico.[25]

On May 22, 2006 in Santa Monica, Angelides announced his support for Vinod Khosla's Clean Alternative Energy Initiative (prop. 87) which, if enacted, would assess oil company profits by $4,000,000,000 over the next ten years and use the proceeds to invest into research for alternative energy such as ethanol. The measure makes it illegal for oil producers to pass the cost onto consumers.[26] It also would reduce California's oil dependency by 25% over the next ten years, and would increase the use of renewable energy sources such as wind and solar power.

On May 23, 2006 Angelides wrote Barbara Boxer, a member of the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation, urging her to support net neutrality.[27]

Angelides has also endorsed the Clean Money Initiative (Prop. 89). The initiative would provide public finances to candidates who can obtain at least 750 $5.00 contributions from voters and who have participated in at least one primary and two general election debates.[28] It would also place new restrictions on contributions and expenditures by lobbyists and corporations.[29]

Throughout the campaign, Westly and Angelides were both accused of engaging in negative campaigning. Angelides presented himself as a more progressive and liberal candidate, and accused Westly of working too closely with Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger, whom Angelides would eventually face in the November elections. Westly accused Angelides of being an anti-environment real estate developer. Westly's ads in that matter were later criticized by the executive directors of Vote the Coast, Sierra Club, California League of Conservation Voters, and California Coastal Protection Network in a letter saying "All of the environmental organizations who do endorsements believe Phil has the vision to be the greenest governor California has ever had. Don't let Steve Westly's attacks prevail over the environmental movement's best judgement in this election." Garry South, Westly's campaign manager, who also presided over Gray Davis' rather negative campaigns in 1998 and 2002, was also criticized over using such tactics, with the environmental groups chiding him for using "false accusations."

On June 6, 2006, Angelides won the Democratic primary over Westly with 48 percent of the vote over his opponent's 43 percent.[30]

Angelides' Republican opponent, Arnold Schwarzenegger, has since used quotes from Westly's campaign to attack Angelides. Westly, who endorsed Angelides after the primary, countered, "Governor Schwarzenegger has shown great interest in what Steve Westly has to say about the governor’s race in 2006. He’s right to say that and I’m here to tell you we all need to vote for the Democratic candidate, Phil Angelides for Governor in November 2006."[31]

On August 16, Angelides announced his plans to cut taxes by $1.4 billion for California's middle class and small businesses.[32]

With signs waving and chants of "Go Phil Go," Angelides said he expected a surge of support in the final days of the United States House elections on November 7, 2006. Fighting growing apathy among Democrats, Angelides drew cheers when he promised he would not give up during a rally held before a sprawling crowd on the campus of the University of Southern California on October 27, 2006.[33]

Internet campaigning and outreach efforts towards youth

An unauthorized MySpace web page [2] for gubernatorial candidate Phil Angelides was embraced by the candidate’s campaign. During the Democratic primary, both Angelides and primary opponent Steve Westly used MySpace to rally supporters and spread their messages to potential voters. Amongst gubernatorial campaigns, this is notable as a candidate's embrace of current technology and social networking to spread their message and reach out to the growing group of politically-conscious teenagers as well as net-savvy voters.

While incumbent Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger is well-known amongst young voters primarily due to his popular films, a centerpoint of Angelides' gubernatorial campaign had been his outreach efforts to youth and students, which include the use of MySpace and other Internet venues, touring schools across California, encouraging young people to vote and take part in the political process, and promoting his plans to strengthen education and expand college opportunities for Californians.

In 1999 Angelides launched the ScholarShare college savings trust, described by the Los Angeles Times as one of "the nation's best," (a subsection of the scholarship portion of the ScholarShare program was discontinued due to lack of funds after only a year) and sponsored a $25 billion bond to relieve overcrowding and repair damaged schools. He stated his intent to increase high school funding by $200,000,000 to hire more counselors in high schools and middle schools as well as increasing admission quotas for the UC and CSU systems by 20,000 students. He has stated that he would "seriously consider" lowering the minimal voting age from 18 to 16 if elected governor. At 8:01 PM, just one minute after polling in California was closed, Arnold Schwarzenegger was declared by many news organizations as the victor.[34][35][36]

Alleged campaign involvement in Schwarzenegger remark controversy

On September 7, 2006, it was revealed that Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger referred to Latino Republican Assemblymember Bonnie Garcia as being fiery and hot-tempered because "black blood" mixed with "Latino blood" equals "hot." He further stated "I mean, they [Cubans and Puerto Ricans] are all very hot...they have the, you know, part of the black blood in them and part of the Latino blood in them and together that makes it."

It was a front-page story on the Los Angeles Times and was revealed by reporter Robert Salladay. Schwarzenegger then apologized for the remarks the next day, in a joint press conference with Garcia in Santa Monica, California.[3]

A few days later, the Schwarzenegger campaign claimed that it was the victim of a breach of security protocols, and Andrea Lynn Hoch, Schwarzenegger's legal affairs secretary stated that the file was stored "in a password-protected area of the governor's office network computer system." The California Highway Patrol was asked to investigate.

On September 13, it was discovered that the recording was obtained by members of the Angelides campaign on August 29 and August 30 stored in an MP3 file and that campaign researcher Sean Sullivan and press spokesman Dan Newman submitted it to the Los Angeles Times. Katie Levinson, a spokeswoman for the Schwarzenegger campaign wanted Angelides to "denounce the unethical actions taken on his behalf," stating that he was trying to personally smear Schwarzenegger. [4]

In response to the claims from Schwarzenegger's camp, Angelides campaign manager Cathy Calfo dismissed the claims as being politically motivated and "completely false." In regards to the recording she stated: "What I have been told is, there was information accessed by one of our computers off of a taxpayer-funded, publicly available Web site that any member of the public would have access to..." [5] She also expressed regret that Sullivan and Newman submitted the tape without consulting with other members of the campaign. [6]

According to The Inquirer, the supposed URL where the recording was taken from is http://speeches.gov.ca.gov/dir/06-21.htm (now offline) [7]

Apparently, as of September 13, 2006, a cached version of the site can be found on Google, suggesting that the site was available to the public at the time and that it was indexed on Google's servers. [8]

Roger Salazar, a California Democratic Party spokesman also was quoted as saying - "They want to put it off onto some massive conspiracy theory... The governor's office is trying to play up the nefarious angle to deflect attention from their own incompetence — accidentally posting the recording on its own Web site. And from the recordings themselves." [37]

In early 2007, the CHP issued a report clearing the Angelides campaign and Sullivan and Newman of any wrongdoing. [9] The CHP concluded in its 38-page report that the digital audio files were placed on a website that was "accessed by backwards browsing ... which does not constitute a crime." [10] The report also indicated that the "there were no security measures in place that would prevent backwards browsing." [11] The CHP recommended that no criminal charges be filed against anyone involved in "Tapegate."

Subsequently, some commentators have accused the Schwarzenegger administration of using the state police to investigate Angelides creating salacious election-season headlines. [12] These comments were echoed after political opponents of New York Governor Elliot Spitzer accused Spitzer of using New York state police for political purposes. [13]

Aftermath

In the months leading up to the Democratic primary, Steve Westly consistently beat Governor Schwarzenegger in hypothetical general election matchups, while Angelides' poll numbers were usually equal to or slightly behind Schwarzenegger's. Once Angelides won the nomination, most polls showed him behind Schwarzenegger (though not far behind). Later into the campaign many voters likely believed Schwarzenegger would be re-elected whether they voted for Angelides or not. Schwarzenegger defeated Angelides in a landslide.

From the period after Angelides' nomination up to election day, there was much criticism of Angelides' campaign. In particular, many felt that he did not advertise enough in the early stages, enabling the Republicans to label him.

One of the biggest differences was Schwarzenegger's far superior name recognition, from his film career and association with the Kennedy family. Angelides was not only considered an unknown by comparison, but his campaign also did not air a single biographical ad until very late into the campaign. [14]

Money was also a factor. In the Democratic primary alone, Steve Westly spent $43 million ($35 million was of Westly's own fortune), compared to Angelides' $28.1 million (though an additional $10.4 million though independent campaigns on Angelides' behalf helped narrow the gap with Westly). Schwarzenegger spent around $42 million during the whole of 2006, likely most of it in the general election as he did not face a serious primary challenge, while Angelides was estimated to only spend around $10 million after winning the nomination.[15]

Garry South, Steve Westly's campaign manager, stated Angelides' attacks on Schwarzenegger came across as boastful and partisan to the electorate. The attacks failed to register and perhaps backfired, because Angelides' failed to take into account Schwarzenegger shift back to the political center, moderating his policies and returning to close co-operation with the Democratic-dominated assembly since his widely unsuccessful 2005 special election.[16]

Angelides proposed a rollback in tax breaks for individuals making $250,000 or more, which opponents criticized as raising taxes. These attacks, along with Angelides' history of advocating tax increases, hurt his campaign in a similar manner to Walter Mondale's pledge in the 1984 Presidential Election.[17]

Lastly, according to campaign aides, Angelides was said to have micromanaged his campaign, down to minute and esoteric details such as paper shredders and the color of briefing papers.[18]

After his defeat, Angelides has stated that he will stay involved in California politics, not ruling out another run for Governor or other statewide office.

Real estate development

Angelides was appointed president of AKT Development Corp. (a company owned by one of his business mentors, Angelo Tsakopoulos) in 1984. In 1986, Angelides founded his own land development company, River West. Angelo Tsakopoulos, Angelides' former business partner, has been a major campaign donor to California office-holders, who, together with Angelides as chair of the California Democratic Party in the early 1990s, disbursed millions of dollars to Democratic candidates. Tsakopoulos has donated over $3,200,000 to Angelides' campaigns beginning in 1993 and for the 2006 gubernatorial race, Tsakopoulos has donated $3,750,000 to Mr. Angelides with his daughter, Eleni Tsakopoulous-Kounalakis donating $1,250,000.[38]

Angelides' development firm, River West, is most known for their development in a floodplain [39] called Laguna West, which is located outside Sacramento in Elk Grove, California. Laguna West was one of the first developments designed along the principles of New Urbanism. For this project, as well as his history of promoting New Urbanism, Angelides was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Award from the Congress for the New Urbanism on June 11, 2005.

Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission Chair

On July 15, 2009, former land developer Phil Angelides was named Chairman of a bi-partisan 10-member Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission, created by Congress to investigate the events that led to the monumental 2008 collapse of the financial markets. The Commission is mandated with reporting back to Congress by the end of 2010, "with a series of conclusions about what occurred, and recommendations as to how to avoid future market breakdowns." [40]

Quotes

For us to live in an oil-dependent society is to live in fear. The fear of terrorism funded with the very dollars we spend at the gas pump. The fear of war to defend or defeat oil-fueled regimes in the Mideast. The fear of what happens to our families and our jobs when, inevitably, oil prices soar out of sight. The fear of what is happening to our planet and the legacy we are leaving to our children and grandchildren.[41]

I believe President Bush is running deficits in Washington very deliberately. His plan is to finally run up so much debt that it inevitably creates pressure on the funding of things that count, in terms of the long-term strength of the society: educating kids, retirement security for American families. A mini version of that is going on in Sacramento.[42]

It takes more than empty soundbites to educate a child, more than scorched-earth rhetoric to balance a budget, more than celebrity swagger to care for the sick and the aged.[43]

Trivia

In a 2000 episode of The Simpsons entitled "Pygmoelian," there is a character who takes Moe's picture for the Duff calendar, introduced by Duffman as "Duff's Vice President in charge of calendars and fake IDs, Phil Angelides." When asked about the episode, the real-life Angelides acknowledged Simpsons creator Matt Groening as "a friend" and said "By the way, that made me very popular among my three daughters. It raised my hip status among all my daughters and their friends."[44][45]

According to seized Enron emails, during the California energy crisis, Jeff Dasovich, Enron's Director for State Government Affairs,[46] called Angelides a "chowder head" and said that he was throwing a "tantrum" after Angelides wrote a letter to the president of the CPUC, urging the commission to end direct access for large business energy consumers.[47]

References

^ Meet Phil
^ Full Biography for Phil N. Angelides
^ Students for Angelides - Welcome
^ http://www.angelides.com/media/news/2006_0429_underdog.html
^ Voter's Guide to the June 6 California Primary / Phil Angelides / His roots give him a toughness when the going's rough
^ Raine, George. Pension funds urged to sue AIG. State treasurer calls for corporate reform after stock price falls. San Francisco Chronicle, April 13, 2005.
^ The New Colossus
^ California Treasurer Backs Social Investments / Angelides emphasizes housing, human rights
^ Angelides Celebrates Earth Day and Green Investment Initiative - California Progress Report
^ McIntosh, Andrew. Cutting Sudan stocks backed. CalSTRS, pressured by students, takes a step to cut holdings in war-torn nation. Sacramento Bee, April 7, 2006.
^ http://www.treasurer.ca.gov/greenwave/update.pdf
^ Microsoft PowerPoint - 8-05 DBL five years (10-01-05).ppt
^ Treasurer Angelides Wins CalPERS Approval of Key Shareholder Protection Initiative. News release, August 18, 2003.
^ Treasurer Angelides Announces Tough New Requirements
^ Dear Chairman Donaldson:
^ Angelides, frequent Schwarzenegger critic, starts campaign to be governor | The San Diego Union-Tribune
^ Editorials - Editorial: Angelides in Democratic gubernatorial primary - sacbee.com
^ Governor: Phil Angelides - Los Angeles Times
^ CLCV News: California League of Conservation Voters
^ http://www.sfbg.com/endorsements/33end-state.html
^ SignOnSanDiego.com > News > Politics - Election fatigue could make polls a lonely place
^ Phil Angelides for Governor Endorsements
^ Inside Bay Area - Angelides says he would sign gay marriage bill
^ Raising taxes will help education, treasurer says | The San Diego Union-Tribune
^ Inside Bay Area - Angelides: Play nice with Mexico
^ Yes On 87 | About Us
^ http://angelides.com/issues/net-neutrality.html
^ http://www.angelides.com/media/releases/2006_0803_prop89.html
^ California Secretary of State - Elections & Voter Information - Initiative Update
^ CA Secretary of State - General Election- Governor - Statewide
^ abc7news.com: Westly Stands Beside Phil Angelides 7/07/06
^ http://www.angelides.com/media/news/2006_0817_latimes.html
^ CAMPAIGN 2006 / Obama gives lift to Angelides' underdog race / He stumps in L.A. for fellow Dem - governor visits S.F
^ College Opportunity for All
^ California Chronicle | California Treasurer Angelides Unveils Plan To Provide College Opportunity For All
^ http://google.com/search?q=cache:efKO4asKDt4J:www.calitics.com/showDiary.do%3FdiaryId%3D576+%22seriously+consider%22+voting+age+angelides&hl=en&gl=us&ct=clnk&cd=2
^ Angelides Campaign Downloaded Schwarzenegger Comment, Says It Was Available to the Public. Governor’s Office Says it was “Unauthorized.” - California Progress Report
^ California Election News - Developers pump up Angelides campaign - sacbee.com
^ But will he be running against his own past? January 18-24, 2006 issue of Metro, Silicon Valley's Weekly Newspaper by Peter Byrne
^ "Angelides, Thomas to Lead Financial-Crisis Probe", Wall Street Journal, July 15, 2009
^ http://treasurer.ca.gov/news/speeches/060405_renewable_energy.pdf
^ May 12, 2005 - Interview with CA Treasurer Phil Angelides
^ http://www.angelides.com/media/speeches/2006_0405_democrats.html
^ http://basie.blogspot.com/2005/05/basie-interview-with-ca-treasurer-phil.html
^ MarNews00
^ Restructuring in California Faculty
^ Enron Emails

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