Carl DeMaio's campaign has been thrown off a bit in recent weeks, losing the initiative and being forced to react as other candidates set the topics for debate. The response from Team DeMaio has been a series of stunts in the hopes of seizing some of that initiative back -- but they just keep backfiring.
First, DeMaio tried for a dramatic 'gotcha' moment against Nathan Fletcher in the first televised debate of the election. DeMaio triumphantly asked Fletcher whether he was currently the subject of any ethics investigation, and seemed surprised when Fletcher said no. Team DeMaio distributed copies of an ethics complaint after the debate, but it turned out that the complaint had already been dismissed and, according to the city's ethics chief "It's 100% correct that Nathan had no way of knowing about this unless the complainant told him."
Oops. Big moment to shine, but the ethics commission moved too quickly on the bogus claim. Maybe this is another reason that DeMaio tried to de-fund the ethics commission after it fined him for bad ethics.
He tried again today, criticizing Nathan Fletcher for receiving a donation from former San Diego City Manager Jack McGrory, who served during the early years of the pension underfunding. This presents a tricky standard for DeMaio, since it would make him responsible for the record of every one of his donors, past, present and future. But as it turns out it also makes him a hypocrite, since the first reaction from Team DeMaio was to... also ask McGrory for money.