DeMaio event called "disgusting," "publicity stunt"
San Diego Reader
By Chad Deal
November 8, 2011
Last night, city councilmember and mayoral candidate Carl DeMaio held a fundraiser at Downtown Johnny Brown’s bar and grill for the owners of a coffee cart and a hot dog stand who have shut down operations on the Civic Center Plaza, reportedly due to unsanitary conditions and intimidation from people perceived to be part of the Occupy San Diego movement which has been on the concourse and, more recently, the nearby east lawn since early October.
In an interview with Fox 5 News, DeMaio claimed that rent subsidies have been provided for the vendors for the past three weeks, a move which some critics say only encourages the businesses to stay closed.
Ray Lutz, an Occupy San Diego participant, activist, and 2010 Democratic Candidate for Congress in California's 52nd congressional district, said the event was sparsely attended and only served to undercut DeMaio’s claims of support for small business.
“This doesn’t help small business operate,” Lutz said during a press conference at the Civic Center Plaza this morning. “It helps them to close.”