Local labor leader Lorena Gonzalez is defending the controversial comments she made on Twitter about San Diego mayoral candidate Carl DeMaio.
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Recent polls show DeMaio in the lead to become the city's next mayor, and on Friday, he said he welcomed tough questions -- which is what Gonzalez said she was asking, referring to the revelations that DeMaio's partner has a past felony conviction.
"Are these documents true? What does it mean and what does it mean if you become mayor? I think those are valid questions," explained Gonzalez, CEO of the San Diego and Imperial Counties Labor Council, AFL-CIO.
Because the questions are coming from Gonzalez, that may mean others will take notice because she is considered one of the most powerful figures in San Diego politics.
Gonzalez has given millions of dollars to back Democratic candidates, and she has openly opposed DeMaio, who wants to cut pensions for union workers.
She said DeMaio's partner is not off limits, and added he has done paid work for the city councilman's campaign.
"Who is this guy? What role is he going to play at City Hall and should we care?" asked Gonzalez.
Gonzalez also tweeted: "I've read about Jane Filner's past, Mindy Fletcher's past." She added that if DeMaio's partner were a woman, the story would have come out sooner.
10News examined the court documents in question and is not reporting the details because the incidents happened during a troubled youth more than 20 years ago.
DeMaio declined to comment Friday, but a statement from his spokesman called Gonzalez's questions "an inappropriate examination of a candidate's loved ones."
DeMaio's fellow candidates at Friday's mayoral candidates forum had mixed reactions.
"Well, that's up for the voters to decide," said Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher.
"I don't think we should get personal in this race," San Diego County District Attorney Bonnie Dumanis added.
Rep. Bob Filner, who is backed by Gonzalez's Labor Council, said even he is sympathetic.
"I think these personal attacks have no place. I mean, it's our ideas and where we stand and what we're going to do for the city," Filner said.
Critics say Gonzalez is taking the rare step of publicly going after DeMaio because she's afraid he will become the city's next mayor.
However, Gonzalez said she just wants transparency.
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