to Seek Council Seat
By Lookout Staff
July 11 – Six years after his last bid for City
Council, local activist Jerry Rubin is throwing his hat back into
the ring after leading an unsuccessful but highly publicized effort
to save the Downtown ficus trees.
Rubin, who is expected to announce his candidacy at a press conference
Friday, says he plans to run on a "pro-peace," "pro-trees"
and "pro-accountability" platform in the race for four
open council seats.
While Rubin has been a regular speaker at council and board meetings
for at least a decade, he will bring to the election wider name
recognition won during the nearly year-long crusade to save 30 of
the 157 ficus trees slated for removal along 2nd and 4th streets.
The failed bid was covered extensively in the local press and even
made national headlines. Rubin, who founded Treesavers to fight
against the City’s plan to remove the trees, is currently
leading an effort to establish a City Tree Commission.
Rubin’s previous council bids have been unpredictable and
at times controversial. After running in 2000, he dropped out of
the 2002 Jon Louis Mannrace five days before the election, citing
his continuing battle with depression and his desire to "show
support and unity" for several other candidates.
Two years later, in 2004, he pulled papers but didn’t run.
In 2006 he decided not to pull papers.
In the 2000 race, Rubin -- who has been an activist with the Alliance
for Survival since 1979 -- made headlines when he tried to use “peace
activist” as his official ballot designation.
After a two-year court battle, a federal appeals panel unanimously
upheld a U.S. District judge’s dismissal of Rubin's First
“A ballot is a ballot, not a bumper sticker,” the panel
Rubin, who sells bumper stickers on the Third Street Promenade,
called the panel's decision "a defeat for free speech and for
After legally adding "peace activist" as his middle name
in 2003, Rubin says he wants to have his name listed officially
on the election ballot as Jerry Peace Activist Rubin.
In his 2000 bid, Rubin, who declined any contributions, finished
seventh with 4,597 votes.