Editorials

Elkarra for Twin Rivers school board

Basim Elkarra is one of two candidates running in the Twin Rivers school board special election.
Basim Elkarra is one of two candidates running in the Twin Rivers school board special election. aseng@sacbee.com

It’s unfortunate that the Twin Rivers Unified School District had to slog through an expensive and ugly campaign. But at least Election Day is here, and there are two strong candidates to fill the Area 5 seat that has been vacant for too long.

Basim Elkarra is the more promising contender, and deserves support from those among 11,200 eligible voters who haven’t already mailed in their ballots.

Sonja Cameron was appointed by the school board in December after Cortez Quinn belatedly resigned. Cameron only served a month before Democratic activists and neighborhood leaders collected enough signatures to unseat her and force the special election.

Democrats recruited Elkarra, whose energy and connections could help Superintendent Steven Martinez push forward on needed improvements.

The campaign was marred, however, by a scurrilous, anonymous flier against Elkarra, appealing to the worst anti-Muslim bigotry. In a decade as executive director of the Sacramento office of the Council on American-Islamic Relations, he has spoken out forcefully against discrimination and terrorism.

We trust voters ignored the fliers, and focused instead on the character and qualifications of the candidates. Elkarra gets our nod to prove himself.

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