A Right-Wing Extremest Pretending to be a Democrat


It’s disturbing that a candidate for Mayor of SLO with a long track record of right-wing advocacy is now proclaiming to be a Democrat, changing his registration just days before he announced his candidacy. Worse, he follows the Trump playbook of using fear and dishonesty to sow division in the community. We call this phenomenon “Trickle Down Trump”. Don’t be fooled, the only true Democrat in the race is Mayor Heidi Harmon.

Need proof? Below we chronicle the real Keith Gurnee in his own words.

Anti-Women’s March: Says Women’s March and Progressive “movement is about is an ideological dictatorship determined to force its will upon the rest of us.” “These ideological zealots are determined to do whatever it takes to get their own way, representative democracy be damned. … (It’s) a borderline cult.”
       – From “The impending demise of the new Progressives” and The perils of Paulding” in Cal Coast News (February 28, 2018 & April 1, 2018, respectively)

Anti-Progressive: “The Progressives are a group that uses every trick in the book to create political theater and generate public attention for its single-minded, rigid agenda… For a candidate for public office to embrace the Progressives is a frightening prospect.”
       – From “The perils of Paulding” in Cal Coast News (April 1, 2018)

Anti-Democrat: “Democrats’ supermajority is turning California into the ‘State of Insanity’”
       – From Letter to the Editor in The Tribune (January 1, 2017)

No Respect for Mental Illness: Referring to the protest over Andrew Holland’s death in the County Jail: “With schizophrenia in the news, it’s on display within the Progressives as they embrace both anarchy and big government. If that’s not schizophrenia, what is?”
       – From “The perils of Paulding” in Cal Coast News (April 1, 2018)

Trashes Our County’s Top Elected Democrats: “Supervisors Bruce Gibson and Adam Hill are a disingenuous duo in need of baby pacifiers”
       – From “Stop unfair attacks on SLO County Board of Supervisors” in The Tribune (November 7, 2017)

Blames Obama for Black on Black Crime: ““Then came the “Black Lives Matter” movement in the waning years of Obama’s presidency. While I did not vote for him, I still had great hopes that the first African-American President would have an impact on ending racism in this country. Instead, he fanned the flames of the BLM movement while alienating law enforcement and doing nothing about the soaring rate of “black-on-black” crime”
       – From “Confessions of a former Democrat” in Cal Coast News (April 26, 2017)

Anti-Immigrant: Referring to our Democratic Attorney General for supporting the rights of immigrants: “Becerra and Burton are only the latest purveyors of nonsense.”
       – From “California has become a State of Insanity under Brown, Becerra” in The Tribune (June 3, 2017)

Thinks Voters Are Stupid: “It’s a scientific fact that if you stay in California you lose one point of your IQ every year,” Truman Capote. Based on Capote’s metric, we must be living in a state full of halfwits”
       – From “California’s overflowing ballot box” in Cal Coast News (October 5, 2016)

Attacks Stricter Gun Laws: “Gavin Newsome has also sponsored Proposition 63 as his foray against the Second Amendment, the right to bear arms. This is purely a vehicle to bolster his campaign for Governor. Consider Chicago. As a city with some of the toughest gun control laws in the nation, Chicago is also the murder capital of the country due to gun violence. God forbid that California would elect this former mayor of San Francisco”
       – From “California’s overflowing ballot box” in Cal Coast News (October 5, 2016)

Calls Higher Taxes on the Wealthy, Discrimination: “Then there is Proposition 55, a measure to extend an income tax hike to be levied against the wealthiest Californians for 12 years. Is it fair to place the full will burden of taxation against one economic sector to pay for the wants and needs of everybody else at no cost to them just because we out number them? Last time I looked, I think we call that “discrimination”.”
       – From “California’s overflowing ballot box” in Cal Coast News (October 5, 2016)

Supports Destroying Santa Margarita for Profit: “With the San Luis Obispo County Planning Commission’s recent 3-2 denial of permits for the proposed Las Pilitas Quarry, what are we supposed to do? Deny all quarries and cave into this latest example of “nimbyism”? This county needs that quarry. Hopefully, the SLO County Board of Supervisors has the vision and foresight to see the need and the political courage to overcome this latest example of nimbyism.” NOTE: Gurnee worked as a frontman for developers for his entire career and actively represents the developers of this project. In a recent candidate forum he pledged to continue advocating for its approval even if elected mayor. If he will destroy Santa Margarita, what will he do to SLO?
       – From “To quarry or not to quarry?” in Cal Coast News (February 9, 2015)

This is only a sampling of what Gurnee has written. He also has repeatedly attacked Jerry Brown, Chuck Schumer and many other prominent Democrats and activists. Keith Gurnee is simply wrong for SLO, he does not share our values.

Democratic 3rd District County Supervisor Adam Hill says it best:


Heidi Harmon is a proven leader. She has:

  • moved the city forward with major environmental initiatives like expansion of our open space, Community Choice Energy (locally owned 100% renewables), and solidifying our water resources.
  • brought fiscal responsibility to city hall with an aggressive plan that tackles our unfunded pension liabilities.
  • supported local workers by requiring local hire provisions on an upcoming infrastructure project.
  • tackled housing for our next generation by getting locals preference on purchasing new homes, a down payment assistance program, legalizing tiny homes, and maximizing deed-restricted affordable units.
  • successfully lobbied Cal Poly to house thousands of more students on campus in the near future.

She is endorsed by:

  • SLO County Democratic Party and our local Democratic Clubs
  • Local Democratic elected officials like US Congressman Salud Carbajal and State Senator Bill Monning
  • Organizations like Planned Parenthood Action Fund, the CA Nurses Association, and the Central Coast Labor Council, which represents over 70,000 local workers.

For more information and to see what people like former Mayor Jan Marx is saying, read Tom Fulks’ article in The Tribune, “Like Trump? Then you’ll love Keith Gurnee as SLO mayor“.