Saturday, November 7, 2020

Even Liberal Silicon Valley Rejects Stanford’s Politics

Several readers have asked how Stanford voters compare with California voters overall on two key ballot measures.  To this I’ve added Santa Clara County, home of Silicon Valley.

One is Proposition 16, an effort to overturn Proposition 209 that banned affirmative action and giving preference on the basis of race, ethnicity, religion, and other defining characteristics.  Here are the results.

Stanford.  71.3% Yes

Santa Clara County.  51.8% No

California.  56.5%. No

Both Silicon Valley and California voted for merit.  Stanford voted for positive discrimination.

Another ballot measure is Proposition 22, which treats app-based drivers as independent contractors, not employees.  If voted down, many drivers would lose the ability to work part time to earn extra money.  Here are the results.

Stanford. 70.5%. No

Santa Clara County.  52.1%. Yes

California. 58.6%. Yes

From their secure tenured jobs, Stanford voters want to impose onerous conditions on the freedom of Californians to work part time to earn extra money.  This is shameful. It’s reason alone to abolish academic tenure.

Stanford is not just out of touch with America and California, it is even out of touch with Silicon Valley.

Will real, true political diversity ever appear at Stanford?  The honest answer is no.  The best that can be hoped for is that Stanford’s Presidents will continue to support academic freedom.

Wednesday, November 4, 2020

Politics On The Farm (Stanford), November 3, 2020

Several thousand faculty, staff, and students who live in Stanford Campus Housing are registered to vote in Stanford’s exclusive 94305 zip code.  Stanford includes eight precincts.  For reporting purposes, Santa Clara County combines them into two super-precincts.  In the data that follow, I further combine them into one comprehensive result for 94305.


Here are the results:


                      Biden               Trump          Others


Stanford     1,860 (94.7%)    68 (3.5%)    37 (1.8%)


California     (65.3%)            (32.9 %)       (1.6%)


The most important ballot measure in my view was Proposition 15, which was an attempt to change a key provision in Proposition 13.  Approved in 1976, Proposition 13 taxed all property at 1% of its sales price and limited annual increases in assessments to a maximum of 2% a year.  Proposition 15 would create a split roll by removing commercial and industrial property from the 2% annual limit, replacing it with an assessment based on market value.  This change would amount to an estimated statewide tax increase of between $6-11 billion on commercial and industrial property.  Proposition 15 leaves the annual 2% property tax Increase limit on residential property unchanged .


                              Yes                            No


Stanford          1,664  (86.4%)          262  (13.4%)


California             (48.3%)                   (51.7%)


Several brief comments.


First, there is barely a twinge of political diversity at Stanford.  There was one Trump vote for every 27 Biden votes.  Blink and you might miss the Trump votes. 


Second, Stanford faculty and students are much further left on the political spectrum than the state itself.


Third, California voters rejected an increase in property tax assessments on commercial and industrial property, while Stanford faculty, staff, and students voted overwhelmingly for it.