Chavez Admits Pressing Rosen

County supervisor candidate Cindy Chavez has confirmed that she raised concerns about prosecuting George Shirakawa Jr. during a luncheon with Santa Clara County District Attorney Jeff Rosen at P.F. Chang’s in January. Despite the intervention by Chavez and others, Shirakawa was charged five weeks later with five felonies and seven misdemeanors and immediately resigned from office. He subsequently pled guilty to all of the charges.

Chavez described the encounter to the San Jose Mercury News as “very cordial, direct and honest conversation” rather an attempt to apply pressure tactics to convince the county’s head prosecutor to leave Shirakawa in public office for another four years. During the conversation, Chavez asked about Rosen’s plan’s to run for re-election and hinted that his standing with minority voters could be hurt by charging the former supervisor with crimes.

Other than the admission by Chavez, who doesn’t return San Jose Inside’s calls, the item in the Mercury News’ April 28, 2013 “Internal Affairs” column was largely a rewrite of a column by “The Fly” that appeared on San Jose Inside on April 23.

Consistent with the daily’s recent practice, the IA item refashioned, without attribution, much of San Jose Inside’s reporting, including the timing and location of the meeting, the nature of the conversations, the mention of Chavez’s support for Rosen’s 2010 Republican opponent and even The Fly’s descriptions of Chavez’s remarks as “veiled threats” and of Shirakawa as Chavez’s “political ally.”

P.F. Chang’s Chinese Bistro previously figured in another unattributed Mercury News use of original research.  Last October, Metro posted a copy of a Feb. 17 receipt to its website showing that Shirakawa had paid for two Stella Artois beers, a Devil’s Canyon Amber draft and a piña colada with his county charge card and then filed a false declaration claiming no alcohol had been served. The receipt obtained by Metro became a key piece of evidence in the District Attorney’s case against the supervisor.

The Mercury News cropped out the URL on the document, ran a copy of the receipt without disclosing its source and on November 19 published an editorial in which the paper congratulated itself for documenting examples of Shirakawa’s spending abuse “in a Page One story Sunday by Mercury News reporters.”


  1. —During the conversation, Chavez asked about Rosen’s plan’s to run for re-election and hinted that his standing with minority voters could be hurt by charging the former supervisor with crimes.—

    Clearly Ms. Chavez is so corrupt that her definition of honesty (as in “honest conversation”) includes leveling veiled—cordial, if you wish—threats to use her political influence to ruin careers. What a sweetheart. Not only does she have zero respect for the judicial system, but her comments about the “minority voters” (over whom she apparently believes she reigns) seem to indicate she considers them so ignorant and racist that they’d recklessly use their vote to avenge the prosecution of an incompetent, self-destructive felon, just because he’s viewed as one of their own. Is she right about about this? Are the county’s minorities as detestable in the voting booth as were the D.C. voters who reelected Marion Barry? Cindy Chavez seems to think so.

    The great irony in all of this is Ms. Chavez is running for a supervisor’s seat that, based on her actions, she doesn’t even respect. By her attempts to keep that seat occupied an additional four years by a man who lacked the honesty, integrity, competence, and commitment required to properly serve the public, Ms. Chavez unequivocally revealed her lowly opinion of that position. And, by her championing the cause of that train wreck of a politician—a man who failed his children, his creditors, his friends, his supporters, his oath, and his public—Ms. Chavez demonstrated her eagerness to subject the entire county to additional jeopardy, thereby surrendering her right to ever claim she cares about the public good.

    • Wow, finfan, you’re on a roll.

      Good point… I agree that when Cindy tossed out the race card before the fortune cookies arrived, she betrayed her lack of regard for her constituency’s intelligence. I’d suggest that the Latino community elect a better representative, except that they never even elected her, she was installed by the unions. Which is weird, because she’s not a working class person, but a college grad from Fremont who snuck into the political elite on the coattails of Amy Dean. How she has a claim to represent electricians and steamfitters, I’ll never know.

      Luckily we have a DA with integrity, who’s being attacked by the prosecutors’ union because he’s reforming the office and had the courage to convict Shirakawa. Why people who earn 200k with Juris Doctor degrees need a union in the first place is befuddling to me. Weren’t unions created for garment workers in turn-of-century sweat shops before OSHA, minimum wage and overtime laws? Here it’s just a way for people who can’t make the cut in the high tech economy to get fat salaries, retain job security irrespective of performance and retire at 50, all on the taxpayer’s nickel.

      • A DA with integrity?  Are you kidding?  Take the blinders off and let’s look at what is really going on here. 

        Chavez has a meeting with the DA about an ongoing criminal investigation and her run for office is part of the discussion.  Any DA who even agrees to takes a meeting like that has NO integrity.  Can any friend of a criminal suspect just call up the DA and get a personal meeting to discuss on ongoing criminal prosecution/investigation and how that prosecution might effect their carrer?  I think not. 

        Further, no only did DA Rosen take the meeting, his upcoming re-election was discussed. These are the actions of a corrupt politician not a person with integrity.

        Basically the meeting was, you do a favor for me and I will do one for you.  You support me and I will support you.  She got the meeting AND he took the meeting because she is running for an office that could be helpful for him.  Rosen has no integrity.

    • Your last paragraph sums up how I feel about Chavez.  She obviously disregards the voters & community members of the east side district.  Her intervention should have been done years ago to Shirakawa for him to stop gambling, stop stealing and stop cheating the system.  Instead she chose to let him spiral all the while knowing full well his dirty dealings.  She was his co-conspirator with the union back door deals to the theft of donations from big contributors.  They back all the same crew and they get all the same donations.  They’ve made it clear they’re incestuous when it comes to politics and they draw from the same well so there is absolutely no way in hell that a reasonable person can assume that Chavez was a dupe and clueless about what was going on.  If that is her stance then she’s an idiot and misses a lot right under her nose (reason enough to not support her for any elected office) 

      Her misplaced sense of loyalty is to a crook, a soon to be convicted felon.  She makes no apologies for that and refuses comment whenever the heat is on.  SMARTEN UP SAN JOSE.  Pay close attention because otherwise this not yet caught thief will end up sitting in the same chair on the same dais doing the same shameful things that Shirakawa did.  Don’t be victims of their dirty politics anymore!  Vote for anyone but Cindy Chavez.

  2. I’m focused more on the plate of food in the picture then I am in the words.  Too much Chavez bashing all at one time.  Can you spread it out a little?  Maybe every five articles or every three weeks. 

    Okay back to the food.  That isn’t P.F. Chang’s is it?  Come on tell the truth.

    • Yes, it was a publicity image from P.F. Chang’s.

      The article above was an update to last week’s article that provided more information, based on Chavez’s response to the report of her intervention on behalf of Shirakawa.

      As for spacing articles out, we will be releasing information as it becomes available, due to the rapidly approaching June 4, election date. The slowness of public document requests, the refusal of Chavez to answer questions and the unwillingness of organizations she is associated with to release information has complicated the reporting process during this critical time window.

      Nonetheless, we’ll roll out information as it becomes available, even it it means multiple articles.

      Enjoy the beef.

      • Yes, public entities have a way of taking the maximum amount of time to respond to public records requests when it’s in their interest to do so.  It’s a good thing that a runoff will be likely.  If Chavez gets that far.

        I looked at the campaign filings.  Of the Water District board, Estremera, Santos and Judge all gave $500 to Chavez.  LeZotte and Hsueh gave smaller amounts to Alavardo.

  3. So, “Other than the admission by Chavez, who doesn’t return San Jose Inside’s calls, the item in the Mercury News’ April 28, 2013 ‘Internal Affairs’ column was largely a rewrite of a column by ‘The Fly’ that appeared on San Jose Inside on April 23.”

    So the Mercury doesn’t see fit to acknowledge sources regarding this story. This doesn’t reflect well on that fading paper. And at least one commenter owes The Fly an apology after referring to the original report as a “smear.”

  4. Why wouldn’t Chavez respond to the newspaper/writer that brought it up in the first place…especially if she’s confirming the story?  That’s suspect behavior.

    • Probably because she saw what happened to her crook buddy Shirakawa after he and his wingman Eddie Garcia took the SJI interview and tried to laugh their way through the denials and sidesteps.  Best to not take the interview when you have something to hide and I’m sure Chavez has plenty to hide.  I sure wish whoever knew where all the bodies are buried would have enough INTEGRITY to come forward and inform the public about how dirty they all are and free us from the stain on our city & county politics that they have been for decades.  The east side deserves better than this lot. 

      If Chavez is the leader she says she is and has the community support like she boasts about then why does she run from the public interview?  She’s dirty unless she’s willing to take the interview.  No more “innocent until proven guilty” with this dirty crowd.  They’re worse than the mafia.

  5. P.F Changs, got the celebrity tables wired, ya think?
      Fustrated Finfan must be the waiter, how else could have Metro gotten the reciepts for the 2 beers.
      This is getting goofier than the Little Saigon / Reed excapade.
    You all gatta Love our loco pollytix! Just when you think it’s over, they pull you back in with Georgie and a couple of beers. Great work Finfan.
      What I found amusing, was a fellow paper Boy, stated that , now we could not deliver the Merc, on a bike, and throw the paper on the porch from the side walk. not enough weight. Perhaps fold them like an airplane? Now that is funny!
    The Village Black Smith

    • They’re only celebrities in their own minds Black Smith.  They think they’re celebs who deserve special treatment and use tax payer money and campaign funds like personal ATM’s.  They’re dirty so who cares who the whistle blowers are?  The truth is still the truth and these jerks are liars and thieves.  They should all be tared and feathered in the Village Square.

      Tired of buying that line about how they’ve done so much good for the community so we should all be forgiving of their mistakes.  Their mistakes cost hundreds of thousands of dollars (probably more but we’ll never know the true total) dollars that should have gone to preschool programs, mental health treatment, health care, city, school & county services, dollars that will NEVER BE RECOVERED.  Where is this list of accomplishments for the community?  They take credit for stuff they didn’t really do and they want the public to look the other way while they rob us blind.  Ya basta!  No more!

  6. Chavez’s admission is having a conversation with Jeff Rosen. 
    But the content of the “conversation” is based on Jeff Rosen’s recollection.
    And the title of the article is Chavez Admits Pressing Rosen.
    posted by The Editor?
    What’s going on with SanJoseinside.

  7. Chavez admitted that she discussed Shirakawa (would Rosen have brought that up, really?) and that she had “a very cordial, direct and honest conversation.” Translation, it wasn’t a lovefest. Rosen was closing in on her longtime buddy and she had other ideas.

    If Chavez has another interpretation, let her speak up and agree to be interviewed instead of being so dodgy.

  8. As someone observed in an earlier SJI post: Cindy Chavez is Shirakawa in a pants suit. She has been a bully and a fraud since she emerged at the South Bay Labor Council in the 90’s.

    Chavez talks the talk, while her and her husband pull in a (top 1%) six figure public paycheck.

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