The two best known candidates for the county Board of Supervisors first faced off five years ago, when they both sought to become the next San Diego mayor.
Neither Bonnie Dumanis nor Nathan Fletcher made it past the 2012 primary election. And both share a history of tainted political contributions ending up in their treasury.
Dumanis, the Republican former district attorney, and Fletcher, a former Republican state legislator who became a Democrat, received thousands of dollars from San Diego towing companies that were later found to have violated city campaign rules by funneling money through their drivers and others to mask the true source of contributions.
In different ways, both had a role in a more serious political scandal that continues to reverberate today — the intervention into local elections by a tycoon from Mexico who now has been convicted of 36 federal charges and is facing years in federal prison. The D.A.’s mayoral bid benefited from hundreds of thousands of dollars in illegal political spending. Fletcher and his team turned away the foreign donations, according to a federal indictment.