This story originally appeared in the Thursday, May 19, edition of the Daily Post. If you want the best in local news coverage first, pick up the Post in the mornings at 1,000 Mid-Peninsula locations.
BY EMILY MIBACH
Daily Post Staff Writer
The two top contenders for an Assembly seat representing most of San Mateo County are exchanging barbs, with Diane Papan’s campaign uncovering that some 17 years ago Giselle Hale auditioned for “The Apprentice” hosted by Donald Trump.
Hale, who was 26 at the time, was one of 500 people who in February 2005 auditioned for the show, according to an Arizona Republic article that opposition researchers apparently dug up.
The Papan campaign then created a website that features Hale and Trump’s photographs with a link to the article and points out that Hale has not been a registered Democrat for 10 years like she apparently claimed on paperwork she filed with the county election’s office. She registered as a Democrat in 2018.
For her part, Hale released a statement yesterday addressing both items.
“Did I audition for ‘The Apprentice’ in 2005? Yes. It was the same as auditioning for ‘Survivor’ at the time. We didn’t know the evil Trump would inflict on us. Which is why these attacks are particularly disgusting given that I was a leader in the Silicon Valley anti-Trump resistance,” said Hale’s statement.
Hale, now the mayor of Redwood City, was in business school at the time and tried out for the show with her classmates. She points out on her website that at the time, Trump was registered as a Democrat.
As for the party registration? Hale says she was “a sleep-deprived mom with a newborn when I registered to vote after changing my name. Tired eyes? DMV error? A clerical error is not leaving the party. It’s not like conservative Super PACs have spent $820k on my campaign. Oh right, that’s Papan.”
Papan is a San Mateo City Council member.
Mailers support Papan
Hale is referring to the support of various independent expenditure (IE) committees that are sending mailers out on Papan’s behalf, as reported in the Post on May 11.
One IE that is funded by a series of political action committees, including a PAC in favor of charter schools, the prison officer’s PAC, Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America PAC, the California Apartment Association and the California Hospital Association.
The Future PAC also gets donations from another PAC called Californians for Jobs and a Strong Economy. That PAC has many donors, including Fox Cable Network Services, AT&T, Amgen, In-N-Out Burger, PG&E, Valero and Chevron.
“Hale may now attempt to dismiss that she auditioned to be Trump’s ‘Apprentice,’ but her judgment and actions to mislead voters are serious – and it is up to her to explain why she misled voters about the years she wasn’t a Democrat,” Papan said in a statement.
The two are facing each other, along with South San Francisco Councilman James Coleman, Redwood City residents Alison Madden, Tania Sole, Mark Gilham and San Mateo County Community College board member Maurice Goodman in the June 7 primary. The top two vote-getters will face off in the November election.