As the Rancho Mirage City Council election ramps up, it is increasingly clear to many that outspoken Mayor Pro Tem G. Dana Hobart is in the political bull’s-eye.
In recent days, he’s become a shrinking violet, unwilling to answer questions. What is he afraid of? Does he see the writing on the wall? Is the public pressure getting to him?
He’s resorted to ridicule to make himself look better. He has lambasted one of his opponents as an “alleged” attorney. He’s verbally attacked another opponent for how long she has lived in Rancho Mirage. He has lashed out at the media for getting it wrong. As Trump turns to Fox TV, Hobart has turned to his favorite media channel to stroke his ego. Are these the desperate actions of a desperate man? What is he afraid of?
At least 10 local political leaders are lending their support to one of his primary challengers, Katherine “Kate” Spates, saying Hobart is a bully who controls and manipulates the City Council. They say it is because of Hobart’s iron fist that Rancho Mirage is becoming an elitist, isolated city in the Coachella Valley.
Uken Report reached out to Hobart on Feb. 14 with a series of five questions to give him a chance to explain, defend himself and to clear the air. He did not.
Hobart was presented five questions, in writing, and given about 48 hours to respond. He did not.
In the interest of full disclosure, here are the questions Uken Report presented to Hobart.
- It is my professional observation that you more than your two colleagues, Charles Townsend Vinci and Iris Smotrich, are a target in the April 10 Rancho Mirage City Council election. Do you feel a target on your back? Why or why not?
- You more than any of your colleagues are quoted in local media. All you have to do to corroborate that is do a Google search. I have tried talking to others but they deferred to you. Last fall, out of respect for the mayor’s position, I reached out to Mayor Townsend for a comment on CV Link. He referred me you. When I contacted you, you referred me to him. You, of course, ultimately spoke. If it’s the expansion of the Aqua Caliente Casino Spa Resort, you’re the one quoted. Is this the way you want it? Are others scared to talk? Frankly, you are seen as “controlling” the City Council. Do you?
- There are at least two emails that been blasted to many, if not all, elected leaders in the Coachella Valley. In part it, says, “This message is a warning about one man, G. Dana Hobart. He can be friendly and charming and is highly intelligent. He is also self-absorbed, a masterful liar, compassionless, and has a boundless appetite for power. In other words, he has autocratic and psychopathic traits, which isn’t meant to suggest he has bodies buried in the backyard, but he does metaphorically bury his enemies.” How do you respond?
- In a public Facebook post, Skip Paige, who is supporting Kate Spates for City Council, said, “G Dana Hobart wants to control everything. Many residents and local business owners are afraid of him. It’s like it’s his city and everyone has to do what he wants. He’s just a bully.” It’s not the first time I’ve heard you described as a bully. Are you? Where does that label come from?
- Lastly, why after the president of the Children’s Discovery Museum of the Desert implored all City Councilmembers to attend a very special 30th anniversary celebration and fundraiser did you still choose not to attend? Richard Kite and Iris Smotrich are attending and Kite told Uken Report he would encourage all councilmembers to go.
Crickets from the Hobart camp.