Chesa Boudin Won’t Run for San Francisco DA This Fall

Chesa Boudin has read the writing on the wall. Two months after he was ousted as the city’s top prosecutor, Boudin has announced he won’t run for district attorney this fall.  

Boudin said non-stop campaigning has taken a toll on his family. The 10-point margin in favor of his recall on June 7 also signaled an uphill battle, should he decide to run again.

Boudin’s 2020 victory was close. Since then, dissatisfaction with crime has grown. Boudin’s philosophy is one of “restorative justice,” in which emphasis is placed on rehabilitation, not incarceration. In practice, many San Franciscans came to see it as a get-out-of-jail-free card for looters and petty thieves. 

Boudin’s decision places Brooke Jenkins in a stronger position this fall. She was selected to replace Boudin by Mayor London Breed. Before her appointment, she was Boudin’s most vocal critic. She has criticized the ultra-progressive prosecution model for driving up crime and diminishing quality of life in the city. 

With Boudin a non-factor, it’s unclear who will take up the mantle of restorative justice in the November race. Candidates are still jumping in. 

Last week, civil rights attorney Joe Alioto Veronese pulled papers to run. Veronese is a former police and fire commissioner, the son of a former county supervisor, and the grandson of a former mayor. He has criticized Jenkins for being too cozy with London Breed, but he too is vowing to be tough on crime. 

“The DA’s office needs to have one focus: fighting crime in San Francisco,” Alioto said. “The DA shouldn’t be focused on ribbon cutting ceremonies, protecting the mayor or conducting social experiments on the people of San Francisco. Our DA’s office will do one job: equitably and fairly prosecute the criminals preying on San Francisco. We will make our streets safe again.”