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Archive for February, 2016

Michele Martinez Pulls Papers for Supervisor, But Warchest Can’t Buy Denny’s Moons Over My Hammy

Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 22, 2016

Andrew Do, Michele Martinez, Steve Rocco

Supervisor Andrew Do (R-Westminster), Councilwoman Michele Martinez (D-Santa Ana), and Steve Rocco (NPP-Santa Ana)

Santa Ana Councilwoman Michele Martinez (D) has joined convicted ketchup thief Steve Rocco (NPP) in pulling papers to challenge the re-election bid of Supervisor Andrew Do (R).  Additionally, the enigmatic Robert Bao Nguyen has also pulled papers to challenge Do’s re-election bid in the First Supervisorial District, which consists of Santa Ana, Garden Grove, Westminster, Midway City, and northern Fountain Valley.

Martinez clearly wasn’t planning a challenge to Do until recently, as she still doesn’t have a campaign account for Supervisor open, and her City Council account had $8.16 in it as of December 31.  No, that’s not a typo: she had eight dollars and sixteen cents.  If she had a campaign meeting at Denny’s, she wouldn’t even be able to buy the $8.99 Moons Over My Hammy with her Council account.  The good news for her is she has no loans or unpaid bills, so she has the $8.16 free and clear.

Even if she is depending on independent expenditures to assist her in a bid against Do, IEs alone cannot power a campaign.  The candidate has to have some funds available.  Additionally, most IEs like to see candidates be able to give themselves self-help before the IEs will intervene, particularly when a challenger is seeking to unseat an incumbent.

Martinez is clearly the Democrats’ last-minute replacement candidate, as Santa Ana Mayor Pro Tem Vince Sarmiento (D) had been exploring a run for Supervisor for quite some time, even opening a campaign committee for Supervisor on January 8 (interestingly, an IE PAC supporting Sarmiento for Supervisor opened on January 7).

By entering the 2016 race against Do, Martinez continues her decade-long streak of alternating between bids for higher office and bids for re-election:

  • In 2006, Martinez won her bid for City Council with 32.6% of the vote in a four-way race, narrowly edging Republican Evangeline Gawronski, who got 30.2% of the vote.
  • In 2008, Martinez made an ill-fated bid to unseat Mayor Miguel Pulido, who crushed her 55.0%-29.3% in a four-way race.
  • In 2010, Martinez was unopposed for re-election.
  • In 2012, Martinez won only 16.7% of the vote for the open 69th Assembly District seat, coming in second-to-last out of five candidates.
  • In 2014, she won 52.0% of the vote in a four-way race in her bid for a third term on the City Council.

Martinez raised $31,108 in her 2014 re-election bid for Council.  Do reported $113,786 cash-on-hand at the end of 2015.  Rocco has never raised money in any of his numerous bids for office.

Awkwardly, the same day that Martinez pulled papers against Do, CBS 2/KCAL 9 ran a story entitled, “On Average, 1 Shooting Reported Each Day In Santa Ana In 2016.”  It’s safe to assume the campaign of former prosecutor Do will highlight the rising crime in Martinez’s city.

Convicted ketchup thief Steve Rocco, a former Orange Unified School District Trustee, pulled papers in early January and completed filing on Tuesday.  He is running as “Retired Educator/Writer” on the ballot.

Curiously, on Wednesday, the enigmatic Robert Bao Nguyen pulled papers to challenge Do.  It is unclear if he is simply another Rocco-type running, or if there is a more sinister motive behind his candidacy, such as pulling Vietnamese American votes away from Do in an effort to force him into a November run-off against Martinez.  Even the name Robert Bao Nguyen seeks to benefit from the name ID of Garden Grove Mayor Bao Nguyen (D), who is running for Congress in the 46th District, which includes, among other places, Santa Ana and small portions of Garden Grove.

(Cue my usual Nguyen disclaimer: I am not related to the mysterious Robert Bao Nguyen nor Garden Grove Mayor Bao Nguyen.  The last name Nguyen is held by 36% of Vietnamese people.)

Posted in 1st Supervisorial District, Santa Ana | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »

Judicial Campaigns: LA Deputy DA Jumps into Nelson-Yellin Race; Defeated HB City Attorney McGrath Jumps into Wagner-Zicbeck Race

Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 17, 2016

In a fascinating turn of events that will assuredly cause a run-off election, Los Angeles County Deputy District Attorney Thuy Dinh Pham (who is an Orange County resident despite working for LA County) has entered the race for Superior Court Judge Office No. 40, which currently includes Orange County Supervisor Shawn Nelson and Orange County Deputy District Attorney Larry Yellin, who is the immediate past president of the Orange County attorneys union.  Former Huntington Beach City Attorney Jennifer McGrath has entered the race for Superior Court Judge Office No. 3, which currently includes Deputy District Attorneys Megan Wagner and Scott Zidbeck.

Office No. 40 – Nelson, Yellin, and Now Pham

Pham’s entry adds a female Vietnamese-American prosecutor to a race already featuring a prosecutor and a County Supervisor, both white men.  In the June primary, Pham will presumably draw the lion’s share of the high-propensity Vietnamese-American vote.  As the only woman on the ballot, Pham will also draw a significant portion of the women’s vote, though she is hampered by the fact that not all voters know Thuy is a woman’s name.  Her entry into the race deals the biggest blow to Yellin since the Deputy District Attorney vote will be split between Pham and Yellin.

Supervisor Shawn Nelson should come in first in June for Office No. 40, but in a race with three major candidates, it is unlikely he can break 50% in the primary, thereby causing a November run-off.  The question is who comes in second: Yellin or Pham?  With identical ballot designations, demographics could become a factor.  Their ballot statements will also play a role.  Will Pham describe her prosecutorial career without mentioning it has been in the LA County DA’s office or will she highlight that fact to try to capitalize on the negative publicity surrounding the Orange County DA’s office?  Pham’s entry has made a contentious race for Judge a complete toss-up.

Office No. 3 – Wagner, Zidbeck, Stein, Philips, and Now McGrath

McGrath has joined, by far, Orange County’s largest field of candidates for Superior Court Judge, which already includes Deputy District Attorneys Wagner and Zidbeck, along with attorneys Andrew Stein and Wayne Philips.

In 2014, McGrath was defeated in her bid for a fourth term as the elected Huntington Beach City Attorney in 2014, losing 56%-44% against Michael Gates.  While she brings the most elected experience of any candidates, she faces a steep uphill battle against two prosecutors, and her name ID outside of Huntington Beach is likely as poor as that of Philips or Stein.  McGrath likely comes in a strong third though due to her Huntington Beach name ID, her ballot statement presumably touting her experience, and the fact that she is one of only two women in the five-person race.

Wagner and Zidbeck should take the top two spots.  Who gets first and who gets second is tougher to predict but largely irrelevant since both would make the November run-off.  With five candidates in the race, including two prosecutors, it is highly unlikely there would not be a run-off.

Wagner is married to Assemblyman Don Wagner.  In 2014, Stein lost a run-off for Superior Court Judge in Los Angeles County against prosecutor Tom Griego.

Fascenelli Out

It appears attorney Fred Fascenelli has not filed the Declaration of Intention form required for candidates for Superior Court Judge by yesterday’s deadline, so he will not be able to continue the filing process for either Office No. 3 or Office No. 40, both of which he had previously pulled papers for.  Fascenelli is married to Villa Park Councilwoman Diana Fascenelli.

All Quiet for Office No. 49 – Murray vs. Martin

In the race for Superior Court Judge Office No. 49, unless one of the candidates fails to complete filing, it will be a head-to-head race between Deputy District Attorney Mike Murray and attorney Thomas E. Martin.

Posted in Orange County | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

AD-74: Katherine Daigle Pulls Papers, Joining Karina Onofre in Field of Increasingly Bizarre Challengers to Matt Harper

Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 11, 2016

Assemblyman Matt Harper (R-Huntington Beach)

Assemblyman Matt Harper (R-Huntington Beach)

Katherine Daigle (R), Perennial candidate for Mayor of Irvine, has pulled papers to challenge the re-election bid of Assemblyman Matt Harper (R-Huntington Beach).  Daigle, who received 14% of the vote in 2012 and 11.6% of the vote in 2014, was accused of being a decoy candidate to split the Republican vote in the mayoral races, but Steven Choi (R) prevailed over Larry Agran (D) in 2012 and Mary Ann Gaido (D) in 2014 despite Daigle’s presence in the race.

Daigle’s quixotic bid for State Assembly means one of two things: she wasn’t a decoy candidate in her mayoral bids or her handlers to make her a decoy candidate for mayor have inadvertently unleashed her desires for any public office.

I don’t understand people who lose bids for office who decide to run for higher office.  How does losing two races for mayor make Daigle think she could win a race for Assembly?  (Similar note: How did Carly Fiorina think losing a U.S. Senate race would make her a good candidate for President?  At least Fiorina finally had the good sense to drop out of the presidential race yesterday.)

Daigle pulling papers combined with Karina Onofre being the sole Democrat to pull papers could well give AD-74 the most bizarre field of challengers for a sitting incumbent.

Readers may recall Onofre inadvertently played a key role in getting Harper elected to the Assembly in 2014.  That year, Onofre pulled papers for AD-74 as a Republican but filed papers as a Democrat (she had only been a Republican for 20 months).  Onofre pulled enough of the Democratic vote away from actual Democrat Anila Ali to push Ali into third place.  Harper then landed in second place behind Newport Beach Councilman Keith Curry (R).  Thanks to the top two primary and Onofre getting Ali into third place, Republicans Curry and Harper advanced to the run-off where Harper prevailed.  Had Onofre not gotten into the race, it would have been Curry vs. Ali in November, where Curry would have won by a landslide.

For the entire OC Political file on the bizarreness of Karina “Karina” Onofre, click here.

Posted in 74th Assembly District | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

NOCCCD Special: Blount Defeats Hwangbo, Both Far Ahead of Billings and Salehi

Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 10, 2016

While 99.99% of people who were following election results yesterday were looking at the New Hampshire Presidential Primary, yesterday was also election day for the North Orange County Community College District, Trustee Area 3.

I had written about the candidates in this election here and about how the special election came to be here.

Cypress School Board Member Steve Blount (R) defeated La Palma Councilman Steve Hwangbo (R).  They both came in far ahead of Southern California Edison Contract Manager Daniel Billings (NPP), who had been appointed to the NOCCCD seat until his appointment was overturned by petition in favor of the special election, and Buena Park Library Board Member Al Salehi (NPP), who had led the petition effort to overturn the Billings appointment and force this special election for the seat.

NORTH ORANGE COUNTY COMMUNITY COLLEGE DISTRICT
Governing Board Member, Trustee Area 3, Short Term
Completed Precincts: 82 of 82
Vote Count Percentage
STEPHEN T. BLOUNT 2,381 35.6%
STEVE HWANGBO 2,066 30.9%
DANIEL D. BILLINGS 1,246 18.6%
ALAN “AL” SALEHI 990 14.8%

Blount’s entire margin of victory came from the city of Cypress.  While he defeated Hwangbo in Anaheim and Buena Park, it was his Cypress landslide that enabled him to overcome Hwangbo’s massive lead in La Palma.

City Blount Hwangbo Billings Salehi
Anaheim 342 238 133 100
Buena Park 1087 906 738 691
Cypress 577 250 180 109
La Palma 367 657 186 86

Blount beat Hwangbo in Anaheim by 104 votes (12.8%) and in Buena Park by 181 votes (5.2%).  His 327-vote (29.3%) landslide over Hwangbo in Cypress was the key to overcoming Hwangbo’s 290-vote landslide (22.4%) in La Palma over Blount.

  • In Anaheim, Blount won 42.1% while Hwangbo won 29.3%.
  • In Buena Park, Blount won 31.8% while Hwangbo won 26.6%.
  • In Cypress, Blount won 51.7% while Hwangbo won 22.4%.
  • In La Palma, Blount won 28.3% while Hwangbo won 50.7%.

Billings was a consistent and distant third in all four cities while Salehi was a consistent fourth in all four cities.

There’s a certain irony that Salehi financed the effort to overturn the Billings appointment by petition to cause the special election, yet Salehi came in last and Billings came in third.

Posted in North Orange County Community College District | Tagged: , , , | 2 Comments »

Shawn Nelson Launches Bid for Superior Court Judge

Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 9, 2016

Shawn NelsonYesterday, Orange County Supervisor Shawn Nelson (R-Fullerton) filed the initial candidacy papers and paid the filing fee to run for Superior Court Judge Office Number 40, held by the retiring Steve Perk (R-Rancho Santa Margarita). Orange County attorneys’ union head Larry Yellin (D-Mission Viejo) had filed the initial candidacy papers and paid the filing fee for the same seat last week.  Litigation Attorney Fred Fascenelli (R-Villa Park) has also pulled papers for both this judicial seat and Superior Court Judge Office Number 3.

For years, Nelson had been rumored to be interested in a judgeship.  In May 2015, he confirmed his intent to seek a judgeship in an interview with the Voice of OC.

The mystery had been when Nelson would run, with speculation running the gamut, including a 2018 bid for judge, an appointment by the Governor, or being one of the replacement candidates if the recall effort against Judge M. Marc Kelly had qualified.

Nelson has $162,832 remaining in his Supervisorial account, all of which could be transferred into an account for judge.  A Senior Deputy District Attorney, Yellin just opened his account for judge last month. However, the union he heads, the Orange County Attorneys Association, has $262,132 in its campaign accounts, though certainly, OCAA is not going to spend the majority of its treasury on a single judicial race when it’s top priority in spending will be County races.

Besides OCAA, Yellin is also endorsed by the Orange County Employees Association (OCEA), which is the County’s largest union, and the Association of Orange County Deputy District Attorneys (AOCDDA), which is the County prosecutors’ union. AOCDDA has a modest $20,843 in its coffers.  OCEA has $312,372, but certainly has other priorities, particularly since Yellin is not a member of OCEA.  It’s entirely possible the unions largely stay out of the race under the argument that they’d rather have Nelson off the Board of Supervisors.

If Fascenelli decides to file in for judicial Office Number 3 instead of judicial Office Number 40, his opponents in that seat would be prosecutors Megan Wagner (R-Irvine) and Scott Zidbeck (R-Laguna Niguel).  Fascenelli is married to Villa Park Councilwoman Diana Fascenelli while Wagner is married to Assemblyman Don Wagner.

Fred Fascenelli came in fourth in a bid for judge in 2014, winning 6.1% of the vote, coming in behind Assistant District Attorney Kevin Haskins (49.1%), Deputy Attorney General KC Jones (33.4%), and Attorney Thomas E. Martin (11.4%).  Haskins (R-Laguna Niguel) and Jones (D-Orange) advanced to a November run-off, which Haskins won with 57.9% of the vote.   This year, Martin (R-Rancho Santa Margarita) has pulled papers for judicial Office Number 49 to run against Senior Deputy District Attorney Mike Murray (R-Tustin) for the seat being held by Elaine Streger (R-Mission Viejo).

If Nelson were to defeat Yellin (and assuming Fascenelli or another third candidate doesn’t cause a run-off), the special election to fill the remaining two years of Nelson’s term representing the Fourth Supervisorial District could be either consolidated with the November 2016 general election or be a standalone special election in late February 2017 or early March 2017, depending on the timing of Nelson’s exit from the Board.

There are no campaign contribution limits for judge.

Posted in 4th Supervisorial District, Orange County | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

AD-55: Chen Outraises Opponents Combined

Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 4, 2016

In the 55th Assembly District race, Walnut Valley Unified School District Trustee Philip Chen raised more in three days in the race than all of his opponents raised combined for the entire race so far.

Chen reported $141,556 cash on hand, but $100,000 of that was a loan.  Diamond Bar Councilman Steve Tye reported $26,029 cash on hand across three accounts.  Chino Hills Councilman Ray Marquez reported $3,950 cash on hand.  West Covina Councilman Mike Spence did not file an electronic campaign finance report, so we know he had raised less than $25,000.  The sole Democrat in the race, Social Worker Gregg Fritchle, does not have an open account.

Chen’s $41,555 in contributions were all received in the last three days of the reporting period: December 28-December 31.  Tye’s $33,194 in contributions all came in during the last three months of the reporting period, covering October 1-December 31.  Marquez’s $3,950 in contributions came in during the last four weeks of the reporting period: December 5-December 31.

Interestingly, there were no transfers from any of these officeholders’ prior accounts.  Of course, it could be because Chen’s school board account and Tye’s City Council account have negligible balances, as do their 2014 Assembly accounts.  Marquez had closed his City Council account.

Chen and Tye have significant debt from their 2014 Assembly accounts, demonstrating that both are willing to spend their own money in the 2016 race.  In their 2014 Assembly accounts, Chen owes himself $100,399 while Tye owes himself $57,600.

For visual learners:

Candidate 6/30/15
Cash Balance
Contributions Loans Unpaid
Bills
Expenditures Cash on Hand
(COH)
COH Minus
Unpaid Bills
COH Minus
Unpaid Bills and Loans
Chen for Assembly $0 $41,555 $100,000 $3,350 $0 $141,555 $138,205 $38,205
Chen for School Board $622 $0 $100,399 $0 $0 $622 $622 ($99,777)
Tye for Assembly 2016 $0 $33,195 $1,250 $8,420 $10,404 $24,041 $15,621 $14,371
Tye for Assembly 2014 $1,441 $0 $57,600 $5,624 $377 $1,064 ($4,560) ($62,160)
Tye for City Council $983 $0 $0 $0 $60 $923 $923 $923
Marquez for Assembly $0 $3,950 $0 $0 $0 $3,950 $3,950 $3,950
Notes: Figures may be off by one dollar due to rounding.

 

In fairness to

Posted in 55th Assembly District | Tagged: , , , , | 1 Comment »

Live from CRA AD-68 Candidate Forum: Choi, Sidhu, Pauly, and Deligianni-Brydges

Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 2, 2016

We’re live from Orange City Hall for the 68th Assembly District Candidate Forum, sponsored by the California Republican Assembly.

The four candidates are:
*Steven Choi, Mayor of Irvine
*Harry Sidhu, former Anaheim Councilman
*Alexia Deligianni-Brydges, Orange Unified School District Trustee
*Deborah Pauly, former Villa Park Councilwoman

The emcee is Dale Tyler CRA Vice President for Orange and San Diego Counties. Orange Councilman and OC GOP Chairman Fred Whitaker delivers the invocation. Orange Mayor Pro Tem Mark Murphy leads the Pledge of Allegiance.

The forum is being recorded for Chapman University’s broadcast station.

The moderator is OC Political blogger and CRA Executive Vice President Craig Alexander, who lives in Dana Point in the 73rd Assembly District.

Alexander will take all questions from the audience but admonishes the audience that questions on areas beyond the scope of the Assembly will not be asked, giving the example of troop levels in Afghanistan.

Alexia Deligianni-Brydges gives her opening statement. She speaks of California’s former economic opportunities and how her family fled from Communist Romania to California. She blasts high taxes and excessive regulation. She states she is an independent businesswoman and educator who can fix California.

Harry Sidhu gives his opening statement. He says he believes in free enterprise, traditional marriage, and pro-life values. He speaks of immigrating to the United States and working in engineering and then business.

Deborah Pauly gives her opening statement. She notes the cyclical nature of politics. She says there needs to be a conservative course correction in light of the liberal control of Sacramento. She notes her service on Central Committee. She urges electing a conservative not a moderate.

Steven Choi gives his opening statement. He speaks of his election as Mayor delivering a conservative majority seizing control of the Irvine City Council that was held by a former liberal majority. He spoke of his record on the City Council and School Board. He speaks of his faith and his family.

Alexander asks if Prop 13 limits should be changed.

Sidhu says he will fight to protect Prop 13. He says he will fight against high taxes. He says he will fight crime. He points to SB 259 (Bates), which modifies Prop 13 with the backing of the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association, and he argues that unions oppose SB 259.

Pauly points to her fight against an OUSD Bond, which she noted was an end run around Prop 13. She speaks in detail about SB 259 and how it is clean up legislation closes a loophole on business property tax avoidance. She points to her Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association endorsement of her second Villa Park City Council run and her Supervisor run.

Choi warns that high taxes endanger jobs and the economy. He argues in favor of Prop 13 and conservative economic policies to strengthen job creation.

Deligianni-Brydges speaks of how taxes harm the economy and how she supports Prop 13. She speaks of her record fighting bonds and other high tax issues on the OUSD Board.

Alexander asks about the Governor’s proposed gas tax increase.

Pauly states the social engineering of getting people out of cars is causing the decline in the gas tax. She calls for greater creativity and points out that the Governor is pointing to record surplusses. Pauly challenges the wisdom of the Vehicle Mileage Tax proposal.

Choi opposes the gas tax increase. He proposes lowering the gas tax to stimulate economic activity because when people buy more gas, there will be more revenue from increased gas consumption.

Deligianni-Brydges states California has the highest gas taxes and worst roads. She calls for building more refineries and drilling to create energy independence away from OPEC.

Sidhu calls for administrative fixes and closing loopholes instead of raising taxes. He blasts high speed rail. He says transportation companies deliver food to his restaurants, and his businesses will be impacted by a gas tax increase.

Alexander asks if the candidates would sign the Americans for Prosperity “No New Taxes” pledge.

Choi says he signed it several months ago. He believes in lower taxes to help the economy and job growth. He blasts high taxes for driving business out of California.

Deligianni-Brydges says she will sign any “No New Taxes” pledge. She says she made that pledge to her school district constituents.

Sidhu says he pays more taxes than the rest of the candidates combined. He says he knows how to balance a budget. He says he was the first to sign the pledge.

Pauly is sorry that taxes are so high and that Sidhu has to pay so much in taxes. Pauly says she would sign the pledge and that she has made her career on fighting taxes. She says she twice agendized abolishing the Villa Park business license fee. She attacks Choi for not doing so in Irvine.

Choi responds to Pauly. He notes Irvine has one of the lowest business license fees in Orange County. He says that taxpaying residents would have to subsidize businesses if they abolished the fee.

Alexander asks about crony capitalism.

Deligianni-Brydges says crony capitalism is terrible and is where lobbyists run the show. She has fought it on her school board.

Sidhu states his campaign contributors are citizens and blasts unnamed opponents for receiving campaign contributions from home builders.

Pauly blasts Republican crony capitalists who pick winners and losers by giving sweetheart deals to special interests. She says if a policy is good for one entity, it should be good for everyone. Pauly attacks Sidhu for giving tax breaks to specific businesses instead of tax breaks for everyone.

Choi wants to stimulate small businesses as the real job creators. He opposes giving subsidies to big corporations. He notes he has not received any union funds and notes an unnamed opponent has received significant union contributions in the past.

Sidhu argues Pauly has never run a business in her life. He says there is nothing wrong with special concessions to bring business to a city.

Alexander asks about Common Core.

Sidhu says he opposes Common Core. He states California schools are last in the nation. He says high school students are not even at the eighth grade level. He blasts federal mandates.

Pauly says she opposes Common Core. She says students and education should not be common. She blasts both political parties for selling out children for federal dollars. She blasts social engineering in education. She calls for scrapping Common Core.

Choi says he is the most experience education experience of any of the candidates. He speaks of his after school tutoring center of the last 25 years. He notes his business experience there in rebuttal to an earlier Sidhu comment. He says Common Core have frustrated parents at his tutoring centers. He says Common Core has lofty ideals but it totally ignores the basics, and he objects to Common Core for that reason.

Deligianni-Brydges points to her educational doctorate and opposes Common Core. She argues children should not be punished for getting the right answer. She wants to align standards with college and the work force.

Alexander asks a question about AB 32 and global warming.

Pauly calls global warming a bogus idea. She spoke of the global cooling theory when she was in school. She says global warming has been disproven and that is why climate change is the new term by its advocates. She blasts AB 32 and social engineering.

Choi says it is good to keep the environment clean but completely questions the idea of global warming being caused by human intervention. He opposes cap and trade and other government imposed environmental regulations, calling them an extreme effort to tax businesses and economic growth.

Deligianni-Brydges speaks of the importance of a clean environment but does not want to harm the economy or raise taxes. She points to AB 32 causing gas tax increases.

Sidhu calls global warming a hoax. He asks if there is a wall between California and Arizona or California and Nevada. He says it is a scheme to drive out business from California. He points to aerospace and manufacturing being driven out. He says global warming is a money making scheme for environmental lists.

Alexander asks about legislation to require pro-life centers to post literature in favor of abortion.

Choi says he is opposed to that legislation because he is a Christian, he is pro-life, and he wants to protect all lives, including those of the unborn.

Deligianni-Brydges says she wants to defund Planned Parenthood. She says she is a Christian and is pro-life.

Sidhu says he was horrified by videos showing Planned Parenthood selling body parts. He says he is pro-life and would oppose such legislation.

Pauly says she is a Christian and that the Bible informs her views on life. She speaks of hearing the Roe v. Wade debate as a child. She warns of the creep from the first trimester in the 1970s up to partial birth abortion in the present day.

Alexander asks about SB 277, the vaccination bill.

Deligianni-Brydges warns this could harm certain children and supports parental right to choose.

Sidhu blasts the bill, mandatory vaccination, and removing the religious exception.

Pauly speaks of researching the bill while running the precinct walking operation for John Moorlach. She argues in favor of parental choice and the right of families to determine the safety of their children. Pauly says she personally chose to immunize her children, but would not impose the decision on others.

Choi calls it an intrusion on lives and should be left to parents to decide with their physicians. He says some children have unique needs, and the Governor and Legislature should not impose one side fits all.

Alexander asks how the candidates would prevent another attack like in San Bernardino.

Sidhu blasts social welfare programs. He says it took him 4 years to legally immigrate 42 years ago. He says illegal immigrants have broken the law and should be sent back to their native countries.

Pauly notes she is a veteran of the United States Air Force. She is a cofounder of the Anti-Jihad Coalition of Southern California. She supports legislation to allow only American law in American courts in order to block Sharia law. She says she stood up against radical jihadist efforts to recruit from college Muslim Student Unions. She wants to stand up for America and its values.

Choi says national security is an important and serious issue. He defends the Second Amendment and argues an armed citizenry would discourage violent attacks. He wants to secure more funding for local governments to protect their citizens. He notes that his city of Irvine has been the safest big city in America for the past 11 years.

Deligianni-Brydges calls for a wall on the border. She says the Second Amendment is important for self-defense. She urges more thorough background checks of immigrants, including social media checks to prevent anyone with anti-American sentiment from entering the U.S.

Alexander asks about making California a shall issue state for concealed weapons permits.

Pauly says she gun control is ineffective. She supports the Second Amendment. She wants federal law to trump state law on the right to keep and bear arms. She says gun control simply protects criminals’ guns.

Choi states he believes the right to bear concealed arms is important. He says Korea bans individual gun ownership, and when he immigrated to the United States, he understood that self-defense is a critical part of American culture. He says gun ownership is important to self-defense. He argues most people would carry concealed weapons rather than brandishing them.

Deligianni-Brydges says gun control would only allow criminals to have guns. She says gun ownership is a constitutional right.

Sidhu pulls out his NRA card and says he owns several guns. He wants more support to fight gun control.

Alexander asks about the use of eminent domain for private uses.

Choi opposes it entirely. He says a fundamental tenet of capitalism is the right to private property. He attacks using eminent domain to convey private property to someone else and blasts redevelopment.

Deligianni-Brydges blasts eminent domain for private use as unconscionable.

Sidhu speaks of Anaheim’s Charter Amendment to block eminent domain for private uses in his city. He blasts Villa Park and Irvine for not doing so.

Pauly speaks of the American Dream of home ownership. She points to eminent domain for private use as the height of government abuse of power. She says they didn’t need to pass such a thing in Villa Park because no Councilmember in her city would ever consider eminent domain for private use.

Choi says Irvine actually did adopt an ordinance 5-7 years ago to prevent eminent domain for private use.

Alexander asks about union contributions.

Deligianni-Brydges says she has never and will not do so.

Sidhu says he has “no intention” of accepting any union money for the 60th Assembly District.

Pauly points out that they’re running for the 68th Assembly District. She says she has never taken union money and primarily has small individual contributors.

Choi says Sidhu is the only one on the dais who benefitted nearly $2 million in union funds in bids for various offices including for Supervisor against Shawn Nelson. Choi says he refused to take police union money when running for Mayor. He says he refused the easy union money, and he says he will not accept any union money.

Sidhu says Choi is going back to the past. He says he is looking to the future.

Alexander asks if anyone will seek the endorsement of any government employee union.

Sidhu says he will not accept their endorsements and will not interview with them.

Pauly says she will not accept their endorsements, but she will keep the door open to talking to them to hear their issues.

Choi points to the California Teachers Association endorsement being followed by contributions. He says it is best to refuse their endorsement. He says he knows where they come from, and he will refuse their endorsements.

Deligianni-Brydges says she will not accept any union endorsements.

Alexander asks about civil asset forfeiture.

Pauly says she believes assets should not be seized until someone has been convicted. She says she would seek the advice of subject matter experts like attorneys. She says she asks auditors about audits and realtors about real estate, etc.

Choi says he believes police should not be able to seize assets without due process of a court judgment proving that someone is dangerous in society. He calls it an invasion of property rights.

Deligianni-Brydges says she believes government has no right to seize property before conviction.

Sidhu supports asset forfeiture for the convicted. He wants strong laws restricting how law enforcement can seize assets.

Alexander asks about unfunded pension liabilities.

Choi calls this his favorite topic. He says in Irvine under Christina Shea and himself, had city staff develop a plan to pay down the City’s pension liability three years ago. He points to paying down the City’s entire $120 million unfunded pension liability in 7 years.

Deligianni-Brydges blasts legislators for making benefit increases, lower retirement ages, retroactive pensions, and risky investments. She says Governor Brown has made a step forward. She urges increasing employee contributions significantly to pensions.

Sidhu says Anaheim put new employees into lower pension plans. He says it is necessary to elect a lot more Republicans to the State Legislature. He warns of San Bernardino and Detroit who went bankrupt due to unfunded pension liabilities.

Pauly says Villa Park requires its employees to pay their entire employee contribution. She says Villa Park has paid off its pension liability. She says California’s pension liability will bankrupt California. She says she would work with John Moorlach to make the state solvent.

Alexander asks about tax credits for specific industries.

Deligianni-Brydges says she would not do so for any single industry, instead giving tax credits to all.

Sidhu says tax credits should be given to all, not specific industries. He says lower taxes will grow jobs.

Pauly says tax breaks should be given to everyone. She wants to focus on transparency and modernizing public records laws to reflect 21st Century technology. She wants to impose the Brown Act upon the Legislature. She says an informed electorate is the best electorate.

Choi says tax credits for certain industries is interesting, but notes all industries are special in their own way. He has a dream of convincing Democrats to form a special economic zone encompassing all of California so everyone can benefit.

Sidhu gives his closing statement. He speaks of his business experience. He rattles off his Congressional endorsements, legislative endorsements, County endorsements, and City endorsements.

Pauly says the political establishment has caused the problems California and the nation encountered. She says she previously supported Deligianni-Brydges for OUSD and wants her to stay there at OUSD. She says Choi was the wrong man for the Assembly in 2010 and now in 2016.

Choi says past service record shows which candidate would best represent conservative values in Sacramento. He points to his audits of the Great Park, his paying off pension liabilities, and adding In God We Trust to City Council chambers. He will fight for the unborn and lower taxes.

Deligianni-Brydges quotes the Bible on leadership bringing stability. She points to her research skills and backgrounds in both education and business.

Alexander tries to end the debate.

Sidhu says no one likes Pauly and attacks Pauly’s DUI. He accuses her of not filing her campaign finance reports.

Pauly says people do like her, and she has filed her reports.

Alexander is finally able to end the forum at 8:43 PM.

Posted in 68th Assembly District | Tagged: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

SD-37: Moorlach Leads Wagner in Fundraising and Cash on Hand

Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 2, 2016

Senator John M. W. Moorlach and Assemblyman Donald P. Wagner

Senator John M. W. Moorlach and Assemblyman Donald P. Wagner

Well, campaign finance figures for the second half of 2015 are out, and OC Political will be doing our signature in-depth slicing and dicing of campaign finance numbers in the coming days, as we’ve done in prior elections.  First up is the 37th Senate District, where Assemblyman Don Wagner (R-Irvine) is seeking to unseat Senator John Moorlach (R-Costa Mesa).

Moorlach surpassed expectations in fundraising, bringing in $128,754 in new contributions in the last six months of 2015.  During the same period, Wagner raised $6,700 in new contributions, with $3,000 coming from Facebook.

Moorlach had $45,765 in expenditures.  Wagner had $29,006 in expenditures, of which $16,500 went to a poll with Competitive Edge Research.  It should be noted Wagner transferred the same amount, $16,500, from his Assembly account to his Senate account on December 23.

Moorlach has $19,772 in unpaid bills, of which $12,350 is owed to Tim Clark, the consultant on his Senate race who is now his chief of staff.  Wagner has no unpaid bills.

Moorlach had $105,225 cash on hand.  However, if he were to pay his unpaid bills, that would leave $85,453 in Moorlach’s cash on hand.  Wagner’s cash on hand at $59,094, assuming he were to transfer his Assembly and Attorney General accounts into his Senate account.  With $85,453, Moorlach’s cash on hand is $26,359 higher than Wagner’s.

For visual learners:

Candidate 6/30/15
Cash Balance
Contributions Transfers In Unpaid
Bills
Expenditures Transfers Out Cash on Hand
(COH)
COH Minus
Unpaid Bills
Moorlach for Senate $22,236 $128,754 $0 $19,772 $45,765 $0 $105,225 $85,453
Wagner for Senate $10,090 $3,750 $16,500 $0 $23,221 $0 $7,119 $7,119
Wagner for Assembly $71,347 $0 $0 $0 $5,785 $16,500 $49,061 $49,061
Wagner for Attorney General $2,980 $2,950 $0 $0 $0 $2,914 $2,914 $2,914
Notes: Figures may be off by one dollar due to rounding.

 

In fairness to Wagner, he had not yet announced his bid for Senate in 2015.  I can only assume he made the decision after conducting that Competitive Edge Research poll.

Posted in 37th Senate District | Tagged: , , , | 1 Comment »