OC Political

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Posts Tagged ‘Don Wagner’

3 Weeks, 3 More Vacant Seats: Irvine, Santa Ana, and Stanton

Posted by Chris Nguyen on March 14, 2019

In January, I wrote about OC’s Five Vacant Seats: OC Supervisor for the Third District, Fullerton City Council, Orange City Council, Seal Beach City Council District 1, and Santa Ana Unified School District Board of Education.

Well, in the last three weeks, three more vacancies have developed in Orange County.

Irvine

The most well known vacancy is the one in Irvine that will result when Supervisor-Elect Don Wagner (R) vacates the Mayor’s seat.  However, there are numerous misconceptions about which vacancy in Irvine will result.

Some candidates claimed during the Supervisorial election that if Wagner won, there would be a special election for Mayor.  That is false.  Some press accounts claimed that the Council would appoint the new Mayor.  That is based on out-of-date information.

Under current Irvine ordinances as authorized by the Irvine City Charter, Mayor Pro Tem Christina Shea (R) will automatically succeed Wagner as Mayor once he vacates the Mayor’s seat.

The vacancy in Irvine is for Christina Shea’s Council seat.  Under the Irvine City Charter, the City Council has 60 days to appoint a new Councilmember after Shea vacates her Council seat (i.e. after she becomes Mayor after Wagner resigns).  If the Council fails to appoint a person to fill the vacancy, then there will be a special election.  Whether appointed or elected, Shea’s successor will serve through the November 2020 election.

Santa Ana Ward 4

The next most well known vacancy is in Santa Ana.  Ward 4 Councilman Roman Reyna (D), who was just elected in November, resigned effective March 1 as part of a settlement agreement in a lawsuit that challenged his eligibility to run for the Council seat in the first place.

Under the Santa Ana City Charter, the City Council has 30 days to appoint a new Councilmember to serve through the November 2022 election.  If the Council fails to appoint a person by March 31, then there will be a special election on November 5, which will be consolidated with the Santa Ana Unified School District special election.

Six people met Tuesday’s deadline for applications.  The Council is scheduled to interview the applicants next Tuesday, March 19.  The applicants are:

  • Phil Bacerra (D), a former Santa Ana Planning Commissioner who lost the Council election to Reyna and was the plaintiff in the lawsuit that led to Reyna’s resignation
  • Kenneth Khanh Nguyen (NPP), a Santa Ana Planning Commissioner
  • Jennifer Oliva (D), a Santa Ana Arts and Culture Commissioner
  • Gale Oliver, Jr. (NPP), a Baptist bishop
  • Phillip Ortiz, Jr. (NPP), an Internet installer
  • Maricela Vallejo (NPP), a Santa Ana Personnel Board Member

Stanton

The least publicized vacancy is the one in Stanton.  Mayor Pro Tem Al Ethans (R) resigned effective February 28 after more than 22 years on the Stanton City Council.

As Stanton is a general law city, the City Council has 60 days to appoint a new Councilmember to serve through the November 2020 election.  If the Council fails to appoint a person by April 29, then there will be a special election on November 5.

Applications for the seat are due at 5:00 PM today.  A City Council subcommittee is scheduled to meet with the applicants the last week of March, and the Council is slated to meet on April 23 to vote on a potential appointee.

Status of OC’s Eight Vacancies

Here’s a quick run-down on every vacancy in Orange County since the November 2018 general election.  There are 2 completed elections (Supervisor and Seal Beach), 1 appointment completed (Fullerton), 2 pending special elections (Orange and Santa Ana School Board), 2 pending appointments (Santa Ana and Stanton), and 1 pending vacancy (Irvine).  All of these seats are up for election again in 2020, except for Santa Ana and Seal Beach which will be up for election again in 2022:

Posted in 3rd Supervisorial District, Irvine, Santa Ana, Stanton | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Election Day in BOS-3: $1.2 Million+ in Spending Ends Today

Posted by Chris Nguyen on March 12, 2019

Moments ago, the polls opened in the Third Supervisorial District, as voters decide who will fill the seat vacated by now-District Attorney Todd Spitzer for the remaining 22 months of his unexpired term.  In 51 weeks (i.e. 1 week short of a year), voters in the Third District will return to the polls for the primary election for the same seat for the next four-year term.

Ballots Received

While the polls close at 8 PM tonight, it is widely expected that vote-by-mail (absentee) ballots will comprise the overwhelming supermajority of the votes.  As of yesterday, 46,632 ballots had been received by the Registrar of Voters.  Of those, 5,466 arrived yesterday, and party breakdown on those ballots is not yet available.  Of the other 41,166 ballots that had arrived by Friday, 44.7% were from Republicans, 32.6% were from Democrats, 20.1% were from No Party Preference (NPP) voters, and the remaining 2.6% were from third party voters.

The 46,632 ballots received are 19.8% of the 236,026 vote-by-mail ballots issued by the Registrar.  That number will of course climb as more ballots arrive in the mail today at the Registrar’s office, additional vote-by-mail ballots are delivered directly to polling places, and still other vote-by-mail ballots are mailed today to arrive at the Registrar’s office by Friday’s receipt deadline under state law.

There are 341,809 registered voters in the Third District.  Those 46,632 vote-by-mail ballots received are 13.6% of registered voters, but of course that turnout number does not include any of the poll voters (myself included) who only began casting ballots moments ago nor does it include the various vote-by-mail ballots not yet received that I described above.

Campaign Spending

Over $1.2 million was spent in this election between the candidates, political parties, and independent expenditures, with over $500,000 in support of Loretta Sanchez (D), over $400,000 in support of Don Wagner (R), and over $100,000 in support of Kris Murray (R).  Additionally, more than $63,000 was spent attacking Wagner by the Orange County Employees Association, the County’s largest labor union, and over $54,000 was spent attacking Murray by multimillionaire Howard F. Ahmanson and his Fieldstead & Company.

Deborah Pauly (R) spent just over $10,000, and the other three candidates (Republicans Larry Bales, Kim-Thy “Katie” Bayliss, and Katherine Daigle) spent nothing.  There were no independent expenditures for or against Pauly, Bales, Bayliss, or Daigle.  Bayliss and Daigle’s campaigns seem to only exist on the ballot and in cyberspace, as neither candidate has spent any money, appeared at any candidate forums, or submitted a candidate statement for the sample ballot.

The campaign finance reports for the IEs are largely complete, but those for the candidates are only complete through February 23.  After February 23, the only information we have from the candidates are regarding contributions received totaling $1,000 or more.

Here’s the campaign finance chart for the candidate’s campaigns:

Candidate Contributions
Through 2/23
Loans Unpaid
Bills
Expenditures Cash on Hand
(COH)
COH
Minus
Unpaid Bills
COH Minus
Unpaid Bills
and Loans
Through 2/23
$1,000+
Contributions
After 2/23
Don Wagner (R) $187,760 $100,000 $120,366 $232,279 $184,747 $64,381 ($35,619) $54,000
Loretta Sanchez (D) $193,846 $100,000 $0 $138,321 $256,652 $256,652 $156,652 $25,900
Kris Murray (R) $50,512 $52,000 $1,150 $97,797 $49,974 $48,824 ($3,176) $18,000
Deborah Pauly (R) $6,275 $10,500 $0 $10,269 $6,506 $6,506 ($3,994) $0
Katie Bayliss (R) $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Katherine Daigle (R) $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Larry Bales (R) $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0 $0
Notes: Figures may be off by one dollar due to rounding.

Here’s the chart of the independent expenditures (excluding spending by the Democratic Party of Orange County and the Republican Party of Orange County):

Independent Expenditure Pro-Sanchez Pro-Wagner Anti-Wagner Pro-Murray Anti-Murray
Orange County Employees Association $243,770 $0 $63,418 $0 $0
Orange County Attorneys Association $99,605 $0 $0 $0 $0
Engage OC $0 $55,300 $0 $0 $0
Howard F. Ahmanson / Fieldstead & Company $0 $0 $0 $0 $54,497
California Women’s Leadership Association $0 $0 $0 $31,037 $0

My father received an IE mailer from the Orange County Professional Firefighters Association, but I have been unable to find an IE report from the firefighters union on either the County Registrar of Voters’s web site or the Secretary of State’s web site.

Here are the member communications from the respective political parties:

  • Republican Party of Orange County: $133,317 (supporting Wagner and opposing Sanchez)
  • Democratic Party of Orange County: $45,122 (supporting Sanchez and opposing Wagner)

What That Spending Looked Like to Voters

Here’s a glimpse of what all that campaign activity looked like to two different houses in the Third District: my parents’ house and my house.

Phones

My parents received 6 phone calls from either Don Wagner’s campaign or the Republican Party of Orange County in support of Wagner.  My NPP father also received a robocall from Deborah Pauly that emphasized her support of Donald Trump.

Mail

My parents were kind enough to let me have all their mail from the special election, so the first picture is what it looked like when I spread all of their special election mail on my living room floor, and the second picture is all of my special election mail spread out on the same portion of my living room floor:

My Republican mother and NPP father received 32 pieces of mail for this special election from candidates and independent expenditures

I received 14 pieces of mail for this special election from candidates and independent expenditures

Comparing my mail as a Republican voter with the mail sent to my Republican mother (or to both my parents) finds fairly similar compositions.  The radical difference is the mail sent to my NPP father.  He received more pro-Sanchez mail than my mother or I received from all sides in this election.  While all pro-Sanchez forces pushed hard for my father’s vote, OCEA pushed the hardest, producing the majority of all the pro-Sanchez mail my father received.

None of the candidates’ campaigns directly attacked their opponents in the mail, with all the attacks either coordinated through the political parties or done separately by independent expenditures.

As an NPP voter, my father was rather annoyed at how the majority of the pieces addressed to him were overtly partisan.  Of the 28 pieces of mail addressed to either my father alone or to my father with my mother, a full 16 pieces praised the political party endorsements of the candidates: 9 pieces touting Sanchez’s Democratic Party endorsement and 7 pieces touting Wagner’s Republican Party endorsement.

For those of you who care about the details, here’s the breakdown of the mail in two Nguyen households…

The 14 pieces of mail I received at my home consisted of 5 pro-Wagner pieces, 2 more pieces supporting Wagner and opposing Sanchez, 1 pro-Sanchez piece, 3 pro-Murray pieces, and 3 anti-Murray pieces.  They were:

  • 3 pieces from Wagner’s campaign
  • 3 pieces from Murray’s campaign
  • 3 anti-Murray IEs from Howard F. Ahmanson/Fieldstead & Company
  • 4 member communications from the Republican Party of Orange County
    • 2 pro-Wagner
    • 2 pro-Wagner/anti-Sanchez
  • 1 pro-Sanchez IE from the Orange County Attorneys Association

Of the 32 pieces of mail my parents received at their house, 19 were addressed to my NPP father, 4 to my Republican mother, and 9 to both of them.

The 19 pieces of mail addressed solely to my NPP father consisted of 13 pro-Sanchez pieces, 2 pieces supporting Sanchez and attacking Wagner, 3 anti-Wagner pieces, and 1 anti-Murray piece.  They were:

  • 3 pieces from Sanchez’s campaign (2 in English, 1 in Vietnamese)
  • 11 IEs from the Orange County Employees Association
    • 6 pro-Sanchez
    • 3 anti-Wagner
    • 2 pro-Sanchez/anti-Wagner
  • 3 pro-Sanchez IEs from the Orange County Attorneys Association
  • 1 pro-Sanchez IE from the Orange County Professional Firefighters Association
  • 1 anti-Murray IE from Howard F. Ahmanson/Fieldstead & Company

The 9 pieces addressed to both my parents consisted of 5 pro-Wagner pieces, 2 pieces supporting Wagner and attacking Sanchez, and 2 pro-Sanchez pieces.  They were:

  • 3 pieces from Wagner’s campaign
  • 4 member communications from the Republican Party of Orange County
    • 2 pro-Wagner
    • 2 pro-Wagner/anti-Sanchez
  • 1 piece from Sanchez’s campaign
  • 1 pro-Sanchez IE from the Orange County Attorneys Association

The 4 pieces addressed to my Republican mother consisted of 3 pro-Murray pieces and 1 anti-Murray piece.  They were:

  • 1 piece from Murray’s campaign
  • 2 pro-Murray IEs from the California Women’s Leadership Association
  • 1 anti-Murray IE from Howard F. Ahmanson/Fieldstead & Company

Results

The polls close at 8:00 PM, and the first results will be released online at 8:05 PM by the Registrar of Voters.  Those 8:05 PM results will consist of the vote-by-mail ballots already received by the Registrar.

When the count is completed (which will likely be next week) and certified, whoever gets the plurality of the votes will be sworn in as Supervisor two weeks from today, on Tuesday, March 26.

Posted in 3rd Supervisorial District | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

Really? Attacking a Candidate for the Passage of Things He Fought Against?

Posted by Chris Nguyen on March 1, 2019

As longtime readers know, as the publisher, I generally don’t write posts rebutting what other bloggers on OC Political write (and there’s no pre-approval process for our writers), as each writer’s opinion is their own, but last night’s blog post accusing Supervisorial Candidate Don Wagner of not being pro-life based on his record in the State Assembly is beyond the pale.

During his Assembly tenure, Wagner had a 100% on the legislative scorecards of both the California Pro-Life Council and the Life Priority Network, scoring identically to then-Assemblywoman/now-Senate Republican Leader Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield) and to the right of even then-Assemblyman Travis Allen (R-Huntington Beach), for example.

I’m going to quote last night’s blog post and then note the reality below it.

“AB777 [Actually, this was AB775] – Required Pro Life medical clinics and Pregnancy Resource centers to promote and provide referrals to Abortion providers.  (This legislation was so reprehensible that the Supreme Court struck it down last year, Nifla V. Becerra)”

Wagner so vigorously fought AB 775 (Chiu and Burke, 2015) that the National Abortion Rights Action League (NARAL) of California took a clip of Wagner in committee and put it on YouTube under the title “Autumn Burke responds to anti-choice legislator at AB 775 hearing” and there was an article in the national liberal web site Jezebel that referred to him as “anti-abortion California Assembly member Donald P. Wagner” and quotes the video.

“AB154 – Nurse Practitioners, Midwives and Physicians Assistants can perform abortions. The purpose of this is obvious, to employ more professional who will perform abortions because less doctors are willing to participate in the procedure which make it difficult for the abortion cartel to expand their business.”

Wagner fought vigorously against AB 154 (Atkins, 2013) as well, such that NARAL California again took a clip of Wagner in committee and put it on YouTube, this time under the title “California Legislator Wants to Know Where the Underserved Women Are” and there was an article in MSNBC that attacked Wagner for his fight against this bill.

“AB980 – Cloaked as a building codes revision, this law makes it easier for buildings to be converted into surgical abortion facilities by reducing the standards for plumbing and patient treatment rooms.  Because abortion is a surgical procedure that produces medical waste (i.e. dead babies) and because it potentially involves a life threatening complications, there should be safety, health considerations and ability to transport a patient or for emergency personnel to obtain access to a patient.  These parameters however, can become expensive for a clinic to bring a facility up to those standards.  The way the California legislature responded the the Planned Parenthood sponsored bill, was the lower, rather than raise, those standards for abortion clinics.”

Wagner voted against AB 980 (Pan, 2013) FOUR times in the Assembly.

“SB128 [SB128 failed but was reintroduced as ABx2-15] Assisted Suicide – this appears to have survived it’s court battle.  It was passed in a “special session” in 2015 that was supposed to be dealing with budgetary issues only, this euthanasia law was pushed forward anyways. It passed, was signed by the governor, and faced legal challenges shortly after.  The law seems to have survived the court process, as of 2018.”

Wagner was the only opponent of ABx2-15 (Eggman, 2015) who was quoted by the article on the bill in the San Francisco Chronicle that was headlined “Assembly passes assisted-dying bill after emotional debate

On another note, last night’s blog post stated, “No one seems concerned or bothered by the fact that he vacates the seat he just ran for and will leave his city in a special election lurch, but yay for fiscal responsibility.”  Well, that’s not the case: Irvine City ordinances specifically say that the Mayor Pro Tem becomes Mayor if the latter seat is vacated (and then the City Council appoints a person to fill the subsequent vacancy on the Council).

Finally, the premise of last night’s blog post was that the writer received “a forwarded email yesterday from someone who called herself, Dr. Something-or-other, Ph.D.” who provided a “representation that [Wagner] is the only ‘Pro Life’ Third District candidate is not only untrue, because there are two other ‘Pro Life’ Republicans in the race…”  It is rather unseemly to launch an attack on a candidate based on receiving a forwarded email originally penned by some random emailer.  I’m a resident of the Third District, and I’ve not seen a single mailer, social media posting, article, or press release from Wagner (nor from any independent expenditure) claiming that Wagner is the only pro-life candidate.  Indeed, until last night’s blog post, I had not seen a single mention of abortion from any candidate literature or independent expenditure, nor was there any mention of abortion at the Third District candidate forum.

Posted in 3rd Supervisorial District | Tagged: , , | 3 Comments »

Live from the 3rd Supervisorial District Candidate Forum

Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 15, 2019

Foothill Communities Association and League of Women Voters

We are live from Third Supervisorial District Special Election candidate forum, sponsored by the Foothill Communities Association, moderated by the League of Women Voters. Five of the seven candidates are present at this forum. (This is the second forum for front-runners Don Wagner, Loretta Sanchez, and Kris Murray who appeared at a January 31 forum sponsored by the Orange County Public Affairs Association.)

The candidates (and their ballot designations) present are:

Absent are:

Coincidentally, neither Daigle nor Bayliss submitted a candidate’s statement for the sample ballot mailed to all voters, though Bayliss did submit a candidate’s statement for the online sample ballot.

Although their partisan affiliations are not listed on the March 12 ballot since County Supervisor is a nonpartisan office, Sanchez is a Democrat and the other six candidates are all Republicans. Sanchez is endorsed by the Democratic Party of Orange County while Wagner is endorsed by the Republican Party of Orange County.

The candidates are seated in the following randomly selected order: Pauly, Sanchez, Wagner, Murray, and Bales.

After welcomes and introductions by the FCA and LWV, opening statements begin at 7:15 PM.

Deborah Pauly thanks attendees and organizers. She has been active in the community since moving to OC in July 1999. She served in the Air Force in public affairs. She has lived all over the US and around the world due to her service, which made her value the US more. She notes each part of the district has different needs. She says she is available, responsive, and action oriented. She served two terms on the City Council.

Loretta Sanchez thanks the organizers, attendees, and opponents. She attended public school and then Chapman University, received various scholarships, and joked that she is a public-private partnership. She served in Congress representing OC for 20 years. She notes her effectiveness in bringing transportation funding, water funding, and education funding back to OC. She notes she is the only one on stage who voted for the Affordable Care Act. She has raised funds for local nonprofits.

Don Wagner thanks the attendees and organizers. He notes he is the only one of the seven candidates who has represented the unincorporated North Tustin area (the area represented by the forum organizers). He notes that he carried legislation drawn from the district. He was the Republican who passed the most bills of any Republican in the Democrat-controlled Legislature.

Kris Murray speaks of being a mother. She was on the City Council and Mayor Pro Tem. She points to various accomplishments, including on homelessness, Taxpayer Protection Act, and stopping mobile needle exchange. She is supported by two of the oldest neighborhood associations. because of her accessibility.

Larry Bales is the descendant of military veterans back to the Revolutionary War. He worked in the County. He claims credit for getting 45 political corruption convictions, including that of Congressman Andrew J. Hinshaw. He claims credit for empowering Howard Jarvis to pass Proposition 13. He claims credit for turning in Assessor Webster Guilliry for election crimes.

Moderator asks what are the most important issues in OC?

Sanchez speaks of fire suppression and helping evacuate her mother. She is endorsed by the fire union. She says mental health is another major issue. She points out that mental health emergencies are clogging emergency rooms for everyone else.

Wagner points to homelessness. He says many solutions are required, not one-size-fits-all. He says his city has reduced the homeless population, pointing to the point-in-time homeless count. He begins to address public safety but runs out of time.

Murray points to open space expressing opposition to development of unincorporated areas. She improved police response times in Anaheim and would like to do the same for County Sheriff’s Deputies and the Fire Authority. She points to her boots on the ground record reducing homelessness on the riverbed.

Bales wants to protect property values. He opposes special interests and dark money. He has few specifics and ends early.

Pauly cites undeveloped County-owned land. She suggests voters examine campaign finance reports. She says only she stands for the people first. Pauly opposes “the invasion of illegal immigrants.” She points to eradicated diseases coming back, due to illegal immigration.

Moderator asks about ensuring neighborhood preservation.

Wagner says as Mayor that he will seek community input to preserve community character. He points to his blocking a developer’s project in Irvine to preserve the specific plan. He notes homeowners should get what they bought in community character.

Murray says she will adhere and enforce specific plans. She points to successfully fighting slumlords in Anaheim. She notes the importance of property values and community safety.

Bales says avoid special interest money. He then speaks about the veterans cemetery.

Pauly blasts developers for “not having skin in the game.” She says they care only about making money. She will fight against high density and low-income housing.

Sanchez notes she grew up in OC and loves its nature. She says developer money is flowing to the two candidates to the right of her (Wagner and Murray).

Moderator asks about the California Disclose Act.

Murray says she led efforts for transparency in Anaheim, including lobbyist registration. She wants to help bring greater transparency to the County. She has hundreds of donations from individual people. She says she offers her cell phone number to be accessible.

Bales blasts Disney’s spending in Anaheim elections and the Disneyland parking structure. He blasts Irvine developer spending.

Pauly says she has a record of fighting for transparency. She would prefer to receive small donations, rather than large donations. She got Council meetings online when she was on the Council.

Sanchez tried to pass the federal version of the Disclose Act. She points to the example of the information box on credit card bills that she says is nicknamed the Sanchez Box. She says credit card companies spent $3 million against her.

Wagner noted Irvine just increased its Sunshine Ordinance. He notes Democrats in Sacramento have failed to pass the Disclose Act, so Sanchez should explain why they haven’t done so. He points to development projects he opposed, including those from Five Points and Irvine Company. He says he has approved no apartments, blasting an accusation that he approved 10,000 apartments.

Moderator asks about keeping the County budget balanced.

Bales speaks of pespecial interest spending in Washington.

Pauly wants to reduce spending and oppose special interest spending. She says she will rely on subject matter experts from outside government. She wants to reduce fees, fines, and licenses, but she does support cost-recovery. She will not spend more than the County takes in and says there is plenty of money in the County budget.

Sanchez says property money goes up to Sacramento and most counties get 17 percent back while Orange County gets 5 percent back. She says she will go to both Sacramento and Washington to get more money.

Wagner says it is ludicrous that changing the partisan composition of the Board will suddenly result in more money for Orange County. He note his fiscal management record at both South Orange County Community College District and Irvine. He supports Prop 13.

Murray wants zero-based budgeting. She wants to attract more employers to grow the economic pie. She notes Anaheim has 50% of its revenue from private investment. She says the Anaheim Ducks are now taking over ARTIC expenses in a deal she helped strike near the end of her Council term.

Moderator asks if the candidates represent the changing demographics of the district.

Pauly says she looks like the room. She says high taxes and fees are driving young people out due to the cost of living. She says seniors face the same challenges.

Sanchez has lived in OC for 55 years. She played in orange groves. She says the County is much more urban and diverse now. She says she knew what OC was and what it now is. She wants to be a bridge to new residents who have new needs on healthcare and education.

Wagner says OC is changing. He embraces it and notes Irvine is extraordinarily diverse. He says his City can boast of its safety and fiscal responsibility. 75+ languages are spoken in Irvine schools. Safe schools, safe neighborhoods, and good jobs are all things people seek, and there is strength in diversity.

Murray says OC is changing. She says diversity is a great strength. She loves OC’s history. She has no sidewalks and streetlights in her neighborhood and wants to protect communities and keep them intact. She speaks of Anaheim’s history as OC’s oldest city.

Bales has lived in OC for 40 years and hates the traffic. He wants to curtail new construction. He blasts the gas tax.

Moderator asks about each person’s biggest policy mistake.

Sanchez says, “Wow” and pauses for a time. Eventually she cites getting funding for high speed rail, which she notes didn’t get done.

Wagner says it’s a tough question but he regrets supporting people who weren’t up to policy challenges. He says some people have disappointed him either in their votes or their personal scandals.

Murray says she trusted staff too much and should have pushed back more when she started on the Council. She says she will stand up for residents for public safety, on the economy, and on homelessness. She regrets contracting out park maintenance, though she has since fixed that.

Bales talks about tech companies being special interests in Washington. (There is snickering in the audience as it repeatedly becomes clear that Bales doesn’t understand most of the questions.)

Pauly cites Murray and says Pauly should have trusted her gut and common sense against City staff. Pauly says Sanchez’s vote on ACA and Wagner’s votes on cemeteries are their failures. The moderator cuts Pauly off.

Moderator asks about the new joint powers authority (JPA) on homelessness.

Wagner warns of JPAs being subject to state pressure, pointing to Sanchez’s union allies. He speaks of various homeless solutions, including shelter beds and mental health programs.

Murray says the JPA was set up by cities to ensure there is funding for local communities for homelessness. She says this will come from local communities up to the JPA, not top down from the State or the JPA.

Bales says homeless shelters should be selectively placed. He wants basketball court-style sheltering.

Pauly opposed the JPA as expanding government. She says homelessness has been hardened. She blamed electeds officials for not taking care of homelessness sooner and now permanent homeless shelters are being imposed on communities. She calls for temporary shelters, like “tent cities.”

Sanchez says it is sad that a federal judge had to intervene. She blasts Anaheim for letting homelessness grow for 2 years. She blasts the proposal to place a homeless shelter at a school in the canyons. she speaks of the need for mental health programs and wraparound services.

Moderator asks about rising hate crimes.

Murray calls hate crimes a tragedy, pointing to faith, lifestyle, and culture. she says she is being attacked by Howard Ahmanson who she says funds hate groups. She says she stands with all diverse communities.

Bales speaks of opposing prejudice and being friends with people of all races.

Pauly speaks of the First Amendment, protecting free speech and freedom of religion. She says the Human Relations Commission is keeping itself busy. She says there are professional victims. She says certain groups are a threat, but scream hate to defend themselves.

Sanchez has been attacked for being a woman, poor, Latina, Christian, and even a Democrat. She says it is important to stand for all people. She calls for increased funding for the Human Relations Commission.

Wagner says the Human Relations Commission fights “yahoos” in the community. He speaks of helping to defend a vandalized synagogue by offering a reward for the “yahoo” who attacked it, and he worked with Christian and Muslim leaders on this.

Moderator asks about making toll roads more profitable.

Bales says developers want toll roads to access their land.

Pauly says transportation, and particularly roads, are a basic function of government. She says the toll roads are empty while freeways are jam packed. She says the toll roads are not profitable and should be free.

Sanchez notes the 73 is not profitable and the 241 barely breaks even. She points to the toll roads pouring on to high-traffic roads. She says there needs to be bigger picture planning.

Wagner cites Sanchez’s arguments and calls for comprehensive solutions for getting people across the county in both emergency and day-to-day situations.

Murray says the toll roads are critical redundancy and will be free once the bonds are paid off. She supports the 91/241 toll road connector which will help organically reduce traffic. She says that the 5 and 57 cannot be further widened.

Moderator asks for residency.

Pauly: Orange

Sanchez: Orange

Wagner: North Irvine

Murray: Anaheim Hills

Bales: Tustin

Moderator asks what drives choices of support, proposals, and votes.

Pauly says there are problems we may not anticipate. She reads all material. She asks staff questions. She does further research. She goes to her outside experts. She emails constituents.

Sanchez seeks out experts. She notes her endorsement by Jim Doti because she always sought Chapman’s expertise. She trusts her gut.

Wagner says it is important to do homework and seek expertise but then run it through principles. He founded the OC chapter of the Federalist Society. He always seeks to increase liberty.

Murray says she is not a politician, but a public servant. She hosted town halls as a Councilwoman to get community input. She works hard and rolls up her sleeves. She seeks long term benefit for the people she serves.

Bales says honesty is his top priority and seeks to make the best decision possible. He wants to represent people not special interests. He says Prop 13 emerged from his work.

Closing statements begin.

Bales says he will represent the people. He believes in honesty and integrity. He has been retaliated against as a whistleblower.

Murray thanks the organizers and attendees. She wants to serve the people, work hard, and be accessible. Her cell phone is on her campaign web site. She cares about results, not rhetoric. She has not attacked any other candidate.

Wagner thanks the organizers and attendees. He came to OC in 1991 and loves this community. The people, not the government, built the community. He will help preserve it. He has the experience to serve this community.

Sanchez will protect the Third District. She will protect public safety and the homeless, both mentally I’ll and opioid-addicted. She notes she brought money back to OC as a Democrat in a Republican controlled Congress. She loves OC as her home and her family’s home.

Pauly speaks of people informing her. She says she is a fighter and scrapper. She says she will be the first line of defense for the people. She says she is the only candidate who put her cell phone and email address in the sample ballot.

The forum concludes at 8:35 PM.

Posted in 3rd Supervisorial District | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

3rd District Supervisor Candidate Forum on Friday with All 7 Candidates

Posted by Newsletter Reprint on February 13, 2019

The Foothill Communities Association has organized a candidate forum for the Third District Supervisor Special Election, with moderators from the League of Women Voters.  The forum is scheduled for Friday evening and is the first (and probably only) time all seven candidates will be at the same forum.  It will be the second forum for front-runners Don Wagner, Loretta Sanchez, and Kris Murray who appeared at a January 31 forum sponsored by the Orange County Public Affairs Association.

Here is the release from FCA and LWV:

Foothill Communities Association and League of Women Voters

Candidates Forum for Third District Supervisor

The seven candidates running to be the next Third District Supervisor in Orange County will participate in a forum to discuss their qualifications and policies. The candidates will also take questions from the audience. This is likely the only opportunity that Third District residents will have to compare all the candidates and have them address their individual specific concerns.

Date and time: Friday, February 15, 2019 at 7pm

Location: Trinity Presbyterian Church (Fellowship Hall)
13922 Prospect Ave, Santa Ana, CA 92705
(corner of Prospect Ave. and 17th St.)

The special election will be on March 12, 2019.

The Third District includes all or parts of Anaheim, Irvine, Orange, Yorba Linda, El Modena, North Tustin, Orange Park Acres, and the Canyon Communities.

The event is organized by the Foothill Communities Association and will be moderated by The League of Women Voters. Both organizations are nonprofit entities and are politically impartial. Neither will endorse candidates.

Check www.FCAhome.org for more details.

Note: the last day to register to vote for this election is February 25, 2019.

For further information contact Richard Nelson
(714) 730-7810 rnelson@FCAhome.org

Posted in 3rd Supervisorial District | Tagged: , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

BOS-3: Seven Candidates Qualify for Special Election Ballot

Posted by Chris Nguyen on January 29, 2019

The field is set, with seven candidates officially qualified for the ballot for the March 12 special election to fill the Third Supervisorial District seat, left vacant when Supervisor Todd Spitzer (R-Orange) was elected District Attorney of Orange County.

Special Election Candidates for the Third Supervisorial District (l-r): Don Wagner, Loretta Sanchez, Kris Murray, Deborah Pauly, Katherine Daigle, Larry Bales, Katie Bayliss

There are 5 women and 2 men: Wagner and Bales.  There are 6 Republicans and 1 Democrat: Sanchez. (It should be noted that Supervisor is a nonpartisan race, so party affiliation does not appear on the ballot, and it’s up to the candidates, political parties, and independent expenditures to inform – or misinform – the voters about the party affiliations.)  Their names are listed below as they will appear on the ballot along their ballot designations, followed by the narrative of their electoral history and representation of portions of the Third District:

  • Donald P. Wagner (R-Irvine)
    Mayor of Irvine

    Elected Mayor in 2016 and re-elected in 2018, he is the only current elected official running for Supervisor.  He presumably has the highest name ID, having represented nearly the entire district in the State Assembly (2010-2016) and the southern half of the district on the South Orange County Community College District Board.  He was the Assemblyman, the Mayor, or both for 85% of the Third Supervisorial District.
  • Loretta Sanchez (D-Orange)
    Educator/Small Businesswoman
    The 20-year Congresswoman (1997-2017) made an ill-fated bid for the United States Senate in 2016, when she was defeated by Kamala Harris in the general election.  She was the Congresswoman for 12% of the Third Supervisorial District.  That 12% overlapped Wagner’s Assembly District.
  • Kristine “Kris” Murray (R-Anaheim)
    Orange County Business Owner
    The former Anaheim Councilwoman (2010-2018) termed out of office two months ago.  She was a Councilwoman for 12% of the Third Supervisorial District.  That 12% overlapped Wagner’s Assembly District.
  • Deborah Pauly (R-Orange)
    Businesswoman
    Seeking higher office for the third time, the former two-term Villa Park Councilwoman (2006-2014) was defeated for Assembly in 2016 and Supervisor in 2012.   She was a Councilwoman for 1% of the Third Supervisorial District.  Her city of Villa Park was entirely in Wagner’s Assembly District, though she now resides in Orange, which is also in Wagner’s Assembly District.
  • Katherine Daigle (R-Irvine)
    Small Business Owner
    A perennial candidate, she made 6 failed bids for elected office: twice for State Assembly (2016 and 2018) and four times for Mayor of Irvine (2012, 2014, 2016, and 2018).  She is also the only candidate in the entire field dumb enough to not get a ballot statement.
  • Larry Bales (R-Tustin)
    Retired
    Seeking County office for the seventh time (or eighth time, depending on how you count it), he is another perennial candidate, with 6 unsuccessful candidacies for County office and 1 failed attempt at an appointment to County office.  He ran for Orange County Recorder in 1986 (before the office was merged with the County Clerk).  He ran for Orange County Assessor in 1990, 1994, 1998, 2002, and 2006.  He sought the appointment to fill the vacancy for Orange County Clerk-Recorder in 2013.
  • Kim-Thy “Katie” Hoang Bayliss (R-Tustin)
    Attorney/Businessowner/Mother
    She is the only candidate in the entire field who has never run for office before.  Awkwardly, she had formerly interned for one of her opponents in this race: Loretta Sanchez.  Bayliss has been registered to vote in Tustin (in the Third District) since December 2018 after having previously been registered to vote in Ladera Ranch (in the Fifth District).  Her husband was still registered to vote in Ladera Ranch as of January 7.

This group of candidates has lost 18 elections combined: 12 of those losses belong to Daigle and Bales.

While Bales is 76 and Bayliss turns 39 just two days before the election, the rest of the candidates are remarkably close in age, as Sanchez, Pauly, and Daigle are all 59, Wagner is 58, and Murray is 51.

Yorba Linda is the unknown neutral zone in the Third Supervisorial District, as none of the seven candidates have ever been elected to anything representing Yorba Linda nor do any of the seven live there.

Below are the ballot statements of each candidate.  I would not be surprised if some of these change, as there are certainly portions that could be challenged in court in some of these ballot statements.

Wagner:

Mayor Don Wagner has a history of getting the job done while being a good steward of taxpayer dollars. He understands how hard we work for every dollar, and he is committed to delivering the best county services at the lowest price.

Don is tough on crime. In the legislature he opposed reducing penalties for sex offenders who prey on children. As Supervisor, he’ll increase funding for law enforcement to help people in high crime areas take back their communities.

Don has a plan to solve the homeless crisis. He’ll make sure our veterans, women, and children never spend a night outside. His plan also provides compassionate treatment options for addicts and the mentally ill.

Don is fiscally responsible. During six years as President of the South Orange County Community College District he balanced every budget and paid off all debt, without raising taxes.

Don is committed to increasing our quality of life. As Irvine Mayor, he enacted a traffic plan to reduce gridlock, improved our park system, and accelerated build out of the Orange County Great Park.

Don’s reasoned, collaborative approach to problem solving is why every mayor in the district supports him. Your vote helps Don Wagner continue working for us.

Don Wagner

www.ElectDonWagner.com

Sanchez:

With over 30 years of government service, infrastructure development, and business expertise, I am highly experienced as a qualified candidate for the Orange County Board of Supervisors, District 3.

I have made Orange County my home for over 55 years and represented us in Congress for 20 years. I graduated from Katella High School, Chapman University (BA, Economics), and American University (MBA).

Named one of the “25 Most Influential Women of Congress” in 2015, I secured billions of federal dollars to widen our freeways, develop our world-class water recycling system, protect our environment, improve healthcare services, and fund research at UCI, Chapman, and Cal State Fullerton. I know how to get more of our tax dollars back to Orange County. As Supervisor, I will continue to work with local, state, and federal officials to make our schools stronger, our streets safer, and housing more affordable.

Since retiring from Congress in 2017, I have been working on solutions to homelessness, raising private funds for a homeless women’s shelter, mentoring candidates for public office, and consulting on business development issues.

I’m running for Supervisor because I have dedicated my life to making Orange County a wonderful place to live and work. Working together, we can achieve our priorities and move Orange County forward.

Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez (retired)

www.sanchezforocsupervisor.com

Murray (the only candidate to list her age in her ballot statement):

AGE: 51

I am running for Orange County Supervisor, with more than two decades of public service to Orange County, where the needs of residents, local businesses and taxpayers always come first.

As Mayor Pro Tem and City Councilwoman: I decreased 911 response times by increasing sworn personnel, neighborhood patrols and firefighting resources, reduced traffic by improving infrastructure, and opened Orange County’s first full-service homeless shelter away from schools and homes while eliminating homeless tent cities/encampments.

As a champion of fiscal responsibility: I balanced city budgets, lowered taxes, doubled cash reserves, authored the Taxpayer Protection Act, defended homeowners’ Prop. 13 protections and kept city and utility fees low, all while expanding transparency at City Hall.

On the economic front: I led efforts to grow thousands of local, high-paying jobs and keep world-champion Angels Baseball and Anaheim Ducks in Orange County.

As Orange County Supervisor, I will immediately get to work to reduce crime and improve wildfire protection, provide significant resources to address homelessness, support traffic-reducing measures and vigorously protect open space, trails and parks.

I’m the candidate endorsed by Orange County Business Council, California Women’s Leadership Association, our local Chamber of Commerce, as well as public safety and community leaders.

I humbly ask for your vote to serve you as Orange County Supervisor and to put our community first.

www.ElectKrisMurray.com

Pauly (the only candidate to purchase a 400-word ballot statement):

I’m running to give voters an independent option as their voice on the Board of Supervisors. Elected officials who are beholden to special interest groups, at either extreme of the political spectrum, do not make decisions furthering the greater good. I am obligated only to the citizens and US Constitution, which I vow to uphold.

I served active duty in the US Air Force in public affairs, where patriotism and civic duty merged into understanding how policy decisions today impact our communities tomorrow.

As a former city councilwoman, I’ve proven myself able and reliable. Local control and protecting the uniqueness in our District are paramount. Therefore, in the following, I support:

Anaheim – directing County traffic engineers to improve traffic flow and relieve bottlenecks. I will demand better fire coordination, improved resources and better planning so we don’t repeat the October 2017 Canyon 2 Fire.

Orange – recognizing the special communities that encompass this great city. From Old Town to Orange Park Acres and myriad barrios in between, diversity is a great part of Orange’s charm worth protecting.

North Tustin – respecting and defending the intent of the Foothill Trabuco Specific Plan, which is the foundation ensuring the special quality of life in our largest unincorporated area.

Irvine and Tustin – resisting future efforts to build overly dense housing on County-owned property. I will block placing homeless shelters near schools or parks.

Yorba Linda – ensuring this gracious city never relives anything like the 2008 Freeway Complex Fire. I will demand any future development on County-zoned property includes a net benefit to existing residents by providing traffic relief, additional fire infrastructure and fire breaks.

Villa Park and Yorba Linda – soliciting their input, as contract cities, prior to approving OC Sheriff’s contracts which heavily impact their budgets.

Irvine Lake – it is an outrage that this recreational jewel has been closed to the public due to infighting. I will bring the parties together to reopen this asset for the community’s enjoyment.

Finally, I support a Veterans’ Cemetery in our District.

Accessibility has always been a hallmark of my public service. I genuinely enjoy hearing from constituents, getting to know them and understanding what concerns them. I have lived in the 3rd District for two decades. The best ideas come from voters. Together, we can Make Orange County Great, Again!

I humbly ask for your vote. I consider it a sacred trust. DeborahPauly@gmail.com (714) 394-8400

Daigle:

(No ballot statement)

Bales:

I am a Viet Nam Veteran; my family has served in every United States conflict including the Revolutionary War of Independence.

While working for the County of Orange, I exposed political corruption and unfair treatment of taxpayers that eventually resulted in 45 indictments and 45 convictions of corrupted elected officials. Among them, a Congressman, the first one to be removed from Congress since the Civil War. My efforts, in stopping unfair and illegal property tax practices, directly contributed to the passage of Proposition 13. I support Prop 13.

I am against the “split roll” property tax being proposed. It will raise your taxes. Our commercial and industrial business community already suffers from unfair competition and are either moving out of state or going out of business. Lost jobs.

I continue to be concerned about our election process and in 2016 exposed and brought forward election fraud charges against your former Assessor Webster Guillory, resulting in 5 election felony charges.

I have not and will not accept Special Interest money or untraceable Dark Money from Special Interest.

Special Interest and Dark Money corrupts your representation to the point where, “We the people,” no longer exists.

I support legal immigration and election laws.

Bayliss:

Having someone who represents your values on the Board is critical. I know my decisions as Supervisor will impact real people of Orange County and I take this responsibility seriously.

I believe money belongs to the people who earn it. If you produce it, you should keep more of it. That’s why I oppose higher taxes. I know putting money back into the hands of people who buy goods and create jobs stimulates economic growth.

I believe in the free market where low prices are a result of fair and open competition. As an attorney and Supervisor, I will be open to receiving bids and reviewing them diligently to find the best prices and options.

I will get involved and not look at an issue from the outside. To better understand homelessness, I personally surveyed the homeless population to better assess their needs and gain an inside perspective on how funds should be allocated.

I believe in a fiscally responsible government. With my financial industry experience, I will work to keep the County debt down and ensure our budget is balanced.

I believe in protecting our children with communities of low crime, excellent schools, and clean parks.

Visit me at voteforkatiebayliss.com.

Posted in 3rd Supervisorial District | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

OC’s Five Vacant Seats

Posted by Chris Nguyen on January 8, 2019

As a result of the November 2018 elections, there are currently five vacant seats in Orange County.  Here’s a quick run-down on the five vacancies:

  • OC Supervisor, Third District
  • Fullerton City Council
  • Orange City Council
  • Seal Beach City Council, District 1*
  • Santa Ana Unified School District Board of Education

*Seal Beach is not actually a vacancy, but there is an election this month (see below)

OC Supervisor, Third District – March 12 Special Election

The highest profile vacancy in Orange County is indisputably the Third District seat on the Board of Supervisors, which Todd Spitzer vacated when he was sworn in as District Attorney yesterday.  The special election has been called for March 12, with candidate filing closing on January 28.  There is no run-off, so whoever wins the plurality of the vote in this election will be Third District Supervisor through the remainder of Spitzer’s unexpired term that lasts until January 2021.  The seat would be up for election again in 2020 for a full four-year term lasting from January 2021-January 2025.  Since the new Supervisor would be filling less than half of Spitzer’s unexpired term, that person could hold the seat for nearly ten years before finally being term limited in the 2028 election.

Declared candidates so far are Irvine Mayor Don Wagner (R), former Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez (D), and former Anaheim Councilwoman Kris Murray (R).  Between his Assembly and Mayoral tenures, Wagner has represented 85% of the Third Supervisorial District’s registered voters, the entire district outside of Yorba Linda.  In Congress, Sanchez represented 12% of the Third Supervisorial District.  On the City Council, Murray represented 12% of the Third Supervisorial District.

Wagner was last on the Assembly ballot in 2014, but he has since been on the Mayoral ballot in both 2016 and 2018 in the 37% of the Third District that is the City of Irvine.  Sanchez was last on the ballot for the House of Representatives in 2014, though she did have an ill-fated run for US Senate in 2016, which of course included 100% of the district since it was a statewide race.  Murray was last on the City Council ballot in 2014.

Here are the latest campaign finance numbers for each of the three:

  • Wagner had $35,868 in his Mayoral campaign account as of the October 20 campaign finance report filed with the Irvine City Clerk.  What isn’t shown is how much of this he spent between October 20 and November 6 since he was in a campaign for re-election as Mayor, as that campaign finance report is not due until the end of January.
  • Sanchez had $18,384 in her Congressional campaign account and $18,344 in her US Senate campaign account, as of the September 30 campaign finance report filed with the Federal Election Commission.
  • Murray had $316 in her City Council campaign account as of the June 30 campaign finance report filed with the Anaheim City Clerk.  She had $886 in her Supervisorial campaign account as of the June 30 campaign finance report filed with the Orange County Registrar of Voters.

Wagner and Sanchez’s state campaign accounts have all long been closed.  Neither of their Supervisorial campaign accounts have been open long enough to file campaign finance reports.

Wagner and Murray have each issued December press releases declaring that they have more than $100,000 in their Supervisorial campaign finance accounts.  The next campaign finance reports are due later this month.

Fullerton City Council

In Fullerton, an at-large Council seat was vacated when Jesus Silva (D) was sworn in to the Council seat for District 3 on December 4.  The City Council may either fill the seat by appointment or special election.  It requires 3 votes of the 4 remaining members of the Council to act.  Whether elected or appointed, this person would fill the at-large Council seat for the remainder of Silva’s unexpired term through 2020.  The at-large Council seat will no longer exist after 2020, as it will be replaced by a District Council seat.

At their December 18 meeting, the Council deadlocked 2-2 on whether to make an appointment or hold a special election.  Mayor Silva (D) and Mayor Pro Tem Jennifer Fitzgerald (R) voted to make an appointment while Councilmen Bruce Whitaker (R) and Ahmad Zahra (D) voted for a special election.  They will consider the issue again on January 15.  Even if the Council does opt to make an appointment, they must reach 3 votes on who the appointee is in order to actually do so.  If the Council fails to make an appointment by February 2 (sixty days after the initial vacancy), then it automatically goes to a special election.

Regardless of whether the City Council actively chose to call a special election or simply failed to make an appointment by February 2, a special election would take place on either August 27, 2019 or November 5, 2019, under the statutory dates available to Fullerton.

Orange City Council

In Orange, a City Council seat was vacated when Councilman Mark A. Murphy (R) was sworn in as Mayor on December 11.  As in Fullerton, the Orange City Council may either fill the seat by appointment or special election, and it requires 3 votes of the 4 remaining members on the Council to act.  Whether elected or appointed, this person would fill the Council seat through the remainder of Murphy’s unexpired term through 2020, at which point the Councilmember would be up for election for a full four-year term.

City staff in Orange proactively solicited applications for the vacancy, and 10 people have submitted them.  The application process is not mandatory, and the City Council is not limited to considering those 10 applicants nor is it limited to an appointment.

At its meeting this evening, the Orange City Council will consider whether to make an appointment or hold a special election.  Even if the Council does opt to make an appointment, they must reach 3 votes on who the appointee is in order to actually do so.  If the Council fails to make an appointment by February 9 (sixty days after the initial vacancy), then it automatically goes to a special election.

Regardless of whether the City Council actively chose to call a special election or simply failed to make an appointment by February 9, a special election would take place on November 5, 2019, the only statutory date available to Orange.

Seal Beach City Council, District 1 – January 29 Run-Off Election

In Seal Beach, there isn’t actually a vacancy, but rather, the Seal Beach City Charter requires a January run-off when no candidate receives more than 50% of the vote in the prior November election.

There is January 29 run-off election between Small Businessman Peter Amundson (R) and Retired Business Owner Joe Kalmick (D) for the District 1 Council seat.  District 1 Councilwoman Ellery Deaton (R) continues in office until the run-off election is certified.  Eight years ago when Deaton was first elected, she too had to go to a run-off election—against none other than Kalmick.

Republicans have a 7% registration advantage in Seal Beach District 1.  The Registrar of Voters began sending out ballots for this election on New Year’s Eve, so ballots started arriving in voters’ mailboxes on January 2.

Santa Ana Unified School District

The lone Republican on the Santa Ana Unified School District Board of Education, Ceci Iglesias (R), was elected to be the lone Republican on the Santa Ana City Council when she won the District 6 seat, to which she was sworn in on December 11.

At its December 11 meeting, the Santa Ana School Board directed their staff to open an application process to enable the School Board to fill the seat by appointment.  The School Board will meet this evening to conduct the first round of applicant interviews.  They plan to meet again on January 15 to interview the finalists and make the appointment.  They must reach 3 votes on one of the applicants to actually make the appointment.

If the School Board fails to make an appointment by February 9 (sixty days after the initial vacancy), then it automatically goes to a special election.

With a School Board appointment, unlike a City Council appointment, a petition of 1.5% of the registered voters of the school district can overturn the appointment and force a special election.  The petition must be submitted within 30 days of the appointment.  In this case, if anyone objects to the person appointed on January 15, they have until February 14 to submit a petition of 1,223 registered voters in the Santa Ana Unified School District to overturn the appointment and force a special election.  If this were to occur, the appointee would vacate the seat upon certification of the petition, and that person would not be entitled to incumbent status on the special election ballot.

Posted in 3rd Supervisorial District, Fullerton, Orange, Santa Ana Unified School District, Seal Beach | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

OC’s Top 10 Stories From the November 2018 General Election

Posted by Chris Nguyen on November 7, 2018

Here’s a quick look at the top 10 stories of the 2018 general election in Orange County:

  1. OC Congressional Delegation Now Consists of Five Democrats and Two Republicans
    In a political earthquake for Orange County, the 4-3 Republican majority in OC’s Congressional delegation is now a 5-2 Democratic majority.  The three senior members of the delegation are leaving Congress: Dana Rohrabacher (elected 1988), Ed Royce (elected 1992), and Darrell Issa (elected 2000); all three are Republicans and only Royce will be succeeded by a member of his own party.  While Royce and Issa both announced their retirements earlier this year, Rohrabacher has been defeated for re-election by businessman Harley Rouda (D-Laguna Beach).  Royce will be succeeded by former Assemblywoman Young Kim (R-Fullerton) while Issa will be succeeded by Clean Energy Advocate Mike Levin (D-San Juan Capistrano).  While Board of Equalization Member Diane Harkey (R-Dana Point) defeated Levin in Orange County, her undoing was Levin’s strong lead in San Diego County.  The three most senior members of the OC delegation are now Linda Sanchez (elected 2002), Alan Lowenthal (elected 2012), and Mimi Walters (elected 2014).  In a House of Representatives ruled by seniority, the OC delegation is severely lacking in seniority.
  2. Democrats’ Assembly Supermajority Hinges on Whether Matthew Harper Survives
    Orange County’s 5-2 Republican delegation could fall to being a 4-3 Republican delegation if Assemblyman Matthew Harper (R-Huntington Beach) is unable to hold his narrow lead over Small Business Owner Cottie Petrie-Norris (D-Laguna Beach).  Harper’s defeat would produce a Democratic supermajority in the State Assembly to go along with the Democratic supermajority in the State Senate (Democrats captured a Republican-held State Senate seat in the Central Valley last night).  Harper leads Petrie-Norris by 672 votes out of 120,164 votes cast, or 0.6%.  Late absentee ballots and provisional ballots have not yet been counted and most certainly could flip the lead.
  3. District Attorney-Elect Todd Spitzer
    For what appears to be the first time in Orange County history, a sitting District Attorney has been defeated for re-election.  20-Year District Attorney Tony Rackauckas (R) has been defeated for re-election by Orange County Supervisor Todd Spitzer (R).  Spitzer’s election also creates a special election in the Third Supervisorial District.  Spitzer’s victory was so sweeping that he leads in 27 of Orange County’s 34 cities, winning everywhere except Little Saigon and the northern beach cities.
  4. Tim Shaw Leads, But Fourth District Supervisor is Too Close to Call
    La Habra Mayor Tim Shaw (R) leads Fullerton Mayor Doug Chaffee (D) by just 1,610 votes out of 87,404 votes cast.  Chaffee won the Fourth District’s three largest cities, Anaheim, Fullerton, and Buena Park, but Shaw ran up the total in his wins in the three smallest cities, La Habra, Placentia, and Brea, particularly with the landslide in his own city of La Habra.  There are still an enormous number of late absentee ballots and provisional ballots that could still change the result in this seat.
  5. Assemblyman-Elect Tyler Diep
    In the race to succeed Assemblyman Travis Allen (R-Huntington Beach), Westminster Councilman Tyler Diep (R) defeated FreeConferenceCall.com CEO Josh Lowenthal (D-Huntington Beach) to retain this Assembly seat for Republicans.  Diep’s concurrent service with Senator Janet Nguyen (R-Garden Grove) makes California the first state ever with two Vietnamese-Americans serving in the State Legislature at the same time.
  6. Mayor-Elect Harry Sidhu and the New Anaheim Council Majority
    Anaheim voters delivered a new majority on their City Council.  Former Anaheim Councilman Harry Sidhu (R) was elected Mayor of Anaheim last night.  Businessman Trevor O’Neil (R) won the open Council seat in Anaheim Hills.  Former Councilman Jordan Brandman (D) defeated Councilman James Vanderbilt (R) in West Anaheim’s District 2 seat.  Councilman Jose Moreno (D) won re-election in Central Anaheim’s District 3 seat.
  7. Newport Beach Ousts Two Incumbents, Ending Council Majority
    While Councilmembers Diane Dixon (R) and Kevin Muldoon (R) won landslide re-elections, Councilman Scott Peotter (R) was defeated by Businesswoman Joy Brenner (R), and Councilman Duffy Duffield (R) is narrowly losing to Businessman Tim Stoaks (R).  With Peotter’s defeat and Duffield’s probable defeat, Newport Beach’s Council majority comes to an end.
  8. Lake Forest Sweep
    In a sweeping rebuke of incivility, Lake Forest voters elected Neeki Moatazedi (R) decisively over Sonny Morper (R) and elected former Councilman Mark Tettemer (R) to oust Mayor Jim Gardner (R) from office.  Moatazedi and Tettemer join Councilman Scott Voigts (R), who was unopposed for re-election when his opponent failed to qualify for the ballot, and Councilman Dwight Robinson (R) in a new 4-1 supermajority of civility.  Just ten months after the recall of Councilman Drew Hamilton (R) in which former Councilman Adam Nick’s allies won a 3-2 majority on the City Council, the voters have not only reversed the Nick majority but reduced down to 1 seat (which will be up for election in 2020).  A key turning point in the campaign came when Nick’s side sent a mailer so disgusting that multiple TV channels covered it, for it was so sexist that it called Moatazedi a “bikini model” and made up three fictional criminal record numbers with a photo of an inmate falsely implying that it was Moatazedi.  That mailer backfired into not only the media coverage but also campaign money and independent expenditures to oust Nick’s allies from the Council.
  9. Irvine’s New Councilmembers
    For the first time in 14 years, no incumbent Irvine Councilmember sought re-election (though Mayor Don Wagner (R) was re-elected last night).  Planning Commissioner Anthony Kuo (R) is the top vote getter while Businesswoman Farrah Khan (D) and Transportation Commissioner Carrie O’Malley (R) are neck-and-neck for the second Council seat, with Khan ahead by 389 votes, or 0.5%.
  10. Santa Ana Councilwoman-Elect Ceci Iglesias
    For the first time in a decade, Santa Ana citizens voted to elect a Republican to their City Council, with School Board Member Ceci Iglesias winning the Ward 6 seat by a decisive margin.  (The last Republican on the Santa Ana Council, Carlos Bustamante, was re-elected in 2008 to a term ending in 2012.)  Iglesias’s election creates a vacancy on the Santa Ana Unified School District Board, which will be filled by appointment.

Honorable Mention

  • There’s a New Sheriff in Town
    While it was widely expected that Undersheriff Don Barnes (R) would be elected Sheriff of Orange County, it’s always a major news story when there’s a new Sheriff.  Barnes decisively defeated Los Angeles County District Attorney Investigator Duke Nguyen (D) with 57% of the vote.

Upcoming News Story Due to Last Night’s Results

  • Race for Third District Supervisor
    With the election of Supervisor Todd Spitzer as District Attorney of Orange County, an early 2019 special election will take place to fill the remaining two years on Spitzer’s Supervisorial term.  Retiring Anaheim Councilwoman Kris Murray (R) and Businessman Andy Thorburn (D) have already announced for Spitzer’s Supervisorial seat.  Thorburn spent millions in his unsuccessful bid in the primary election for the 39th Congressional District.  Other early rumored candidates include Irvine Mayor Don Wagner (R), former Irvine Mayor Sukhee Kang (D), and Yorba Linda Councilwoman Peggy Huang (R).

(In the interest of full disclosure, Western American, the company that owns OC Political, serves as the political consultants for Sidhu, O’Neil, Voigts, Moatazedi, and Tettemer, as well as doing secondary consultant work for Kuo.  Additionally, this blogger is Spitzer’s alternate on the Central Committee of the Republican Party of Orange County.)

Posted in 39th Congressional District, 45th Congressional District, 48th Congressional District, 49th Congressional District, 4th Supervisorial District, 72nd Assembly District, 74th Assembly District, Anaheim, Irvine, Lake Forest, Newport Beach, Orange County District Attorney's Office, Orange County Sheriff, Santa Ana Unified School District | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Freedom Foundation Hires Sam Han as California Director

Posted by Newsletter Reprint on January 27, 2017

As initially reported by our media partner OC Daily, the press release below came over the wire earlier this week from the Freedom Foundation announcing their hiring of Sam Han, who recently finished a term on the Fullerton Planning Commission and who was also formerly District Director to Assemblyman Don Wagner (until Wagner termed out of the Legislature and became Mayor of Irvine)…

ORANGE COUNTY, Calif. – The Freedom Foundation announced today that Sam Han has joined its leadership team to guide the organization’s latest expansion to California.

Han will serve as California director, ensuring local and state governments are accountable to the voters rather than public-sector unions. Specifically, he will work to free government employees from union tyranny and provide guidance to legislators and citizens on ways to combat union influence.

“We’re pleased that Sam decided to join our team. He has the skills necessary to quickly advance our mission in California,” said Tom McCabe, Freedom Foundation CEO.

As a California native, Han has been involved in local, state and federal races and previously worked for the California State Legislature as a district director.

He is a graduate of UC San Diego and holds a business certificate from the Harvard Business School.

The Freedom Foundation is a 501c(3) nonprofit think and action tank with offices in Washington, Oregon and California.

Founded in 1991 by Bob Williams and Lynn Harsh as the Evergreen Freedom Foundation, the Oregon today is a national leader in winning the fight for freedom at the state and local level.
The Freedom Foundation is working to reverse the stranglehold public-sector unions have on government. There is no path to expanded freedom, opportunity or prosperity until collective bargaining is transparent, government employees have a choice to join an employee’s union or not, and taxpayer’s money is prohibited from being unwillingly used to influence the political system. The Freedom Foundation has the will and skill to take on those who attack freedom.

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OC GOP Endorsements So Far

Posted by Chris Nguyen on September 1, 2016

wpid-ocgop-logo-1_400x400.jpgThe Republican Party of Orange County Central Committee met on August 15 and August 31 to consider endorsements for local offices and ballot measures. Further endorsements will take place on September 19 (and possibly more after that).

OC Political live-blogged the August 15 meeting and the August 31 meeting, but by popular demand here is the list of endorsements so far:

  • City Councils and Mayors
    • Aliso Viejo City Council: Mike Munzing
    • Anaheim City Council, District 4: Lucille Kring
    • Anaheim City Council, District 5: Mark Lopez
    • Costa Mesa City Council: Allan Mansoor, Steve Mensinger, Lee Ramos
    • Dana Point City Council: Michelle Brough
    • Fountain Valley City Council: Steve Nagel
    • Fullerton City Council: Larry Bennett, Bruce Whitaker
    • Garden Grove Mayor: Steve Jones
    • Huntington Beach City Council: Patrick Brenden, Joe Carchio, Lyn Semeta
    • Irvine Mayor: Don Wagner
    • Irvine City Council: Anthony Kuo, Christina Shea
    • La Habra City Council: Tom Beamish, Dawn Holthouser, Tim Shaw
    • Laguna Hills City Council: Janine Heft
    • Laguna Niguel City Council: Laurie Davies, John Mark Jennings, Jerry Slusiewicz
    • Lake Forest City Council: Francisco Barajas, Dwight Robinson
    • Los Alamitos City Council: Dean Grose
    • Newport Beach City Council, District 5: Lee Lowrey
    • Newport Beach City Council, District 7: Will O’Neill
    • Orange City Council: Mark Murphy
    • Rancho Santa Margarita City Council: Tony Beall, Carol Gamble
    • San Clemente City Council: Dan Bane
    • Tustin City Council: Allan Bernstein, Austin Lumbard, Charles Puckett
    • Westminster City Council: Kimberly Ho
    • Yorba Linda City Council: Tara Campbell, Gene Hernandez, Craig Young
  • College Districts
    • North Orange County Community College District, Trustee Area 7: Ryan Bent
    • Rancho Santiago Community College District, Trustee Area 5: Steven Nguyen
  • School Districts
    • Capistrano Unified School District, Trustee Area 1: Wendy Shrove
    • Capistrano Unified School District, Trustee Area 2: Jim Reardon
    • Capistrano Unified School District, Trustee Area 3: Laura Ferguson
    • Capistrano Unified School District, Trustee Area 5: Jake Vollebregt
    • Santa Ana Unified School District: Angie Cano
  • Water Districts
    • Orange County Water District, Division 6: Cathy Green
    • Mesa Water District, Division 2: James R. Fisler
    • Moulton Niguel Water District, Division 6: Duane Cave
    • Yorba Linda Water District: Ric Collett, Andy Hall
    • No on the Yorba Linda Water District Recall of Directors Bob Kiley and Gary Melton
  • Ballot Measures
    • No on Measure J – Anaheim Elementary School District $318 Million Facilities Bond
    • No on Measure K – Brea-Olinda Unified School District $148 Million Facilities Bond
    • No on Measure M – Capistrano Unified School District $889 Million Facilities Bond
    • No on Measure N – Centralia Elementary School District $49 Million Facilities Bond
    • No on Measure O – Fountain Valley School District $63 Million Facilities Bond
    • No on Measure P – Garden Grove Unified School District $311 Million Facilities Bond
    • No on Measure Q – Huntington Beach City School District $159.85 Million Facilities Bond
    • No on Measure R – Ocean View School District $169 Million Facilities Bond
    • No on Measure S – Orange Unified School District $288 Million Facilities Bond
    • No on Measure T – Westminster School District $76 Million Facilities Bond
    • Yes on Measure U – Anaheim 2/3 Vote of the Council to Propose Taxes (Instead of Simple Majority)
    • No on Measure Y ­ Costa Mesa initiative to amend Municipal Code to require voter approval of certain changes in land use, retroactive to July 17, 2015
    • No on Measure HH – Fountain Valley 1% Sales Tax Increase (from 8% to 9%)
    • No on Measure JJ – La Palma 1% Sales Tax Increase (from 8% to 9%)
    • No on Measure LL – Laguna Beach 2% Hotel Tax Increase (from 10% to 12%)
    • Yes on Measure MM – Newport Beach 5/7 Vote of the Council to Propose Taxes (Instead of Simple Majority)
    • No on Measure OO – San Clemente 3% Hotel Tax Increase (from 10% to 13%)
    • No on Measure PP – Santa Ana 700% Pay Raise for City Council (from $125/mtg to $1000/mo for Council and $200/mtg to $1000/mo for Mayor)
    • Yes on Measure QQ – Stanton 1% Sales Tax Repeal (from 9% to 8%)
    • No on Measure SS – Westminster 1% Sales Tax Increase (from 8% to 9%)

Posted in Aliso Viejo, Anaheim, Anaheim City School District, Brea Olinda Unified School District, Capistrano Unified School District, Centralia School District, Costa Mesa, Dana Point, Fountain Valley, Fountain Valley School District, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Garden Grove Unified School District, Huntington Beach, Huntington Beach City School District, Irvine, La Habra, La Palma, Laguna Beach, Laguna Hills, Laguna Niguel, Lake Forest, Los Alamitos, Mesa Consolidated Water District, Moulton-Niguel Water District, Newport Beach, Ocean View School District, Orange, Orange County Water District, Orange Unified School District, Rancho Santa Margarita, San Clemente, Santa Ana, Santa Ana Unified School District, Stanton, Tustin, Westminster, Westminster School District, Yorba Linda, Yorba Linda Water District | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments »