Posted by Chris Nguyen on March 15, 2017
Yesterday afternoon, State Senate Republicans in Sacramento unanimously elected Senator Pat Bates (R-Laguna Niguel) as the new Senate Republican Leader, effective April 12. Senate Republican Leader Jean Fuller (R-Bakersfield) is stepping down as leader since she will term out of the Senate in 2018.
In the caucus statement announcing her election, Bates said, “It is no secret that Republicans face a challenging political environment in California. But Republicans embrace taxpayers who want a more efficient government, parents who want better schools and safer streets, and citizens who want their constitutional freedoms protected. That is a Republican Party that can attract broad support in California, and I will do everything I can as the next leader to spread that message in every part of the state.”
Prior to her election to the Senate in 2014, Bates was an Orange County Supervisor from 2007-2014 (serving as Chair in 2009 and Vice Chair in 2008 and 2013-2014), a State Assemblywoman from 1996-2004, and on the Laguna Niguel City Council from 1989-1998, including serving as the City’s first mayor after leading the city’s incorporation efforts (she would serve four terms as mayor). A South Orange County resident for 40 years, she worked as a social worker in Los Angeles County before embarking on a political career. During her tenure in the Legislature, she has served as Vice Chair of the Appropriations Committee in both houses. She has also been Vice Chair of the Assembly Health Committee and the Senate Business, Professions, and Economic Development Committee.
Bates is the first South Orange County resident to lead a party caucus in the State Legislature. She is also the first former Orange County Supervisor to serve as a legislative party caucus leader (Bill Campbell was Assembly Republican Leader before he became an Orange County Supervisor.
Serving as the Republican Leader’s chief of staff is not an unfamiliar position for Kevin Bassett, Bates’s chief of staff. Bassett had been selected for the role in 2010 by new Senate Republican Leader Bob Dutton and continued in that position when Bob Huff became Leader in 2012, departing in December 2014 when he became Bates’s chief of staff. Bassett had been on the late Senator Dave Cox’s staff for Cox’s entire political career in the Senate, the Assembly, and the Sacramento County Board of Supervisors. He was Cox’s chief of staff during his entire tenure in the Legislature, including when Cox served as Assembly Republican Leader (2001-2004), and the latter part of his time on the Board of Supervisors.
Fuller is the first woman to head a Senate party caucus while Bates will be the second. No woman has yet led the Senate Democratic Caucus. (While Gloria Romero and Ellen Corbett have served as State Senate Majority Leader, from 2005-2008 and 2010-2014, respectively, that position is the second-ranking position in the Democratic Caucus behind the Senate President Pro Tem, who has always been a man.) Three women have served as Speaker of the State Assembly (Republican-Elected-Speaker-by-Democrats-Until-She-Was-Recalled-by-Orange-County-Voters Doris Allen in 1995, followed by Democrat Karen Bass from 2008-2010 and Democrat Toni Atkins from 2014-2016) and three have served as Assembly Republican Leader (Carol Hallett from 1979-1981, Connie Conway from 2010-2014, and Kristen Olsen from 2014-2016).
Bates is the first Orange County legislator since Senator Bob Huff (Fuller’s predecessor from 2012-2015) to serve as the head of a party caucus in either house of the Legislature and the first Orange County resident to do so since Dick Ackerman was Senate Republican Leader from 2004-2008 (while Huff’s district included Orange County, he is a resident of Los Angeles County). An Orange County legislator has not served as Assembly Republican Leader since Bill Campbell in 2000-2001 or Speaker of the Assembly since Curt Pringle in 1996.
While multiple Orange County residents have served as Senate Republican Leader, Assembly Republican Leader, and Speaker of the State Assembly in recent times, none has ever served as President Pro Tem of the State Senate. However, Republican R. B. Carpenter of Los Angeles County represented both LA and Orange Counties when he served as Senate President Pro Tem from 1892-1893. For Bates to become Senate President Pro Tem, she would need to grow her caucus by 61% or somehow get 30% of the Democratic Caucus to vote for her.
Posted in 36th Senate District, California, State Senate | Tagged: Bill Campbell, Bob Dutton, Bob Huff, Carol Hallett, Connie Conway, Curt Pringle, Dave Cox, Dick Ackerman, Doris Allen, Ellen Corbett, Gloria Romero, Jean Fuller, Karen Bass, Kevin Bassett, Kristen Olsen, Pat Bates, Patricia Bates, R. B. Carpenter, Toni Atkins | Leave a Comment »
Posted by Chris Nguyen on May 29, 2012
Local recalls in California, 1995-2010
There has been much talk about the chances of the Fullerton recalls passing in the press, on other blogs, and even a little here and here on this blog. (It is recalls, plural, by the way, since it’s technically three recalls in Fullerton on next week’s ballot, one each regarding Don Bankhead, Dick Jones, and Pat McKinley.)
I found an interesting study of local election data from California State University, Sacramento.
(All recalls in this post refer to recalls that qualified for the ballot. Recalls that failed to qualify for the ballot are excluded because they are not relevant.)
According to the CSUS study, in an average year in California, there are 16 local recalls, of which 66% result in the officeholder being recalled from office. Specifically, there are 2 county-level recalls, 7 city-level recalls, and 7 school district-level recalls in an average year.
The CSUS data shows that from 1995-2010, there were 256 local recalls, of which 175 recalled the elected official and 81 officeholders hung on to defeat the recall election (a 68% removal rate). Specifically, there were:
- 35 county-level recalls, in which 24 resulted in the recall of the official and 11 officeholders hung on (a 69% removal rate)
- 116 city-level recalls, in which 80 resulted in the recall of the official and 36 officeholders hung on (a 69% removal rate)
- 105 school district-level recalls, in which 65 resulted in the recall of the official and 40 officeholders hung on (a 62% removal rate)
Outside the timeframe of the study, 9 out of 9 city councilmembers subject to recall elections were recalled in 2011. This bumps city-level recalls to a 71% removal rate for 1995-2011. 4 out of 4 school board members defeated their recall elections in 2011, dropping the school district-level recalls to a 60% removal rate for 1995-2011. There were no county-level recalls that qualified for the ballot in California in 2011. The overall rate for all local California recalls for 1995-2011 remains at 68%, the same rate as for 1995-2010.
Narrowing it down to even years (i.e. regular election years):
- 8 out of 16 county-level recalls succeeded (a 50% removal rate)
- 55 out of 79 city-level recalls succeeded (a 70% removal rate)
- 32 out of 43 school district-level recalls succeeded (a 74% removal rate)
The above numbers are statewide. Looking closer to home, no Orange County recall has failed since 1996.
- 2010: Capistrano Unified School District
Mike Winsten was recalled 61.4%-38.6% and replaced with John Alpay.
Ken Maddox was recalled 61.3%-38.7% and replaced with Gary Pritchard.
- 2010: Mission Viejo
Lance McLean was recalled by a 50.1%-49.9% and replaced with Dave Leckness.
- 2008: Capistrano Unified School District
Marlene Draper was recalled 69.3%-30.7% and replaced with Sue Palazzo.
Sheila Benecke was recalled 69.4%-30.6% and replaced with Ken Maddox, who would ironically be recalled himself in 2010.
- 2003: Santa Ana Unified School District
Nativo Lopez was recalled 69.3%-30.7% and replaced with Rob Richardson.
- 2001: Orange Unified School District
Martin Jacobson was recalled 51.5%-48.5% and replaced with Melissa Taylor Smith.
Maureen Aschoff was recalled 50.9%-49.1% and replaced with John Ortega.
Linda Davis was recalled 51.3%-48.7% and replaced with Kathy Moffat.
- 1996: Dana Point
Karen Lloreda defeated a recall effort by a 50.6%-49.4% margin.
Harold Kaufman defeated a recall effort.
- 1995: Cypress
Cecilia Age, Gail Kerry, and Walter Bowman defeated their recalls by a 2-1 margin.
- Not a local recall per se, but in 1995 in Orange County:
Assemblywoman Doris Allen was recalled 65.2%-34.8% and replaced with Scott Baugh.
Outside the timeframe of the study:
- In 1994, the voters of Fullerton recalled Councilmembers Don Bankhead, Buck Catlin, and Molly McClanahan, by 52%-48% margins but left the then-elected City Clerk Anne York in office. Five months after the recall, Bankhead won a new election to the council where he has remained ever since and is now subject to a recall election next week. If recalled next week, Bankhead would likely be the first person since the inception of the recall ever to be recalled from the same office twice.
- In 1989, the voters of Fountain Valley recalled Councilman Fred Voss by a 2-1 margin after he pleaded guilty to a misdemeanor for solicitation after he offered $20 to a prostitute, who was actually an undercover police officer.
(In the interest of full disclosure, I should note my day job is working in the Fullerton office of Assemblyman Chris Norby, who served on the Fullerton City Council from 1984-2002, but he was not a target of the 1994 recall. One of my co-workers in the office is Fullerton City Councilman Bruce Whitaker, who was elected in 2010 and is not a target of the 2012 recall, but he was one of the organizers of the 1994 recall.)
Posted in California, Capistrano Unified School District, Cypress, Dana Point, Fountain Valley, Fullerton, Mission Viejo, Orange County, Orange Unified School District, Santa Ana Unified School District | Tagged: Buck Catlin, Cecilia Age, Dave Leckness, Dick Jones, Don Bankhead, Doris Allen, Fred Voss, Fullerton Recall, Gail Kerry, Gary Pritchard, Harold Kaufman, John Alpay, John Ortega, Karen Lloreda, Kathy Moffat, Ken Maddox, Lance McLean, Linda Davis, Marlene Draper, Martin Jacobson, Maureen Aschoff, Melissa Taylor Smith, Mike Winsten, Molly McClanahan, Nativo Lopez, Pat McKinley, recall, Scott Baugh, Sheila Benecke, Sue Palazzo, Walter Bowman | 1 Comment »