OC Political

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Posts Tagged ‘Paco Barragan’

AD-69: Anaheim Saved Republican Moreno, Pushed Democrat Perez into Third, Averting Dem vs. Dem Slugfest in November

Posted by Chris Nguyen on June 28, 2012

Last week, I blogged two city-by-city breakdowns of the results in two Assembly races.

First up was AD-72, which showed Mayor Troy Edgar (R-Los Alamitos) and Businessman Travis Allen (R-Huntington Beach) the top two in four cities, OC Board of Education Member Long Pham (R-Fountain Valley) and Planning Commissioner Joe Dovinh (D-Garden Grove) the top two in two cities, and Pham and Edgar the top two in Garden Grove.

Next up was AD-74, which showed Assemblyman Allan Mansoor (R-Costa Mesa) and Businessman Robert Rush (D-Newport Beach) alternating as first and second place in each city in the district, with the sole exception being Newport Beach, where Councilwoman Leslie Daigle (R-Newport Beach) slipped in ahead of Rush but behind Mansoor.

Up today is the final OC Assembly race that featured more than two candidates: AD-69.  First, let’s recall the districtwide numbers:

Orange County Clerk-Recorder Tom Daly (D) 10,939 39.2%
Eligibility Technician Jose “Joe” Moreno (R) 5,980 21.4%
Union Leader Julio Perez (D) 5,738 20.6%
Santa Ana Councilwoman Michele Martinez (D) 4,651 16.7%
Businessman Francisco “Paco” Barragan (D) 605 2.2%

So let’s take a look at how the voting broke down in the four cities of AD-69: Santa Ana, Anaheim, Garden Grove, and Orange.

(Thanks to Matt Rexroad and Chandra Sharma at Meridian Pacific for the map, which I’ve cropped here and to which I have added graphics.  Note that the population numbers on the map apply to each whole city, not just the portion of the city in AD-69.  The bulk of Santa Ana and a sliver of Garden Grove are in AD-69 while a sliver of Santa Ana and the bulk of Garden Grove are in AD-72.  A sliver of Orange is in AD-69 but the bulk of it is in AD-68.  Anaheim is divided into nearly even thirds, with the western 1/3 in AD-65, the central 1/3 in AD-69, and the eastern 1/3 in AD-68.)

Daly was consistently first in each city while Barragan was consistently fifth.  Moreno, Perez, and Martinez swapped around for the second, third, and fourth place positions.  The humongous Daly head is indicative of his first place finish in all four cities; taking his head out of the individual cities allows us to more closely examine second and third place, which actually differed in the four cities.  In each individual city, the candidate with the larger head came in second while the candidate with the smaller head came in third:

  • Moreno came in second with Perez third in Anaheim and Garden Grove.
  • Perez came in second with Martinez third in Santa Ana.
  • Moreno came in second with Martinez third in Orange.

Here’s their vote totals broken down visually by city:

Since Daly came in first by such a large margin (indeed, Daly’s Santa Ana total nearly bested everyone else’s districtwide total) and Barragan fell to fifth by such a large margin (Daly’s Garden Grove total outpaced Barragan’s districtwide total), let’s take a closer look with just Moreno, Perez, and Martinez, who were closer together in the results:

It’s clear that without Anaheim, Perez would have made it into the top two and on to November, rather than Moreno.  Moreno’s final vote total was 5,980 while Perez’s was 5,738.  Without Anaheim, Moreno would have had 4,105 while Perez would have had 4,308. (Anaheim gave Moreno 1,875 votes and Perez 1,430 votes, a 445-vote margin).  Perez lost districtwide to Moreno by 242 votes; without Anaheim, Moreno would have lost to Perez by 203 votes.

Anaheim was a crucial stronghold for Moreno, as he came in fourth in Santa Ana but second in Anaheim.

However, with so few cities in AD-69, and Santa Ana such a strong majority of that district (59% of registered voters in AD-69 live in Santa Ana, and 60% of ballots cast in AD-69 were from Santa Ana), it would be more useful to break this result down into regions smaller than cities.  Luckily for this purpose, the City of Santa Ana has Council wards.

Here, the larger head came in first while the smaller head came in second:

  • Daly came in first with Moreno second in Wards 3 and 6.
  • Perez came in first with Daly second in Wards 1 and 4.
  • Perez came in first with Martinez second in Wards 2 and 5 (Martinez represents Ward 2 on the Santa Ana City Council, by the way).

Despite the fact that Perez won four wards and Daly only won two, Daly actually won Santa Ana by a 10% margin.  How?  Well, 48% of registered voters in Santa Ana live in the two wards that Daly won: Wards 3 and 6.  49% of Santa Anans who voted in the AD-69 race live in Wards 3 and 6, so those two wards did not have disproportionate voter turnout – they just have a disproportionate share of the voters to begin with.  A picture is worth a thousand words, so…

The overwhelming majority of Daly and Moreno’s votes in Santa Ana came from Wards 3 and 6, with 59% of Daly’s Santa Ana votes and 66% of Moreno’s Santa Ana votes coming from those two wards.  By contrast, 29% of Perez’s Santa Ana votes and 38% of Martinez’s Santa Ana votes came from those two wards.  Here’s each candidate’s vote totals broken down visually by ward:

Once again, due to Daly’s landslide first-place finish and Barragan’s distant fifth-place finish, let’s take a closer look with just Moreno, Perez, and Martinez, who were closer together in the results:

Perez’s vote totals were fairly evenly spread out across the wards, Martinez got a bump from Ward 3, but Moreno’s performance was very strong in Wards 3 and 6 and disastrous in Wards 2, 4, and 5.

Had Perez done a stronger push in Anaheim or a three-prong strategy in Anaheim, Santa Ana’s Ward 3, and Santa Ana’s Ward 6, there’d be a Democrat vs. Democrat intraparty battle in AD-69 in November between business-backed Tom Daly and union-backed Julio Perez.

Posted in 69th Assembly District | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments »

How Fast is the Registrar of Voters Counting Ballots? When Will They Finish? Who Will This Affect?

Posted by Chris Nguyen on June 14, 2012

On Friday evening, there were 17,125 uncounted ballots.

By Monday evening, there were 14,724 uncounted ballots, meaning 2,401 ballots were resolved on Monday.

By Tuesday evening, there were 9,528 uncounted ballots, meaning 5,196 ballots were resolved on Tuesday.

By last night, there were 4,625 uncounted ballots, meaning 4,903 ballots were resolved on Wednesday.

At the rate they’re going, it’s highly likely the Registrar of Voters completes the vote count today.

For visual learners:

There are only a few races that could still be affected by the outstanding ballots.

  • Will Ray Grangoff close his 51-vote deficit to overtake Jeff Lalloway for the last slot on the Republican Central Committee from the 68th District?  Will Ken Williams close both his 115-vote deficit to overtake Jeff Lalloway and his 64-vote deficit to overtake Ray Grangroff for the last slot on the Republican Central Committee from the 68th District?
  • Will Bill Dunlap close his 62-vote deficit to overtake John Draper for the last slot on the Republican Central Committee from the 74th District?

Those two races are the only ones in all of Orange County where the gap between the elected and the unelected (or 2nd and 3rd place in those fighting to advance to November from primaries) is 0.3% or less.  It is highly unlikely the 4,625 outstanding ballots would move the needle any more than 0.3%.

There are a couple races where the current leads would be unaffected by the remaining 4,625 ballots, but where the gap could close enough to lead the 3rd or 4th place candidate to pay for a recount to advance to November from the primaries.  (I’m assuming no one’s going to pay for a recount for any party’s Central Committee.)

69th Assembly District
Tom Daly (D) 10,862 39.3%
Jose “Joe” Moreno (R) 5,933 21.5%
Julio Perez (D) 5,649 20.4%
Michele Martinez (D) 4,614 16.7%
Francisco “Paco” Barragan (D) 594 2.1%

Team Perez is likely contemplating whether they’ll pay for a recount if they get within 1% of Jose Moreno (not to be confused with Anaheim City School District Trustee Jose F. Moreno).  Perez’s allies spent six figures trying to elect him, so the cost of a recount wouldn’t be out of the question for them.

72nd Assembly District
Troy Edgar (R) 17,968 28.0%
Travis Allen (R) 12,726 19.8%
Joe Dovinh (D) 12,353 19.3%
Long Pham (R) 12,325 19.2%
Albert Ayala (D) 8,756 13.7%

Long Pham is likely contemplating if he will pay for a recount if he gets within 0.5% of Travis Allen.  It’s unlikely Joe Dovinh or his team have the financial resources to pay for a recount.  Pham would need to dig into his own pockets for a recount.  He’s already spent $100,000 of his personal funds on his campaign and making 2nd place to get to the November general election against Troy Edgar may be the only way he recoups that $100,000.

The 1% for Perez vs. the 0.5% for Pham is on the basis that Perez would be more aggressive than Pham in pursuing a recount, as Perez’s allies spent more and have deeper pockets to pay for a recount while Pham spent less and has more shallow (less deep?) pockets.

Posted in 69th Assembly District, 72nd Assembly District, Orange County, Republican Central Committee | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

AD-69: Traditional D vs. R Match-Up in Daly vs. Moreno; Martinez Plays Spoiler for Perez

Posted by Chris Nguyen on June 13, 2012

On Monday, I took a look at AD-72, and in this post, I’ll be looking at another of OC’s multi-candidate Assembly races that has now narrowed down to two: AD-69.

Conventional wisdom held that if any OC district was going to feature an intraparty battle in November (courtesy of Prop 14), it was going to be the Republicans in AD-74 between Assemblyman Allan Mansoor and Newport Beach Councilwoman Leslie Daigle or the Democrats in AD-69 between OC Clerk-Recorder Tom Daly and either labor leader Julio Perez or Santa Ana Councilwoman Michele Martinez.  (Unexpectedly, it was AD-72 that created OC’s sole intraparty battle with an all-Republican November matchup between Los Alamitos Mayor Troy Edgar and Huntington Beach Businessman Travis Allen.)

AD-69 will come down to Daly and Republican OC Eligibility Technician Jose “Joe” Moreno (not to be confused with Anaheim City School District Trustee Jose F. Moreno).

We here at OC Political predicted Daly vs. Moreno here, here, and here. (While we made several predictions that went wrong [like nearly everybody else, we failed to predict Edgar vs. Allen in AD-72], we’ve been consistent in predicting Daly 1st and Moreno 2nd in AD-69.)

This race was incredibly evenly divided.  Daly was far and away the top vote-getter, getting nearly double the number of votes of the second-place candidate.

Tom Daly 10,724 39.6%
Jose “Joe” Moreno 5,843 21.6%
Julio Perez 5,440 20.1%
Michele Martinez 4,506 16.6%
Francisco “Paco” Barragan 577 2.1%

Some readers may be wondering if Perez could still catch Moreno with the remaining uncounted ballots.   There just aren’t enough out there. 27,090 out of the 417,965 ballots counted in Orange County so far cast votes in AD-69, which equals 6.5% of the votes.  There are 9,528 uncounted ballots remaining in Orange County, which leaves approximately 619 votes remaining in AD-69.  To make up his current 403-vote deficit, Perez would need to be ahead of Moreno by 65.1%.  If Moreno captures 10% of the vote, that would require Perez get 75.1%, leaving just 14.9% to be split between Daly, Martinez, and Barragan.  Let’s say AD-69 has a disproportionate share of the outstanding ballots, and double that to 1,238 ballots remaining in AD-69, Perez would need to be ahead of Moreno by 32.6%.  That is a tough margin for Perez.  If Moreno captures 10% of the vote, that would require Perez get 42.6%, leaving just 47.4% to be split between Daly, Martinez, and Barragan.

It’s clear from the results that Martinez was Perez’s spoiler.  If just 10% of Martinez’s votes had gone to Perez, he would have surpassed Moreno and advanced to a run-off against Daly.  Martinez and Perez were clearly the liberal Democrats in the race, with Daly and Barragan the more moderate Democrats, and Moreno was the Republican.  The lion’s share of Martinez’s votes would have gone to Perez.

It’s now clear that without Michele Martinez in the race, union-backed Democrat Julio Perez would have advanced to the November run-off against business-backed Democrat Tom Daly.

Posted in 69th Assembly District | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 10 Comments »

Tuesday’s Most Important Election

Posted by Chris Nguyen on May 30, 2012

Wisconsin State CapitolSix days from now is Tuesday, June 5, Election Day.

What is the most important election that day?  Is it the CD-47 contest between Alan Lowenthal, Gary DeLong, and Steve Kuykendall?  Is it the Troy EdgarLong PhamTravis Allen fight in AD-72?  Is it AD-69’s Tom Daly vs. Michele Martinez vs. Jose Moreno vs. Julio Perez vs. Paco Barragan battle?  Is it the Third Supervisorial District brawl between Todd Spitzer and Deborah Pauly?

No, the most important election on Tuesday lies 2,000 miles northeast of Orange County.

In Wisconsin, June 5 is Election Day in the recall of Republican Governor Scott Walker.

Labor unions launched the recall after Walker gained the passage of legislation that restricted (but did not eliminate) collective bargaining (requiring annual re-certification of unions via annual member elections, limitations of collective bargaining to salaries rather than benefits) and increased public employee contributions to benefits and pensions, among other things.

This recall election marks a watershed moment in which the power of public employee unions faces off against those who seek to curb the legal prerogatives of those unions.

Wisconsin has an interesting recall procedure.  In California, the question of whether we should remove someone from office is one item on the ballot, with voters casting a “Yes” or “No” vote, and then a separate item on the ballot are all the recall replacement candidates, with the incumbent ineligible to run in the replacement vote.  In Wisconsin, there is no separate question of whether someone is removed: there is a single item in which candidates (including the incumbent) run against each other.  Effectively, when you initiate a recall in Wisconsin, you’re simply calling for an early election for the office, much like a parliamentary by-election or snap election; whereas in California, we vote whether or not to keep the incumbent and separately vote on a replacement.

There was a recall primary on May 8, with Walker winning 97% of the votes in the Republican primary and Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett winning 58% of the votes in the Democratic primary (this is a rematch of the 2010 election, as Walker defeated Barrett in that election); the recall general election is this coming Tuesday, June 5.

Both the Real Clear Politics average of polls and the Huffington Post average of polls show Walker leading Barrett by a few percentage points.

A Walker victory will embolden politicians across the country seeking to curb the power of labor unions while a Barrett victory will be a warning from the labor unions that politicians should be wary of trying to reduce the legal prerogatives of public employee unions and trying to reduce the benefits enjoyed by public employees.

Posted in National | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

OC Republicans Shoot Selves in Foot; OC Democrats’ Worst-Case Scenario Evaporates

Posted by Chris Nguyen on March 16, 2012

In a pre-Prop 14 world, it made absolute good sense to contest every single partisan race.  Each qualified party was guaranteed exactly one candidate on the November ballot.

Prop 14 changed all that.  The top two candidates, regardless of party and regardless of whether anyone breaks 50%, advance to the November ballot.  If the top two candidates were members of the same party, presumably the more moderate candidate would win.  If there were two Democrats, the less liberal one would win thanks to Republican voters.  If there were two Republicans, the less conservative one would win thanks to Democratic voters.  Furthermore, the party with two candidates facing off in November would then spend a fortune in an intraparty battle, freeing the excluded party to spend its human and financial resources elsewhere.

In Orange County:

  • Republicans feared a November bloodbath in AD-74 between Allan Mansoor and Leslie Daigle, in which the less conservative candidate would win.  In AD-74, Republicans comprise 42.5% of registered voters, Democrats 29.0%, and no party preference voters 23.7%.
  • Democrats feard a November bloodbath in AD-69 between Tom Daly, Michele Martinez, Julio Perez, and Paco Barragan, in which the least liberal candidate would win.  In AD-69, Democrats comprise 49.7% of registered voters, Republicans 27.5%, and no party preference voters 19.1%.

Conventional wisdom held:

  • If no Democrat filed in AD-74, Democratic voters would back Republican Leslie Daigle over Republican Allan Mansoor in both June and November, as Daigle is less conservative than Mansoor.  Republicans would squander valuable human and financial resources in an intraparty battle for AD-74, freeing Democrats to spend their resources elsewhere.  However, if a Democrat were in the AD-74 race, presumably that person would be in the top two to face off against the winner of the Mansoor-Daigle fight.
  • If no Republican filed in AD-69, Republican voters would back Democrat Tom Daly over the other three Democrats (Michele Martinez, Julio Perez, and Paco Barragan) in June, as Daly is the least liberal of the four; the Republican voters would continue to back Daly over whichever Democrat he faced in November, as Daly would still be the less liberal candidate.  Democrats would squander valuable human and financial resources in an intraparty battle for AD-69, freeing Republicans to spend their resources elsewhere.  However, if a Republican were in the AD-69 race, presumably that person would be in the top two to face off against the winner of the Daly-Martinez-Perez-Barragan fight.

For about half a week, many in OC, including yours truly, thought the Democrats’ worst nightmare had materialized: a Democrat in AD-74 and no Republican in AD-69, as Robert Rush joined the Democratic Party and entered the AD-74 race while Republican Robert Hammond withdrew from AD-69 to join the Orange County Board of Education race.

Well both party’s fears came to naught and we revert to status quo in November with likely one Democrat versus one Republican.  As my intrepid fellow blog editor Chris Emami wrote, an obscure gentleman by the name of Jose Moreno (not to be confused with Anaheim City School District Trustee Jose Moreno) filed as the sole Republican in AD-69 with barely two minutes to spare.

Robert Rush (D-74) and Jose Moreno (R-69) could spend the next three months in Siberia, and both will still be in the top two in their June races by virtue of having “Democrat” and “Republican” after their names, respectively, allowing them to advance to November, where they will be summarily destroyed by their opponent.

(In case you’re wondering, Rush has a ballot designation of “Business Owner/Accountant” and will be second on the ballot after Daigle but before Mansoor while Moreno has a ballot designation of “Orange County Eligibility Technician” and will be third on the ballot after Daly and Martinez but before Barragan and Perez.  Many voters will be left scratching their heads as to what an eligibility technician is, and if you’re one of them, here’s an explanation of what that is.)

Democrats won’t squander their resources on an intraparty AD-69 battle in November nor will Republicans squander their resources on an intraparty AD-74 battle in November.  Both parties will revert to the old rules of spending their resources against each other in November.

Former Senate Republican Leader Jim Brulte once said in reference to a San Francisco Mayoral race: “When you’re a conservative, and you’ve got a choice between a socialist and a communist, you back the socialist.”  Democrat Robert Rush has enabled the most conservative candidate to win in AD-74, and Republican Jose Moreno just enabled the most liberal candidate to win in AD-69.

Posted in 69th Assembly District, 74th Assembly District | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , | 11 Comments »

Secretary of State’s Incorrect Filing Extension Can Only Be Reversed by Court Order

Posted by Chris Nguyen on March 13, 2012

The Secretary of State is to blame for the incorrect filing extension.
While Emami was chasing his tail trying to get an explanation from the Orange County Registrar of Voters for why AD-69 and AD-72 had candidate filing extended (as he described in this grammatically-flawed post incorrectly blaming the Registrar), I went to the source of the people actually responsible for the filing extension: the Secretary of State.  They were the ones who instructed the county registrars to extend filing on various races.  The Secretary of State had sent this memo to the county registrars (h/t to Capitol Alert for that memo, which was oddly placed inside a post about Elizabeth Emken getting the CRP endorsement).

After contacting friends in Sacramento, they inform me that once the filing period extension has been announced, the Secretary of State cannot reverse the decision, as only a judge with a court order can shut down filing.  Only a candidate who has already completed filing has standing to launch the lawsuit necessary to get the court order (in other words only Tom Daly, Michele Martinez, Julio Perez, or Paco Barragan can sue to end the AD-69 filing extension, and only Troy Edgar, Long Pham, Travis Allen, Joe Dovinh, or Albert Ayala can sue to end the AD-72 filing extension).  If they launched the lawsuit, they’d also have to show that they were harmed by the filing extension (i.e. another candidate filed, but no new person has pulled papers in either AD-69 or AD-72 as of this morning).

Even if a candidate launched the suit, they’d have to be willing to suffer the negative press and the hits from their opponents accusing them of “anti-democratic” action by trying to prevent people from joining the race.

Then in the lawsuit itself, the candidate would then face off against bureaucrats in the Secretary of State’s office who would show some bizarrely liberal interpretation of law justifying the extension.  Then, the plaintiff candidate would have to convince the judge that there was enough damage done to themselves and the electoral process from having additional candidates that warranted an injunction (99% chance the judge would not issue an injunction to reduce the number of candidates).

The Orange County Registrar of Voters also sent this out to their e-mail list yesterday:

Explanation for Contest Extensions

March 12, 2012 – Statewide 53 Congressional, Senate and Assembly contests were extended by the Secretary of State to March 14th at 5:00 p.m.  This takes place in races “for which no eligible incumbent is seeking reelection”. The key is eligible – according to the Secretary of State they have determined that some districts that appear to lack an incumbent have eligible candidates (who currently hold office) that could have moved into the district, causing an incumbency.  Redistricting has contributed to this and In Orange County there are two Assembly Districts (69th and 72nd) that fall into this category.

So it seems that the Secretary of State’s office was encouraging carpetbagging.

  • Despite Jose Solorio being termed out and the vast majority of AD-69 being his district, the justification for extending AD-69 is because tiny pieces of Anaheim and Orange from Chris Norby’s old district were included in the new AD-69, candidate filing was extended since Chris Norby chose to run for his hometown’s AD-65 instead of carpetbagging into AD-69.
  • Despite Jim Silva being termed out and the only sitting Assembly Member in the boundaries of AD-72, the justification for extending AD-72 is because is because portions of Allan Mansoor’s old district were included in the new AD-72, candidate filing was extended since Allan Mansoor chose to run for his hometown’s AD-74 instead of carpetbagging into AD-72.

Wow.  Sometimes the Secretary of State can make even the most cynical people more cynical.

(In the interest of full disclosure, I do work in the office of Assemblyman Chris Norby for my day job.  However, I would oppose him carpetbagging into AD-69 even if I did not work for him.)

Posted in 69th Assembly District, 72nd Assembly District | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments »

Filing Recap: OC Dems’ Worst-Case Scenario Thanks to OCGOP Coups; AD-72 in Disarray; Spitzer, Pauly, & Rocco; Fullerton Recall Lineup Set; State Senate Races

Posted by Chris Nguyen on March 12, 2012

Whole Lot of Candidates

Robert Hammond, Tom Daly, Michele Martinez, Julio Perez, Paco Barragan, Long Pham, Troy Edgar, Travis Allen, Joe Dovinh, Allan Mansoor, Leslie Daigle, Robert Rush, Albert Ayala, Todd Spitzer, Deborah Pauly, Janet Nguyen, and Steve Rocco. Not pictured for space considerations: Matt Harper, Tyler Diep, Bob Huff, Greg Diamond, Mimi Walters, Steve Young, and the 13 Fullerton Recall Candidates

Friday was such a busy candidate filing day that we still haven’t finished all our coverage of candidate filing action here on OC Political, but for those of you who weren’t reading over the weekend, here’s a quick rundown/annotated table of contents of what we’ve covered so far:

The big news that dominated our coverage was the AD-69/AD-72/OCBE chaos:

  • OC Democrats’ Worst-Case Scenario Comes True: Coups Benefit Republicans in AD-69 & AD-74
    Republicans had long feared an all-Republican battle between Assemblyman Allan Mansoor and Newport Beach Councilwoman Leslie Daigle, which would eat up Republican human and financial resources in both June and November.  There were further fears that Democrats would cast their votes for Daigle to oust the more conservative Mansoor.  These fears proved unfounded when Democrat Robert Rush qualified for the ballot.
    However, the scenario Republicans feared in AD-74 became the scenario Democrats face in AD-69.  Republican Robert Hammond pulled out of the AD-69 race, leaving four Democrats to face only each other in a bloody intra-party battle in June.  Then the top two of those four will face each other again in a bloody intra-party battle in November.  AD-69 will eat up Democratic human and financial resources in November when they could have been spending their time, energy, and money battling Republicans.
    (Prop 14 made this possible by eliminating traditional primaries, and requiring the top two candidates from the June primary to advance to the November general election, even if they’re from the same party, even if someone broke 50% in June, and even if there were only two candidates in June.)
  • Hammond Enters OCBE Race & Withdraws from AD-69, Producing OC Democrats’ Worst-Case Scenario
    Republican Robert Hammond withdrew from the AD-69 race to enter the race for Orange County Board of Education, Trustee Area 1.  It was Hammond’s withdrawal from AD-69 that left Democrats in a bloody intra-party war in November, locking up Democratic resources to attack Democrats instead of Republicans.  OCBE 1 is held by conservative Republican Long Pham, who made all this possible by vacating his seat to run for AD-72.
  • AD-72: Five Candidates (Two Democrats, Three Republicans) Running
    The Republicans in the AD-72 race are OCBE Trustee Long Pham, Los Alamitos Mayor Troy Edgar, and Huntington Beach Businessman Travis Allen.  The Democrats are Garden Grove Planning Commissioner Joe Dovinh and 89-year-old Tea Party Democrat Albert Ayala.
  • Matt Harper opts out of 72 AD race
    Not among the candidates was Huntington Beach Councilman Matt Harper who announced his withdrawal on the final day of filing.  Just five weeks ago, the Republican line-up in AD-72 was expected to be Harper, Long Pham, and Westminster Councilman Tyler Diep.  Now Harper and Diep are out, replaced by Troy Edgar and Travis Allen.
  • Bizarre Travis Allen Strategy in AD-72: Alienate Non-Huntington Beach Voters and Declare Los Alamitos to Be “Foreign”
    With Matt Harper out and Travis Allen jumping in the race in the final days of filing, Allen certainly made a splash, with a pair of bizarre press releases that attacked Harper for endorsing “Foreign Candidate” Troy Edgar.

After all the AD-69/AD-72/OCBE chaos, how could we forget the legendary Spitzer-Pauly showdown?  And Steve Rocco!

  • Board of Supervisors: Two Crazy Races on the Docket
    The well-anticipated fiery battle for the Third Supervisorial District is proceeding as expected, with former Assemblyman/Supervisor Todd Spitzer and Villa Park Councilwoman Deborah Pauly facing off.  I don’t think Supervisor Janet Nguyen will object to being known as the boring candidate in her race, as her sole challenger is convicted ketchup thief Steve Rocco.  (For the record, I am not related to Supervisor Nguyen. The last name Nguyen is held by 36% of Vietnamese people.)

Wait, there’s more!  The Fullerton Recall!

  • Battle for Fullerton: The Field is Set
    Thirteen candidates have filed for the three seats up for recall. Rick Alvarez (R), Janes Rands (G), Greg Sebourn (R), and Paula Williams (D) have filed to replace Don Bankhead.  Dorothy A. Birsic (R), Glenn P. Georgieff (D), Matthew Hakim (D), Travis Kiger (R), and Roberta Reid (NPP) have filed to replace Dick Jones.  Doug Chaffee (D), Barry Levinson (R), Sean Paden (R), and Matthew Rowe (NPP) have filed to replace Pat McKinley.

Still more…

We’re still not done with our candidate filing coverage, but at least, now, dear reader, you’re caught up.

I give South OC the award for most boring region in the 2012 Primary.  Things are much more interesting in the North OC and Central OC campaigns.  Fear not, South OC, I anticipate fun from you in the 2014 Primary to replace termed-out Supervisor Pat Bates unless Senator Mimi Walters decides to ruin it all by entering and clearing the field for herself, assuming Assemblywoman Diane Harkey continues on her path to the Board of Equalization.

Posted in 1st Supervisorial District, 29th Senate District, 37th Senate District, 3rd Supervisorial District, 69th Assembly District, 72nd Assembly District, 74th Assembly District, Fullerton, Garden Grove, Huntington Beach, Los Alamitos, Orange County Board of Education, Rossmoor, Santa Ana, Seal Beach | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Hammond Enters OCBE Race & Withdraws from AD-69, Producing OC Democrats’ Worst-Case Scenario

Posted by Chris Nguyen on March 11, 2012

Robert HammondThere are no Republicans running for AD-69, leaving OC Democrats’ worst-case scenario in place.  With no Republicans running for AD-69, Democrats will now spend their human and financial resources attacking each other in June and again in November.  Under Prop 14, the top two finishers in June advance to November.  The presumption had always been that it would be the top Democrat and Republican Robert Morris Hammond facing off in November.  With Hammond out, the Democrats now effectively have to run their expensive primary twice.

OC Clerk-Recorder Tom Daly, Santa Ana Councilwoman Michele Martinez, Union Leader Julio Perez, and Businessman Paco Barragan were supposed to sort out who would carry the Democrats’ banner against Hammond in November.  There had been much speculation that the Latino vote would split, allowing Daly to win the plurality of the Democrats to face off against Hammond, who would consolidate the entirety of the Republican vote.  However, Hammond’s withdrawal leaves two of those four Democrats to face off against each other.  Presumably, Daly still advances with the to face off against one of the Latino candidates.

The question of who wins the AD-69 election is: as the least liberal Democrat in the race, can Daly consolidate the Republican vote behind him?  If the Martinez-Perez-Barragan voters consolidate behind one candidate, they would presumably be the majority of the votes cast by Democrats.  However, if Daly can capture the Republicans, then he will win by combining the Republican vote with the portion of the Democrats’ votes he had in June.  In AD-69, Democrats make up 49.7% of registered voters, Republicans make up 27.5% of registered voters, and No Party Preference voters make up 19.1%.  By winning all the Republicans, half the NPP, and just 30% of Democrats, Daly can form a winning coalition in November.  However, if any of the others can make a play for the Republican vote, they could destabilize the Daly coalition and win themselves.  In a most unusual election, the Democrats in AD-69 may well try to position themselves as the conservative candidate in the Primary, in hopes of holding the Republican vote in November.  (We’ve already received e-mail messages this weekend at OC Political from some of the Dem AD-69 candidates touting their “non-partisan” or “bi-partisan” viewpoints.)

Bottom line for Republicans: the AD-69 race will eat up valuable human and financial resources for the Democrats in November, freeing up Republican resources to spent on other races.  Furthermore, the least liberal Democrat will likely be elected to represent the seat.

Orange County Board of Education Member Long Pham is partly to thank for this event.  Pham’s bid for the 72nd Assembly District left his seat on the County Board vacant.  Republican Robert Hammond had been running for AD-69, heavily on education issues, including overturning SB 48 and enhancing career technical education programs.  Indeed, Hammond has been a teacher since he completed his service in the Marine Corps and earned his college degrees.  With the solidly conservative Pham vacating the OCBE’s Central Orange County seat, that left conservatives searching for a candidate to succeed Pham.

Conservatives quickly turned to one of the most passionate conservative education advocates in Central Orange County – Robert Hammond.  With Hammond’s deep knowledge of and passion for education issues, he is well-suited to be the conservative standard bearer for the Central OC seat on the OCBE.

Ordinarily, we’d run press releases under the “Newsletter Reprint” account, but this particular press release is central to an important piece of political news, so here is the press release from the Hammond campaign…

Robert Hammond Enters Orange County Board of Education Race

SANTA ANA, CA – At the urging of conservative activists and leaders across the county, Robert Morris Hammond has entered the race for Orange County Board of Education, Trustee Area 1.  The seat is being vacated by the incumbent, fellow conservative Republican Long Pham, who is now running for the 72nd Assembly District.

“Education has always been one of my great passions.  After completing my service in the United States Marine Corps and earning my college degrees, I became a teacher,” Hammond said.  “I’ve taught in special education, English Immersion classes, teacher training programs, and adult literacy courses.”

Hammond has long campaigned on education issues, emphasizing faith, family, and freedom.  He has also worked on efforts to overturn SB 48.  As an Orange County Board of Education member, Hammond will be able to fight the implementation of SB 48 in the schools overseen by the OCBE.  SB 48 and increasing career technical education had been two major issues that drove Hammond to run for office.

“It is with great reluctance that I withdraw from the 69th Assembly District race, but after Dr. Pham filed for the 72nd Assembly District on Thursday, numerous conservatives urged me to enter the race for Dr. Pham’s seat,” Hammond added.  “We were all concerned that Dr. Pham’s seat could fall into liberal hands, and with Trustee Area 1 covering much the same territory as AD-69, many concerned conservative citizens and leaders asked me to consider entering the race for the Orange County Board of Education, which I have now done.  I look forward to a vigorous campaign and victory in June.”

Orange County Board of Education, Trustee Area 1 covers Santa Ana, Tustin, Garden Grove (east of Beach Boulevard), and Fountain Valley (east of the 405 freeway).

(In the interest of full disclosure, Hammond is a Custom Campaigns client.)

Posted in 69th Assembly District, Orange County Board of Education | Tagged: , , , , , | 12 Comments »

OC Democrats’ Worst-Case Scenario Comes True: Coups Benefit Republicans in AD-69 & AD-74

Posted by Chris Nguyen on March 10, 2012

Due to Prop 14, instead of a traditional primary (where the top June Primary vote-getter from each party would advance to the November General Election), the top two candidates regardless of party would advance to November.  Before candidate filing opened, conservative Republicans feared that the 74th Assembly District would pit conservative Republican Assemblyman Allan Mansoor versus liberal Republican Newport Beach Councilwoman Leslie Daigle, with no Democrat in the race.  In that scenario, Daigle would grab part of the Republican vote along with nearly all the Democrats’ votes to edge out Mansoor.

Well, now, Orange County Democrats find themselves in their worse-case scenario, and Orange County Republicans are sitting pretty.

There’s a Democrat running in AD-74, and there’s no Republican in AD-69.

AD-74

The candidates in AD-74 are:

With Rush in the race, Daigle’s hopes of using Democratic votes to advance to November are dashed.  Rush will hold the Democratic vote, and Daigle will be forced to battle Mansoor in the June primary for the Republican vote.  Conservative Republican primary voters will pick Mansoor over Daigle, and the November general election will feature the Republicans’ Mansoor versus the Democrats’ Rush.  With a 13% Republican registration advantage, Mansoor will cruise to victory over Rush, instead of a costly general election between two Republicans.

(Mansoor, Daigle, and Rush have already qualified for the ballot while No Party Preference Candidate Paul Vann did not file for the seat.)

AD-69

The candidates in AD-69 are:

(Daly and Martinez have already qualified for the ballot. The Registrar is still examining the nomination paperwork submitted by Perez and Barragan. Republican Robert Hammond did not file for the seat.)

Democrats expected to settle their four-way primary battle between Daly, Martinez, Perez, and Barragan in June, with the winning Democrats likely in one of the first two positions, Republican Robert Hammond in one of the other top two positions, and the losing Democrats occupying spots 3-5.  This would then set up one Democrat versus Hammond, allowing Democrats to unify their money against Republicans in November.

However, with Hammond pulling out of the AD-69 race, that means the four Democrats will battle it out in the June primary and then the top two Democrats will battle it out again in the November general election.  Democrats will be spending their money clobbering each other in AD-69 in November in an expensive intraparty war that simultaneously costs Democrats resources they won’t be spending elsewhere in OC and California and frees up Republican resources to be spent elsewhere in OC and California.

Instead of Republicans spending money against Republicans in AD-74, it’s going to be Democrats spending money against Democrats in AD-69.

Stay tuned for an announcement from the Hammond campaign later today tomorrow…

(In the interest of full disclosure, Robert Hammond is a Custom Campaigns client.)

Posted in 69th Assembly District, 74th Assembly District | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 7 Comments »

New Senate Districts Weaken Statewide GOP, Strengthens OC GOP

Posted by Chris Nguyen on January 30, 2012

On Friday, the California Supreme Court ruled that this year’s elections will go with the maps created by the Citizen’s Redistricting Commission.  This bodes ill for Republicans statewide but could boost the strength of Republicans in Orange County.  Examining the great district-by-district numbers put together by Matt Rexroad, Chandra Sharma, and the rest of the Meridian Pacific team, it appears to me that there are 11 safe Republican districts, 25 safe Democrat districts, and 4 swing districts.

To maintain the status quo, Republicans have to capture all 4 swing seats: the 5th (Sacramento, San Joaquin, and Stanislaus Counties), 27th (LA & Ventura Counties), 31st (Riverside County), and 34th (Orange County).  To reach a 2/3 majority to raise taxes and wreak other havoc on California, Democrats only need to capture half the swing seats.  The 27th is the only one where a sitting Senator (Democrat Fran Pavley) is seeking the seat.  The other three are wide open.

The 5th, 27th, and 31st will all be on the ballot this year.  The 34th will be on the ballot in 2014.  More than 711,000 Californians have signed the petition to put the map on the ballot this November.  Whether the voters overturn the map or retain the map will likely have little effect on these four seats until at least 2016.  Whoever wins the 5th, 27th, and 31st will be able to retain their seats through at least 2016, and any new map would likely have little effect on the 34th, as the shape of that district is heavily controlled by federal Voting Rights Act requirements. Furthermore, Correa keeps the seat until 2014.

No seat is closer than the 34th right here in Orange County.  In the new 34th Senate District, held by termed out Democrat Lou Correa, Democrats hold a 0.6% registration advantage.  (In the old 34th Senate District, where Correa beat Lynn Daucher by 1.4% in 2006 and won re-election over Lucille Kring by 31.6% in 2010, Democrats held a 12% registration advantage.)  The Meridian guys have even dubbed the new 34th district “Open Republican” on their site.

Up for election in 2014, the SD-34 Republican nominee will very likely be either Supervisor Janet Nguyen or the new 72nd District Assemblyman (Tyler Diep or Matt Harper) and the Democrats’ nominee will very likely be either outgoing Assemblyman Jose Solorio or the new 69th District Assemblymember (Paco Barragan, Tom Daly, Michele Martinez, or Julio Perez).  If the new Assemblymembers go for it, they’d have to risk their Assembly seats after just one term in order to run for the Senate.  It would be a safe run for Nguyen and Solorio, as neither of them would be up for election in 2014. (For the record, I am not related to Supervisor Nguyen; 36% of Vietnamese people have the last name Nguyen.)

After 16 years in the hands of the Democrats, SD-34 could return to Republican control, producing the first all-Republican OC delegation to the State Senate since Rob Hurtt lost to Joe Dunn.

The new SD-34 includes:

  • Santa Ana (325,000 people)
  • Garden Grove (171,000 people)
  • 48% of northern Huntington Beach (91,000 people)
  • Westminster (90,000 people)
  • 20% of Central/Eastern Anaheim (68,000 people)
  • 13% of eastern Long Beach (61,000 people)
  • Fountain Valley (55,000 people)
  • Seal Beach (24,000 people)
  • Los Alamitos (11,000 people)
  • Rossmoor (10,000 people)
  • 7% of southwestern Orange (10,000 people)
  • Midway City (8,000 people)

Posted in 34th Senate District | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »