Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 5, 2013
Don Wagner (R-Irvine) and Travis Allen (R-Huntington Beach)
Yesterday afternoon, the Sacramento Bee posted a story about the possible removal of Assembly Republican Leader Connie Conway (R-Visalia).
Conway led her caucus into the 2012 elections and into its smallest size since 1883. (In a ray of hope, while Republicans held 19 seats in 1883, the GOP gained 41 additional seats to reach 60 seats in 1885, thereby flipping a 61-19 majority for Democrats into a 60-20 majority for Republicans in two years).
While Conway’s failings and probable removal were the main thrust of the story, the more interesting information for our readership is that the two leading contenders in the story to replace Conway are both from Orange County.
Second-term Assemblyman Don Wagner of Irvine and first-term Assemblyman Travis Allen of Huntington Beach were cited as the two most likely contenders.
In the last 30 years, there have been 18 Assembly Republican Leaders, but only four have been from Orange County:
- Ross Johnson (1988-1991)
- Curt Pringle (1995-1996, 1996-1997; the interruption in Pringle’s tenure as Republican Leader is because he was Speaker in 1996)
- Scott Baugh (1999-2000)
- Bill Campbell (2000-2001)
In the same time span, there have been 10 Senate Republican Leaders, and three have been from Orange County (and four have represented Orange County):
- Rob Hurtt (1995-1998)
- Ross Johnson (1998-2000)
- Dick Ackerman (2004-2008)
- Bob Huff (2012-present) – Huff is not from Orange County but represents substantial portions of OC
First elected in 2010, Wagner terms out in 2016. First elected in 2012, Allen terms out in 2024. (In both cases, I’m assuming that they are both re-elected the maximum number of terms allowed and serve those terms consecutively.)
In either case, Wagner or Allen would be the first Assembly Republican Leader from Orange County in a dozen years.
The next Assembly Republican Leader has exactly two priorities: protecting seats currently held by Republicans and winning seats occupied by Democrats. The top three seats the leader needs to protect are Jeff Gorell‘s Ventura County seat, Mike Morrell‘s San Bernardino County seat, and freshman Eric Linder‘s western Riverside County seat. Target #1 is the Antelope Valley seat held by freshman Steve Fox (D). Target #2 will be in the leader’s backyard (assuming Wagner or Allen is the next leader) with the North Orange County seat occupied by freshman Sharon Quirk-Silva (D).
Failure to preserve the existing seats 25 seats and failure to gain either of those target seats will result in the next leader going the way of Conway, and let’s not forget Conway became Republican Leader when Martin Garrick stepped down after losing a Republican seat in 2010.
Posted in 68th Assembly District, 72nd Assembly District | Tagged: Bill Campbell, Connie Conway, Curt Pringle, Dick Ackerman, Don Wagner, Eric Linder, Jeff Gorell, Mike Morrell, Rob Hurtt, Ross Johnson, Scott Baugh, Sharon Quirk-Silva, Steve Fox, Travis Allen | 6 Comments »
Posted by Chris Nguyen on December 2, 2012
Map pf the 36th Assembly District (Courtesy of Meridian Pacific)
In an unexpected turn of events, Democrats have captured their 55th Assembly seat by taking the 36th Assembly District that covers LA County’s Antelope Valley, southeastern Kern County, and the San Bernardino County communities of Phelan, Pinon Hills, and Wrightwood. Republicans now hold just 25 seats. 2/3 of the seats is 54.
Democrat Attorney/Teacher Steve Fox defeated Republican Lancaster Councilman/Business Owner Ron Smith by 145 votes after LA County finished counting its ballots today. Smith had led Fox by 1,952 votes after Election Night counting.
The Assembly had already assigned an office to Republican Smith and posted his picture on the wall of Assembly Members. Smith had hired most of his staff, and the office of Legislative Counsel had already prepared two pieces of legislation for Smith to introduce. Smith has stated that he will seek a recount.
Photo of Ron Smith’s name plate next to the door of Capitol Room 3149 (Courtesy of OneVoter.org)
The Assembly is set to swear in its new members tomorrow at 12 noon. It is unclear if Fox will be sworn in or if the Assembly will wait for the results of the recount.
The old 36th Assembly District seat was held by Steve Knight, who left after two terms to successfully win election to the new 21st Senate District.
LA County Registrar Dean Logan’s claim to national fame was as Elections Director in King County, Washington in 2004.
- In the 2004 Washington gubernatorial election, Republican Dino Rossi led Democrat Christine Gregoire by 261 votes at the end of vote counting.
- After the first recount (triggered by Washington’s automatic machine recount law), Rossi’s lead shrunk to 42.
- In the second recount (a manual one request by the Washington Democratic Party), Logan announced that 561 rejected absentee ballots would be counted, and workers in Logan’s county found another 162 uncounted ballots on a tray in a warehouse. This totaled 723 ballots that had not been counted before. After they were counted, Rossi’s 42-vote lead became a 129-vote deficit.
- After much legal wrangling, Gregoire was sworn in as Governor on the day Governor Gary Locke’s term expired. Gregoire defeated Rossi 53%-47% in a 2008 rematch.
Posted in California | Tagged: Acton, Antelope Valley, Boron, California City, Christine Gregoire, Dean Logan, Dino Rossi, Edwards Air Force Base, Elizabeth Lake, Kern County, Lake Los Angeles, Lancaster, Leona Valley, Littlerock, Los Angeles County Registrar of Voters, Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk, North Edwards, Palmdale, Phelan, Pinon Hills, Quartz Hill, Ron Smith, Rosamond, Steve Fox, Steve Knight, Sun Village, Wrightwood | 2 Comments »