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Posts Tagged ‘Vincent Sarmiento’

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

Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 22, 2016

Andrew Do, Michele Martinez, Steve Rocco

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Termed Out City Councilmembers Eyeing School and Water Boards

Posted by Chris Nguyen on July 30, 2014

In the era of term limits, many City Councilmembers run for higher office while others seek to extend their political lives by running for lower office.  As we peer into candidate filing, there are at least three City Councilmembers are exercising the option to do the latter.

La Palma City Councilman Henry Charoen, Garden Grove City Councilwoman Dina Nguyen, and Newport Beach City Councilwoman Leslie Daigle

La Palma City Councilman Henry Charoen, Garden Grove City Councilwoman Dina Nguyen, and Newport Beach City Councilwoman Leslie Daigle

  • La Palma City Councilman Henry Charoen has pulled (and filed) papers for the Centralia School District
  • Garden Grove City Councilwoman Dina Nguyen has pulled papers for Orange County Water District, Division 1
  • Newport Beach City Councilwoman Leslie Daigle has pulled papers for Orange County Water District, Division 5

Charoen and the Centralia School District

Charoen (R) is prepared for this campaign for Centralia School District, transferring nearly $30,000 into his school board account from his Assembly account after he opted not to seek the AD-65 seat.  $30,000 pays for a lot of voter contact in a district as tiny as Centralia, plus he has significant name ID in the La Palma portion of Centralia.  He also teaches at UCI.  At this point, Charoen is the only one who has actually filed.

Incumbent Lisa Jordan (R) has pulled papers, as has appointed incumbent Kevin Sequeira (R).  73-year-old incumbent Irv Trinkle (R) has not pulled papers, and I’ve heard conflicting rumors about him, with some saying he’s retiring and others saying he’s running for re-election (Trinkle’s campaign web site was last updated in the spring).

Former Centralia Board Member Art Montez (D) pulled papers for both Centralia and the Buena Park Library District.  Jordan beat Montez by 64 votes in 2010 when Montez was an incumbent.  Montez lost by 5% in 2012 in an unsuccessful bid to return to the Board.  If Montez files and loses for a third consecutive time, he risks going from former Board member to perennial Board candidate.  He has to either sit this one out or win his old seat back in order to avoid that fate.  He probably shouldn’t file for both the Centralia School District and the Buena Park Library District, lest he suffer the fate of former Water Board Director Douglas Chapman, who lost both races when he ran for two seats in 2012.

Though an experienced field of elected officials have pulled papers in Centralia, the first person who pulled papers was 20-year-old Chapman University student Connor Traut (D) who moved to Anaheim a few months ago from Ladera Ranch, where he was a member of the Ladera Ranch Civic Council.  Traut is an acolyte of Anaheim Councilman Jordan Brandman (D).  (Brandman allies seem to be popping up in different Anaheim school board seats, as D.R. Heywood (D) has pulled papers in the Anaheim City School District.)

Nguyen and Orange County Water District Division 1

Nguyen (R) appears to be unopposed for the Division 1 seat in the Orange County Water District.

In total, the OCWD Board has ten members: seven directly-elected and three appointed by City Councils (Anaheim, Fullerton, and Santa Ana). Incumbent Kay Barr is the only directly-elected Democrat on the OCWD Board.  The other six directly-elected members are Republicans.  Of the three appointed positions, Anaheim appointed Harry Sidhu (R), Fullerton appointed Jan Flory (D), and Santa Ana appointed Vincent Sarmiento (D).

Barr is retiring, and Nguyen is the only candidate who has pulled papers.  Dina Nguyen made an ill-fated bid for Orange County Supervisor against Janet Nguyen (R) in 2008.  Barr and both Nguyens served on the Garden Grove City Council: Barr from 1962-1970 and 1974-1978, Janet Nguyen from 2004-2007, and Dina Nguyen from 2006-present.  Barr has been an OCWD Board Member since 1979.  At 35 years, Barr’s exit ends the longest tenure by a single person in the 81-year history of OCWD.

(For the record, I am not related to either Dina Nguyen or Janet Nguyen.  The last name Nguyen is held by 36% of Vietnamese people.)

Daigle and Orange County Water District Division 5

Daigle (R) is challenging incumbent Orange County Water Board Member Steve Sheldon (R).  Sheldon was appointed to the OCWD Board in 2005 and won 71% of the vote in his 2006 bid for a full term against termed out Newport Beach City Councilman Tod Ridgeway (R).  Presumably, Daigle does not plan to suffer the same fate as Ridgeway.  She does have significantly higher name ID than Ridgeway did thanks in part to her ill-fated run for AD-74 when she challenged Allan Mansoor in 2012.  She fared slightly better in OCWD Division 5 than in the rest of the district, winning 25.3% of the vote (as opposed to her districtwide total of 23.8%).

Posted in Centralia School District, Garden Grove, La Palma, Newport Beach, Orange County Water District | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

Free Speech gets taken to court

Posted by Thomas Gordon on February 29, 2012

20120229-122334.jpg

Sam Aresheh was scheduled to make an appearance in court this morning to answer to charges being pursued by the City Attorney of Santa Ana.

What’s his crime?

Speaking up for what he believed in.

According to news reports Mr Aresheh was arrested for violating Santa Ana’s anti camping ordinance. Mr Aresheh was participating in the Occupy OC demonstration in the Santa Ana Civic Center and had erected a tent to escape the elements. He was warned that he would be be arrested and according to news reports from the scene, he and three others were surrounded by roughly 20 police officers and six police cars, including a crime scene investigation van and officers on horseback.

At the time of the arrest Santa Ana was teetering on the brink of insolvency yet somehow mustered up the resources to arrest, jail, criminally charge and pursue a court case against those arrested.

Three of those arrested accepted a plea deal from the Santa Ana City Attorney, while Mr Aresheh decided to face judge and jury.

To add insult to injury, the Santa Ana City Council took action to support the mission and goals of the Occupy movement and to recognize its right to the peaceful and lawful exercise of its First Amendment rights. I’m not in agreement with the message of Occupy, but I’ll always defend their right to free speech in a peaceful manner.

Councilmember Vincent Sarmiento requested that the Santa Ana City Attorney up the resolution and stated “We know that this city, in particular, is part of the 99 percent”

Councilmember Sal Tinajero stated that he and his son had visited Occupy NY and stated that “there is a tremendous amount of money and influence that goes into our government and that the occupiers see that there is a possibility that our democracy could get away from us”

Maybe they should talk to Interim City Attorney Joe Straka about dismissing all charges in the interest of our democracy and the First Amendment.

Posted in Santa Ana, Uncategorized | Tagged: , , , , , , | 16 Comments »