The Orange County Voter Registrar finally closed the ballot counting from the June 5 Open Primary, yesterday. Ultra liberal 69th Assembly District candidate Julio Perez lost by 242 votes to Republican Jose “Joe” Moreno, who will now face off against top vote-getter Tom Daly, a corporate Democrat, in the November General Election.
Perez and his union allies spent a small fortune and all they got out of it was third place. I have argued in a previous post that Perez and fellow Democrat Michele Martinez both erred by not attacking Daly, but there might be more to this story.
Perez’ fellow liberal, Francisco Barragan, entered this contest late and did not campaign, with the exception of a few huge signs. Barragan, like Martinez, lives in Santa Ana. Perez claims to as well but that has been contested throughout his campaign.
Why did Barragan enter this race? He is closely allied with failed Santa Ana Mayoral candidate Alfredo Amezcua. He is also a close friend of liberal Orange Juice blogger Vern Nelson, who is a Perez loyalist. Barragan lived in San Francisco for years and I am quite familiar with his political viewpoints. He pretends to be conservative, as a former Marine, but his viewpoint is just as liberal as Nelson’s. And they both embraced the Occupy movement.
I have theorized that Barragan ran in order to undermine Martinez, but he may have cost Perez the election. Barragan ended up with a measly 605 votes. By entering the race, Barragan further split the male and Latino votes.
To make matters worse, Barragan’s poor showing in this election kills any thoughts of running this guy for any other office in the future. By making the bad decision to run in this race, Barragan screwed himself and Perez! Barragan also screwed the people of Santa Ana, as the two remaining candidates, Daly and Moreno, live in Anaheim. Fail!
Liberals will no doubt blame Moreno for Perez’ loss, but I truly doubt that Perez was going to get any Republican votes. The blame lies squarely on Barragan’s shoulders. Nice job Paco!