Former State Senator John Lewis has such a hold on the Republican Party of Orange County that he was able to force the withdrawal of Robert Hammond, their candidate for the 69th Assembly District, so as to pave the way for his Democratic pal Tom Daly. And Lewis also ran the failed campaign of Chris Norby, for the 65th Assembly District. With the loss of Norby’s seat, and the 69th, the California Republican Party ceded a supermajority in the State Assembly to the California Democratic Party.
But Lewis is not the only one to blame. OC GOP Chairman Scott Baugh (a political consultant) and OC Supervisor Janet Nguyen were personally involved in pulling Hammond out of the race for the 69th. And neither of them helped Jose “Joe” Moreno, the Anaheim Republican who, at the last minute, filed for the 69th rather than concede the victory to Daly. Moreno was however undone by allegations that he violated an obscure Federal law – the Hatch Act. Moreno, an employee of the O.C. Health Agency, was accused of this by labor, even though he is a longtime union member.
The argument some Republican made in withdrawing from the battle for the 69th, which is a majority Democrat district, was that they could thus focus their firepower on Norby’s opponent, Sharon Quirk-Silva. But their guns ran dry at the end and Quirk-Silva was very capably assisted by U.S. Rep. Loretta Sanchez.
In the end Lewis simply ran a horrible campaign, that included a campaign mailer featuring Norby and Marilyn Davenport, the Fullerton Republican who sent out an email of the Obama family in chimpanzee form, and Norby and the GOP paid the price. And Norby’s loss was not the only price paid. Norby’s Chief of Staff, Chris Nguyen, who attacked Moreno on his OC Political blog (which is not in any way affiliated with this blog) now is out of a jot. And promising Libertarian-leaning Republican Travis Kiger also lost in his race for the Fullerton City Council – as Democrat Jan Flory benefited from the Democratic surge that helped to elect Quirk-Silva. Apparently the Democrats were busy registering voters in Fullerton over the past year while the Republicans were scheming with Lewis.
For Lewis none of this matters as he got Daly elected – and the reason for that was the millions of transportation dollars that Lewis and his Republican cadre of consultants are trying to waste in Anaheim. You see Lewis headed up the Measure M (sales tax increase) renewal campaign team – composed of Jeff Flint, Lewis and Matt Holder, according to none other than his fellow GOP consultant Matt Cunningham, when he posted this under his anon name, “Jubal,” on his now dead OC Blog. Cunningham referred to these snakes as “thinking political conservatives who have been active in the conservative movement for many years (in Lewis’ case, since the late 1960s) — so they understand the conservative OC voter mind. That is crucial, since the effort to renew Measure M will be won or lost among conservative voters.”
Lewis and his pals, including his felllow consultant Curt Pringle, have known for awhile that Orange County is eventually going to turn blue, or at least purple. But they don’t give a damn. What is important to them is keeping the money flowing into their coffers. Just like the turncoat Republicans (including Dave Gilliard and Jimmy Camp) who propped up Irvine Mayor Larry Agran for so long – as the OC Great Park money was pumped into their bank accounts.
Lewis, Pringle and company are set to blow millions of dollars on the unneeded Anaheim ARTIC station, which you can read about here, and an ill-advised street car system that will benefit their master, the Disney Company. They all conspired, along with Disney, to elect the new Pringle – Democrat Jordan Brandman, to the Anaheim City Council.
This should all be embarrassing to the remaining Republicans in the OC who do care about limiting government and stopping government waste and corruption. While Politico.com posted an article this week about the changing demographics in Orange County, they missed out on the fact that Irvine is now controlled by Republicans who are not affiliated with Lewis or Pringle. And over in Santa Ana the liberal Democratic candidates who ran as the “Santa Ana Spring” lost – in fact two Republicans (Ceci Iglesias and Rob Richardson) ended up being the top vote-getters in the SAUSD School Board race. And moderate Democrats prevailed as Santa Ana Mayor Miguel Pulido was easily re-elected and Santa Ana Mayor Pro Tem Claudia Alvarez was elected to the Rancho Santiago Community College District’s Board of Education, as was termed out Assemblyman Jose Solorio.
The unprincipled Republican consultants who run Orange County have now delivered a supermajority in our State Assembly to the Democrats. How’s them apples?