Garden Grove Mayor Bao Nguyen plans to make his bid for U.S. Congress official on Tuesday with a noon announcement in Santa Ana, heightening the already considerable competition to replace Rep. Loretta Sanchez, D-Orange, according to the O.C. Register.
Nguyen will be running against a slew of his fellow Democrats including former state Senators Lou Correa and Joe Dunn, Anaheim Councilman Jordan Brandman and unknown Pomona Democrat Heberto Sanchez, who works for the Los Angeles County Department of Health.
Irvine Councilwoman Lynn Schott is the only Republican who has shown interest in running for the Sanchez seat, in the 46th Congressional District. While Schott grew up in Santa Ana she now lives in Irvine and has no business running for this seat.
You might argue that no Republican should be running for the 46th CD given that Democrats outnumber Republicans among registered voters by 19 percentage points.
While Nguyen is a popular choice among liberals the reality is that he is a long shot for the 46th CD. Only 16,431 voters in the district come from Garden Grove. Over 93K voters hail from Anaheim and there are over 81K voters in Santa Ana. However many Latinos in Santa Ana don’t bother to vote.
You have to figure that Correa is leading the pack. Dunn and Brandman will split the white vote. One of them likely had something to do with Sanchez running for the 46th CD.
There are also 31K voters in Orange – and I can’t imagine many of them will vote for Nguyen or Correa.
In terms of party registration, the 46th Congressional District is 46.8% Democrat, 27.5% Republican and 21.7% No Party Preference.
In our top two primary system it is likely that two Democrats will emerge from the open primary and face off again in the general election.
Can Nguyen vault over Brandman and Dunn and come in second behind Correa? If so what could happen in the general election?
This might be Correa’s last shot at getting elected again. But for Nguyen this will most likely serve as an introduction. Perhaps he will challenge State Senator Janet Nguyen in a couple years?