UPDATED: Former OC GOP Chairman Tom Fuentes has passed away, according to the OC Political Blog.
I worked with OC GOP Chairman Emeritus Tom Fuentes back in his heyday, when I was the inaugural OC GOP Hispanic Outreach Director. He was something back then. No one could run a meeting quite like Fuentes, who was famous for his “one clap.” He had asked me to help the Republican Party to reach out to Latinos – but by the time I quit the OC GOP Central Committee, in 2007, the Republican Party of Orange County had gone from reaching out to Latinos to bashing them. It was a sad turn of events.
Fuentes is now deathly ill with cancer, but he is still working on behalf of his beloved Republican Party. He summoned GOP Assembly candidates Allan Mansoor and Keith Carlson (Huntington Beach) to his bedside this week, at his home in Lake Forest, according to O.C. Register columnist Frank Mickadeit, and sure enough Fuentes did it again – convincing Carlson to pull out of the race for the 74th Assembly District. That paves the way for Mansoor to go head to head with moderate Republican Leslie Daigle, a popular Newport Beach Councilwoman. Continue reading