When Cecilia Iglesias and Karina Onofre asked the Republican Party of Orange County’s Central Committee to endorse them this year, before the General Election, they were run through the wringer. Iglesias in particular was hammered because of her support for the Dream Act.
Now OC GOP Chairman Scott Baugh is singing a different tune – in the wake of the overwhelming defeat of the Republican Presidential nominee, Mitt Romney, by President Barack Obama. I saw Baugh on Rick Reiff’s post-election TV show and he admitted that the GOP better figure out immigration. That is the message that both Iglesias and Onofre are now espousing as well.
Iglesias was victorious in her campaign for the SAUSD School Board. In fact she defeated two Democrats – Valerie Amezcua and Myriam Tinajero, who were supported by liberal SAUSD Trustee John Palacio and by the unions.
Onofre refused to commit her own funds to engage in direct mail in her campaign for Ward 5 on the Santa Ana City Council, and so she lost to Roman Reyna, an SAUSD Trustee who had much more name I.D. than she did. But Onofre now has set her sights on a higher goal – she tells me that she wants to run against U.S. Rep. Loretta Sanchez in 2014.
Onofre recently posted this message on her Facebook page:
The Republican Party needs to be the Heroic Political Party and Spearhead an IMMIGRATION REFORM POLICY that is long overdue and will both stimulate our economy and create an alliance of Loyalty between Latinos and the GOP -it has been 26 years since Ronald Reagan, our Republican President, gave millions of Latinos legal residency.
There were actually several Republican candidates for local office on the Nov. 6 ballot in Santa Ana, including:
- Rob Richardson (won re-election to the SAUSD School Board)
- Charles Hart (lost badly in the Ward 3 election for the Santa Ana City Council)
- Thomas Gordon (lost in his race for the Rancho Santiago Community College District)
- Brett Franklin (lost in the Ward 3 election but did far better than Hart)
- George Collins (lost his race for the Santa Ana Mayor’s seat)
- Lupe Moreno (lost her race for the Santa Ana Mayor’s seat)
- Jose “Joe” Moreno (was not supported by the OC GOP and withdrew from the race for the 69th Assembly District, due to a conflict with the Federal Hatch Act)
- Jerry Hayden (lost badly as a carpetbagger running against U.S. Rep. Loretta Sanchez
- Travis Allen (won his race for the 72nd Assembly District, which includes west Santa Ana)
Most of these candidates should really stop running for office in Santa Ana. It is an exercise in futility for the Harts and Gordons of the world. They need to get behind Onofre and Iglesias and they need to stop bashing immigrants and get with the program. But will they?
The OC GOP also needs to stop bashing gays. A gay Republican, Carl DeMaio, did very well in his bid for the San Diego Mayor’s office this year. And another gay Republican, Kevin James, recently drew the support of a GOP Super PAC, according to the L.A. Times. Gays tend to be well educated and have high disposable incomes. Why would the GOP want them out of their party?
The Republican Party cannot long survive as a party of angry white old men. The OC GOP just lost another Assembly Seat – the 65th Assembly District, where a Latina, Sharon Quirk-Silva took out Chris Norby. They better start listening to Onofre and Iglesias!