Orange County’s self-appointed Latino leaders are blaming the 2011 redistricting (that added more Vietnamese voters to the First Supervisorial District while removing Latino voters) for Lou Correa’s loss to Andrew Do in the January 27 First District Special Election, according to the O.C. Register.
The truth is that the Democratic Party of Orange County’s bizarre decision to give then Supervisor Janet Nguyen a free pass in 2012 has now cost the Democrats not only the First District but also the 34th State Senate District, which Nguyen won in last year’s General Election. And the Democrats might also lose the 46th Congressional District in 2016 if Nguyen comes gunning for the incumbent, U.S. Rep. Loretta Sanchez.
Nguyen was up for reelection in the First District in 2012. The Democrats did not recruit a candidate to challenge her. In fact her only opponent was the nutty Steve Rocco, who lost badly to Nguyen in the June Primar Election in 2012.
While the OC Democrats were busy ignoring Nguyen in 2012 a bevy of them ran for the 69th Assembly District that year including then OC Clerk-Recorder Tom Daly, labor organizer Julio Perez, Santa Ana Councilman Michele Martinez and unemployed CPA Francisco Barragan. The Latino vote split proved deadly that year as Barragan got just enough votes to push Perez out of the Top Two General Election. Daly ended up beating an unknown and unsupported Republican, Jose Moreno, in the 2012 General Election.
Imagine if Martinez or Perez had run against Nguyen instead of beating each other up in the 69th Assembly District Primary Election in 2012?
To compound matters, former State Assemblyman Jose Solorio inexplicably refused to attack Nguyen in the 2014 Primary Election, when they faced off in the 34th State Senate District election. Nguyen trounced Solorio in the Primary and then went on to use that momentum to wreck him in the General Election.
Then Nguyen rolled up her sleeves and got her henchman Do elected this year in the First District Special Election. If she takes out Sanchez in 2016 she will have almost completely destroyed the Democrat’s vaunted “blue donut hole” here in Orange County – all because they refused to challenge her in 2012.
You might even say that the Democrats shot themselves in the foot even earlier than that when Nguyen was first elected to the OC Board of Supervisors in 2007. The election ended in a near draw with Nguyen just barely netting more votes than the runner-up, Trung Nguyen. The Orange County Employees Association (OCEA) ended up paying for the recount, at the suggestion of then State Senator Lou Correa. Oops! That move eventually backfired on both labor and Correa.
In 2008, Nguyen had to run again for a full term in the First District. There was a Democrat in the race that year – Hoa Van Tran. But would you believe it? The Democrats turned on him and helped Nguyen to defeat him! There were allegations at the time that he was allied with Republican power broker Van Tran but those charges proved to be total BS.
The stupidy of the Orange County Democrats is mind-blowing. They have fumbled away their graps on Central Orange County and also lost the 65th Assembly District in North Orange County. The Democrat run City Councils in Irvine and in Huntington Beach were also lost last year as Republicans took firm control of both those cities.
You can blame the 2011 redistricting all you want but the reason that the Democrats are failing in Orange County is staring back at them when they look in the mirror.