¡Qué Viva Solorio! (the Derailment advances…)


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Jose VillaLast (Tuesday) night, when I already thought I had some big news to share about the struggle to Derail the Sale of the Orange County Fairgrounds, Katrina Foley sent a striking and classic message from her I-Phone:  “Everything is moving fast.  Don’t blink.” And sure enough, the day after Senator Correa tells me that there’s no time to enact legislation before the sale is final, and progressive South Gate Assemblyman Hector De La Torre describes to me his own alternative plan to get a supermajority of the legislature to put together a letter to Arnold, suddenly our own Assemblyman José Solorio does what we’ve all been badgering him to do for a month, and introduces AB 1590 to stop the sale!

So great thanks and kudos to José, and apologies for not having the time or skill to make a less silly-looking photoshop of him as a revolutionary, and thanks as well to his great and supremely helpful legislative aide John Nam!  And the biggest thanks to all of you for your tireless activism in pushing José to do the right thing – now stand close to each other so you can all pat each other on the back, as I know from hard experience how uncomfortable it is to try to do it to yourself.

Asked why he is boldly and correctly reversing himself on the sale, Solorio lays it out to the Daily Pilot:

I did vote for the bill in July to balance the budget.  Since then, there have been a number of questions and disturbing facts. I conducted a hearing, and at the hearing what I found is this whole process has been tainted by mis-representation, mis-communication, conflict of interest, and questionable legal and ethical activities. And I’ve also learned that there’s potential constitutional barrier regarding the sale of the property.

That’s about right, and stated very diplomatically to boot.  Hey, last month, when we were feeling so frustrated with José’s apparent paralysis, didn’t I write this?  Didn’t I?

I feel that perhaps the Honorable José Solorio is just on the verge of discovering what a brave and righteous legislator he can be.  He is on the verge of learsolorioning that you can’t always be a NICE GUY to everybody because there are some real scumbags out there who will talk you into anything.  He’s on the verge of learning that sometimes you just have to PISS SOME POWERFUL PEOPLE OFF to do the right thing, and also that the right thing is not always the MIDDLE GROUND between the right thing and the wrong thing, but sometimes it is just very simple and even popular.

And that it takes a BIG MAN to admit a big mistake and take the necessary steps to change it.  Make those calls and e-mails, I have a feeling that José is on the brink of becoming an Assemblyman we can all be proud of, and not just another Sacramento hack.

Now don’t get lazy and complacent, fellow Derailers!  We have a bill introduced, AB 1590, and it won’t mean a thing if it doesn’t pass and then get signed by the Governor.  (Or override his veto with a supermajority.)  So go back to my posts with all the contact info for your assemblyman and state senator, (phone #s here, addresses here, figure out who your legislators are here) and make sure they vote yes on José’s new bill!

And even more importantly, call the Governor at 916-445-2841 and ask him to:

  • Stop the sale; whether on his own authority now or by signing AB 1590 when it passes; and
  • Meet with Costa Mesa Councilwomen Katrina Foley and Wendy Leece who are wanting to go up and discuss this with him.

Arnold may be the toughest nut to crack, so deluge him with mail, faxes and calls.  Remember this sale originally grew out of his brilliant idea to sell all kinds of state property;  and the folks who pushed to make this particular sale happen so they could get their own hands on our Fairgrounds – that’s the Fair Board themselves – are his old friends and campaign contributors.  That’s why let’s not count our chickens yet – Arnold could still very well say to Orange County, as he did in Terminator,

“F**k you A**hore.”

…but hopefully not.  Call 916-445-2841!!!


About Vern Nelson

Greatest pianist in Orange County. Performs regularly with his savage-jazz quintet The Vern Nelson Problem, and at regular concerts at the Huntington Beach Central Library.