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(Don’t worry, Dear Readers — I’m going to explain every last word in that headline.)
The above screen capture is what’s presented when you load the SFGate.com site — meaning that I didn’t go out of my way to find it — of a video of the San Francisco Chronicle‘s Joe Garofoli interviewing Young Kim, the Buttkicking Bigot from La Habra, talking trash while visibly drunk on media attention at last weekend’s California Republican Party Convention in Anaheim.
A warning to viewers: you may find some aspects of this interview shocking. And yes, IT’S TRANSCRIBED BELOW for your further enjoyment! (Political geeks, don’t miss the sidebar in red, below!)
[TRANSCRIPT by Orange Juice Blog Transcriptions Services.
Orange Juice Blog Transcriptionists: “For when you Karen Huff to sin the furry vest”]
SFC: OK, we’re here at the Republican convention here in Anaheim. I’m with Young Kim, and she is running for the Assembly District in Orange County. And again — a bit of unusual candidate. When I was at your intro the other day, several people said: … she’s … KOREAN! She’s a woman! She’s a Republican! That’s, like, an unusual thing. But you say this is also a political advantage — that’s why you were recruited, too. Tell us about that.
YK: Yes. The 65th Assembly District represents the north and west Orange County.
SFC: Yeah. [Note: further mm-hmms and such omitted.]
YK: Fullerton, Buena Park, La [Palma], Cypress, Stanton, and West Anaheim. It is traditionally a very conservative district. The current State Assemblywoman, Sharon Quirk-Silva, did not win that seat. Unfortunately the Republican lost it in the last election cycle, but it was a bad year for all Republicans. Now, having said that, that win for Sharon Quirk-Silva gave the State Legislature a 2/3 supermajority. That is bad for us in Orange County, especially when the district, in the last redistricting cycle, has turned into 1/3 Asian, 1/3 Hispanic, 1/3 Caucasian. She’s Hispanic; I’m Asian. She’s Latina Democrat; I’m Asian Republican. She’s a woman; I’m a woman.
OK. She had the advantage of being a minority, a woman, and she went after our former State Assemblyman, Chris Norby, but she doesn’t have all the flaws that they went after him against Young Kim, because I don’t have any flaws.
SFC: [Starts cracking up laughing.]
YK: I am going to infiltrate into Sharon Quirk-Silva’s comfort zone — and I’m going to take her voters away.
SFC: And what is her “comfort zone”? What do you say –
YK: Woman! Minority! She’s not going to claim all those to her benefit, because I am going after the minority group that is hugely popular, Asian Americans — they come out and vote! Unlike the Hispanics.
YK: They will contribute to a candidate they believe is the best shot at getting that seat back — and that Asian Americans will do that. They have already proven that, for me, in a short period of time, in two fundraisers, I have have raised over $300,000 –
SFC: $300,000 in a few months. You have worked for Ed Royce, Congressman, for twenty years.
YK: Yes [Note: more “yes” and other interrupted cross-speak omitted.]
SFC: You know this district backwards and forwards, because you’ve worked for him in the district, in and around the district, for two decades.
YK: And like I said: when I say she doesn’t represent the interests and the values of the district, the district is traditionally very conservative, faith-based community.
SFC: You are very conservative socially –
YK: Very conservative, socially as well, and I do not subscribe to what she believes in, such as the transgender legislation that she worked hard to get it passed — it doesn’t reflect the values. I would not have even entertained such a thought. When the vote comes up, on the vote, I would say: “What a stupid, crazy bill. Who introduced it?” I would say that. I would not vote for something like that.”
SFC: I think that these debates that you two will have should be on statewide television. I think these will be very entertaining debates, uh buh this is — this is going to be great stuff, and, uh, we’ll see you down the road –
YK: Thank you.
SFC: — it’s gonna be, it’s gonna be one of the hot races in California, lot of money, lot of attention on both sides, and we’ll see you soon!
YK: I’m aware of that, so I’m ready, I already rolled up my sleeves, I’m ready, and I’m already … working hard. I’m hitting the ground, 100%, and I will kick her butt.
SFC: WOW! All right. Thank you.
Yeah, “WOW” is right. Please don’t take down this video, San Francisco Chronicle, because I don’t want anyone thinking that I made any of this up just to hurt her campaign.
Now it’s a good time for me to explain the references in the headline.
“Fibbin’“: According to highly strung Ed Royce Chief of Staff Amy Porter, in complaining about me to campus police in my presence at the Cal State Fullerton Student Union, Young Kim told her that I had “harassed” her a short time before at Ed Royce’s “Annual Women’s Conference,” addressing mostly the women’s issues themes of Food, Fashion and Personal Finance. As I wrote in my account of the story at the time, either Amy Porter lied to the Police or Young Kim lied to Amy Porter — and of course the latter prospect matters more right now.
To recap the story: I was making the rounds of the various “breakout sessions” and the Conference when I saw Young Kim walking past me a corridor. I did not speak to her or try to take a photo of her at that time, somewhat regretting the opportunity to get one for our files. After snapping a photo of the breakout session, I walked back through the corridor and encountered Young Kim once again returning. I asked her if she was Young Kim and she smiled while saying yes. I then asked her if I could take a photo. She asked for whom, and I told her the truth: that I was with the Orange Juice Blog and we wanted a nice stock photo of her to use in next year’s election. I gave her a moment to compose herself and let her pose against what seemed like an and reasonably flattering — at least by CSUF corridor standards — uncluttered background. She smiled nicely for the camera. Then, as I was snapping the photo, reproduced at right, it seemed that she suddenly started to recall either who we were or who I was and her congenial expression started to fade. I thanked her and scooted off.
I still think that it’s a decent enough photo; the complexity of the expression makes it that much more interesting. But I do not like that either Young Kim made up a story and lied to Amy Porter to cover up her having made the “mistake’ of my letting her take her photo — which truly was intended simply for identification purposes — or that Amy Porter made up a story and lied to the police to get me evicted from a public event (or worse.) I encourage them once again to get their story straight — if they both agree that Young Kim told Amy Porter that I had harassed her, then Young Kim is the liar. (Or, for headline purposes, “fibber.”)
“Bigoted“: This one probably doesn’t need a whole lot of explanation. The glee with which she talks about how inconceivable it would be to even consider allowing the small number of verifiably transgender students to use the restroom associated with their gender speaks loudly. If she thinks that celebrating how the “hugely popular” Asian American electorate votes and the Hispanic community doesn’t — way to show that the election is about the merits! — I’m torn about whether that makes her a “bigot” — but if this were a football game it would certainly be going up in the Hispanic community’s pre-game locker room.
“Buttkicker“: She said umprompted, in an introductory video interview with a major media outlet, that she was going to “kick Sharon Quirk-Silva’s butt.” Henceforth, Young Kim shall be known as “the Buttkicker.” Any argument out there? (Better make it good.)
“Disses Norby“: “Sharon Quirk-Silva did not win that seat. “? What the hell? Sharon worked her butt off to win an election that after she got trounced in the primary no writer except one — me, in this story from three days post-primary — thought she would win. She ran a strong campaign. The notion that she just won because she was a woman of color — and I can’t think of what else besides that Kim is trying to say here — shows that Kim has somehow adopted the cynical political worldview of a wealthy 60-year-old Caucasian man: like, say, her boss, Ed Royce. As was true of Barack Obama’s African heritage, Quirk-Silva’s gender and ethnicity were generally considered liabilities before the election — and then somehow, inexplicably, recast as advantages thereafter. You know what turns a liability into an advantage? A good candidate, that’s what. (Special note to Friends of Norby: you may want to ask her what she means with the implication that “Quirk-Silva didn’t win the election, Norby lost it.” I doubt that it’s complimentary.)
“Disses Latinos“: Take a moment to appreciate the glee with which she explains that Asian Americans — “the minority group that is hugely popular” — come out to vote and Hispanics don’t. This is important because she is Asian and Quirk-Silva is Latina, she explains twice, I suppose because there is no whiteboard nearby where she can write down the equation and underline it. I’m glad to see the strong and growing Asian vote — which tends to lean Democratic, by the way, partially because of racist campaigns like the one her boss ran against Jay Chen — and am even contributing a couple of Asian daughters to the voting rolls next year. But lighting up at the notion that Latinos don’t vote as much is, let’s just say, needlessly divisive and unbefitting of a leader. It’s also crass: it’s the kind of statement that, if this were a football game, would be posted prominently in the Latinos’ locker room. Would Young Kim devote herself to facilitating Latino access to the polls — or would she try to block it? Well, which does it sound like to you?
“Explains Racialized Strategy“: The notion that Young Kim will win because — in an electorate that’s roughly 1/3 Asian, 1/3 Latino, and 1/3 Caucasian — her group will outvote Quirk-Silva’s group is not only crass to present in your first video interview with a portion of the electorate, but it’s also stupid and vile. (And this is not just because Quirk-Silva is half-Latino and half-Anglo, which means that by Young Kim’s simplistic theory she’d be expected to win 2/3 of the vote!)
As a sidebar before we go on — and I thought about making this the headline, but there will be plenty of time for that — Young Kim seems to think that she is running in AD-55, from which she just moved, rather than AD-65. I don’t mean that is some sort of metaphorical way; I mean that her discussion of demographics shows that she may well have confused the demographics of the two districts. (Or, she’s lying about them.)
AD-55 — which includes her former (let’s presume) La Habra, Beautiful Brea, Placentia, and Yorba Linda, along with Chino Hills and most of LA’s eastern San Gabriel Valley — was as of 2010 30% Latino, 31% Asian, and about 36% Non-Latino Caucasian. (The potential electorate, as of 2010 — meaning citizens of voting age — was 23% Latino, 26% Asian, and about 49% Non-Latino Caucasian.) That’s at least close to her “1/3-1/3-1/3″ quote; my recollection is that this district is notable for being about as close to a three-way ethnically balanced district as they come.
AD-65 — where she’s running, whether she realizes it or not — includes the list of cities she memorized and correctly reported. In 2010 it was 39% Latino, 24% Asian, and about 33% Non-Latino Caucasian. (The potential electorate in 2010 was 23% Latino, 22% Asian, and about 51% Non-Latino Caucasian.) That’s not nearly as close to her “1/3-1/3-1/3″ claim.
If you’re a reporter whom Young Kim would talk to — as I am not — maybe you can ask her what she meant.
Contrary to whatever cynical expectations Young Kim has, people do vote across racial lines. They vote based on things called issues. If she was recruited due to her being an Asian woman — and she flat out says that she was, so we can all quote her on that — then someone really ought to have considered finding out what she thought about the issues. She may be an attractive Asian woman on the outside, but inside her apparently beats the privileged heart of Ed Royce. She actually thinks that her being a woman neutralizes Quirk-Silva’s positions on women’s issues — which are aligned with most (though certainly not all) women voters — and that her being from a minority group means that Quirk-Silva has no advantage with minorities.
Let me explain it simply to Ms. Kim: Quirk-Silva is middle class, an elementary school teacher (who also knows why your gleeful attack on transgender students is crapola, but that’ll wait for another story), and comes from circumstances and lives in a home recognizable to many minority voters, who overall tend to be less wealthy and more put-upon than whites.
Kim, on the other hand, married a older man whose wealth allowed her to work as, essentially, a hobby and a way to fuel her future ambition. She is not like those unfortunate not-as-likely-to-vote minorities whom she disdains, because that’s the way she wanted it. An Asian candidate with values sympathetic to those of the minority electorate — and they care a lot more about whether someone supports flirting a government shutdown and default as Ed Royce does than whether they will do all they can to make the lives of transgender students just a little bit more miserable — would likely do well in AD-65. But if Sharon Quirk-Silva were a double-pigtailed blonde Germanic hausfrau — yet still sympathized with the concerns of minorities (and the middle-class of all colors) the way she does — she would still dominate Young Kim’s derriere with the electorate a year from now.
I want to go pick more funny things out of the transcript — like her saying that she’d rolled up her sleeves while wearing a sleeveless dress — but this is already long enough. I’ll do that another time. For now, I’ll end with a prediction that I keep on making, with ever-increasing confidence.
If he hasn’t already done so, Chris Norby is going to look at this video of Young Kim and say to himself that he would enjoy nothing better in the whole wide world than debating her continually next year — because right or wrong he has substantial knowledge and serious beliefs about policy and Young Kim apparently thinks that this election has and deserves the same dynamics as a vote for Homecoming Queen. I don’t know if he has a better chance in this election than Young Kim — but I’m pretty sure that this video won’t leave him thinking otherwise.
As for Mr. Garofali — if next year’s runoff election featured the knowledgeable and articulate Sharon Quirk-Silva and Chris Norby, those ideological opponents would likely produce debates worth broadcasting statewide. If it’s Quirk-Silva against Young Kim, then based on this clip of yours they would just show one attractive woman discussing policy and another trying to show how mean she can be to already suffering children in the name of Jesus. If you really think that the latter deserves a larger audience, you should be covering fashion rather than politics.
[Disclaimer. Interest duly stated: I am the North Vice Chair for the Democratic Party of Orange County (for which I do not purport to speak here), which includes all of AD-65 but the Anaheim portion. I have supported Sharon in the past, and will happily endorse Sharon again this year. No need to trust my word here; make your own judgments about her opponent based on this video!]