Vern here. Greg obviously put a lot of thought and research into this guide, and on the races I’m familiar with I MOSTLY agree with him. And in the others I would CAUTIOUSLY trust his judgment. But I think for this to be a useful voters’ guide, I need to condense it up here first. Then if you want to know the reasoning behind these choices you can read the essay below. Let’s hear some input from our Republican and independent friends!
Also, now that I’ve seen how long and pointless even this condensed version is, I’m going to delete most of the PRIMARIES that have only two or less candidates, because it doesn’t matter how or even IF you vote on those in June. So, we give you the Orange Juice June 2014 Primary Voter’s Guide:
State Executive Offices
- Governor – the Governor! (Jerry Brown.)
- Lite Guv – who cares? Vern has no problem with Gavin; Greg does.
- Secretary of State – Derek Cressman. We’re talking June primary. He won’t make it thru, but he’s the best.
- Controller – Betty Yee for sure!
- Treasurer – John Chiang for sure!
- AG – We want Kamala of course, but Vern finds it amusing (and edifying) to help Orly Taitz make it to spot 2 in June.
- Insurance Commissioner – Dave Jones for sure!
- Superintendent of Public Instruction – Tom Torlakson.
- Our Board of Equalization Member – ANYONE BUT HARKEY! (Democrats should vote Shahatit; Republicans should vote Van Tran.)
- Office 14 – KC Jones for sure.
- Office 20 – Helen Hayden! (see comments below, this Daniel Lamb article, and Greg’s final conversion.
- Office 27 – Joanne Motoike for sure.
- Office 35 – Carmen Luege for sure!
- Assessor – Jorge Lopez.
- Auditor-Controller – Frank Davies.
- Clerk-Recorder – Vern says Hugh Nguyen; Greg says Gary Pritchard, but has no problem with Hugh.
- DA – Greg Diamond for sure!
- Supervisor District 2 – Jim Moreno. Republicans and anti-labor people vote Mansoor. In short, ANYONE BUT STEEL.
- Supervisor District 4 – Shawn’ll win; but give underdog nice guy Rudy Gaona a vote to shake Shawn up a little!
- Supervisor District 5 – Lisa Bartlett.
- Board of Education District 2 – David Boyd for sure!
- Board of Education District 5 – Liz Dorn Parker for sure!
- CD 38 & 46 – Las Sanchez Sisters. Republicans, YOU pick your own sacrificial lambs.
- CD 45 – ANYONE BUT MIMI. Democrats vote Drew Leavens, Republican vote Greg Raths.
- CD 48 – ANYONE BUT DANA, as quixotic as that sounds. Republican Wendy Leece or Democrat Sue Savary.
- SD 32 – Tony Mendoza.
- SD 34 – Jose Solorio. Or, if you’re a Republican, Long Pham. ANYONE BUT JANET.
- SD 36 – You got no choice. [UPDATE 5/30: WAIT! WAIT! There’s now a write-in candidate against Pat Bates! His name is GARY KEPHART! No, not “Garry Capart.” Not “Gray Kapheart.” Not “Gerry Capehurt,” either. No, “Gephardt” was someone else. Look, why don’t you go get something to write this down? We can wait. OK: ready? G-A-R-Y. “Gary.” One “r.” K-E-P- … wait a sec … um … H-A-R-T. We thought that there was a “D” in there, but Gary wrote in and says that there’s no “D.” Don’t worry, it will count either way, “D” or no “D.” Yes, I’m sure. He’ll be on the ballot in November, using the name “Not Pat Bates.”]
- AD 55 – Gregg Fritchle.
- AD 72 – Joel Block.
- AD 73 – Wendy Gabriella.
- AD 74 – Greg likes Anila Ali, Vern likes Emanuel Patrascu; but Huntington Beach wants you to vote for Matt Harper so they can replace him on City Council. (Greg: Do not give in to Surf City selfishness!)
Yes on both Propositions 41 and 42!
NO on Orange County Measure A! (see comments below)
And Anaheim, No on measure D, another kleptocrat attempt to chip away at the Mayor’s strength and independence! (Vern’s addition).
Also in Anaheim (this from Greg): NO on MEASURE C — because in a package of otherwise unobjectionable technical reforms they’re trying to sneak through a proposal to combine the positions of City Treasurer (who protects city money) and City Finance Director (who plans how to spend it) into one job — and that would make corruption more likely by watering down the Treasurer’s watchdog function. AND IF YOU CAN’T UNDERSTAND A CHARTER REVISION PROPOSAL, VOTE “NO”!
OK, LONG VERSION. By Greg.
Now that (barring a successful appeal) I’m no longer a Vice-Chair of the Democratic Party of Orange County, I’m able to give ballot recommendations that include people other than endorsed Democrats. I’m still a Democrat, though, so don’t expect me to go wild. So let’s go! (I’m not going to dwell on the “one-on-one” contests like AD-65, AD-69, and CA-39 where both candidates will definitely go on to November.)
State Executive Offices
Governor: I’ll vote for Jerry Brown. He can be frustrating, but he did pretty much save the state by supporting Prop 30 and eliminating Redevelopment. Some other Democrats want to intervene in the Republican’s Governor’s race by supporting either Tim Donnelly or Neel Kashkari. I don’t feel like doing that. For those intent on supporting a lefty third party, I prefer Luis J. Rodriguez rather than Cindy Sheehan. Libertarians will do what they want to, no matter what I say.
Lt. Gov.: Given the number of excellent (but likely to be less well-funded) alternatives without my party, I don’t want “Business Democrat” Gavin Newsom to run for Governor — ever. But that doesn’t necessarily mean that I will vote for the other Democrat running, Eric Korevaar. I’ll have to read that link!
Secretary of State: Moderate Alex Padilla will probably be the only Democrat in the runoff, facing either Republican Pete Peterson or once-and-covertly-still-Republican Dan Schnur. I’ll vote for Padilla in November; for now, I’m happy with Democratic good-government reformer Derek Cressman.
Controller: Everyone, from whatever party or no party, should support grassroots hero Betty Yee. I’ll support John Perez in a runoff against Ashley Swearingen, if it comes to that, but I hope that it doesn’t. Betty needs your votes! ALL of your votes!
Treasurer: Current Controller John Chiang is one of the bravest and best Democrats that we have in state Government. Of course I’ll support him — and that reminds me, I need to read about Eric Korevaar.
Attorney General: Orange County, with its Democratic Party leadership diffident about her campaign (and perhaps even supportive of the Republican candidate, Steve Cooley) almost caused Kamala Harris to lose her race four years ago — luckily, she won. She’ll be re-elected easily. (I should definitely read up on Eric Kolevaar!) If, unlike me, you’re not a Harris fan, you’re pretty much screwed. Orly Taitz is the biggest name on the ballot against her, running as an independent. (Expect some Democrats to support her as a means of making the Republican Party whence she comes look bad.) Republicans completely failed to recruit a decent opponent, running one has-been and three never-weres, enough to split the vote and let someone like Orly or even Libertarian Jonathan Jaech make the runoff. Having Jaech make the race would be an interesting twist.
Insurance Commissioner: Incumbent Dave Jones is another Democrat who is about as good as they get — and another reason to look at Eric Kolevaar. He deserves unequivocal support.
Superintendent of Public Instruction: I know that Tom Torlakson doesn’t appeal to the “destroy universal public education” crowd, but I think highly of him.
State Board of Equalization, 4th District: I’ll vote for the only Democrat, Nader Shahatit from the Inland Empire. If I were a Republican, I’d vote for whoever could beat out ethical calamity Diane Harkey. Apparently, that’s most likely to be Van Tran. I might hate myself for voting for him — but I’d do it.
Office 14: This is the race with four contestants: Fred Fascenelli, Kevin Haskins, K.C. Jones, and Thomas Martin. If Martin is still actively campaigning, I haven’t seen it. I’ve appeared on one panel with everyone else; two with Jones. Haskins, the Republican party endorsed candidate who works for (and seems to reflect) Rackauckas, seems to be the front-runner, but Jones, who has the Labor Fed endorsement, seems like a strong candidate as well — and showed impressive credentials and values. My guess is that those two go into a November runoff — where Jones will have a serious shot. Fascinelli seems similar to Haskins — and I’d think will probably earn enough support to deny Haskins 50%, but not enough to overtake Jones, who will have my vote. All, so far as I know, are Republicans.
Office 20: This is the race between Judge Derek Johnson and Helen Hayden, who is among other things the wife of the man who ran against Loretta Sanchez in 2012. Johnson has the support of somewhere verging on all incumbent judges, who don’t like challenges from usurpers; Hayden, among other things, has the KFI Talk Radio vote, where she has aired blistering ads about Johnson’s character. Hayden is a very pleasant woman in person, and while she makes a plausible cases that she’s not too light in the resume to ascend to the bench, it’s a serious question in my mind. With Johnson, the overriding issue is off-the-cuff remarks that he made in a rape case, where he characterized the rape at issue before him as not as serious as one in which one would see vaginal bruising and tearing, suggesting some retrograde attitudes about resistance — venturing into Todd Akin “the body has ways” territory. He knew that this was a blunder almost immediately — but that’s not enough for many of us. I’m very torn here because I’m likely to be more favorable to Johnson’s (other) decisions than Hayden’s, but I don’t know that I can cast my vote for him. The Democratic Party did not endorse him, so I have plenty of company there.
Office 27: This is “every cloud has a silver lining” territory. Newly appointed Judge Joanne Motoike must have been unnerved when she found that she had an opponent, Wayne Phillips, in this race. So she has had to go out and campaign — and is probably the single most impressive candidate I’ve seen: wonderful background, temperament, intelligence, and communication skills. Phillips hasn’t been seen around, and even the Register endorsed her, despite her being a registered Democrat. So for the price of a challenge, she has gained widespread respect. If for some reason she loses, it will be a terrible commentary on Orange County voters., because there’s no reason I can see not to support her. I’ll vote for her this year and if I win my election and wants my seat in 2018, I just might have to give in to her.
Office 35: This is a face-off between Jeff Ferguson, another
OCGOP-endorsed Rackauckasian from the OCDA’s office, and Carmen Luege, an OC Register-endorsed Commissioner (sort of like a “junior judge”) who has widespread support from the sitting judiciary based on her skills. Both are Republicans. Ferguson is advertising all over the blogosphere and, I learned this week, at gun shows; I had presumed that he must be a lock. I’ve since heard that lots and lots of people really love Luege because she’s already shown a great judicial temperament on the bench — so when I vote for her it looks like I may be supporting a winner.
Only four countywide seats have competitive races. Supervisor seats 2, 4, and 5 and County Board of Education seats 2 and 5 are up as well. Your Sheriff (Sandra Hutchens), Treasurer (Shari Friedenrich), and County Superintendent of Schools (Al Mijares) are already set.
Assessor: Four years ago longtime incumbent Webster Guillory edged out former Board of Equalization member Claude Parrish to stay in his role. This race is a rematch — with a twist. A third candidate, longtime Assessor’s Office manager Jorge Lopez — he’s OK with your pronouncing it “George” — is in the race, and is by far the best equipped to run the office. He’s a reformer who has the distinction of being shown the door a few years ago because he blew the whistle on improper and unfair office practices that cost the taxpayers dearly — and the OCDA’s office kindly looked the other way. Parrish has the Republican Party endorsement, and as he doesn’t seem like obvious Assessor material is probably expected to just make sure that the wealthy property owners in the county never have to pay their fair share. But some Republicans seem to hate Parrish, which is why Denis Bilodeau was floated as a candidate against Parrish in the last week until Guillory agreed to run again at the last minute. By supporting the vigorous, experienced , and non-ideological Lopez, people can avoid whatever drama is going on among the bull elephants. He is the endorsed Democratic candidate, but was endorsed — after I made a stink about his being overlooked — on the basis of competence rather than ideological slant. Lopez will simply, respectfully, and quietly do a great job.
Auditor-Controller: Four Republicans (so far as I can tell) face off against Mike Dalati, who says he’s a Democrat but whom Democrats don’t believe is one, which is why he didn’t get the Democratic endorsement. (In fact, he didn’t even get a chance to deny that he was not a Democrat, which I thought was harsh. Like his fiancee, Assembly candidate Karina Onofre, he seems to be part of the “Art Pedroza slate,” which seeks to place conservative, mostly Republican, Latinos in office wherever possible and even when impossible.) Dalati seems affable, but didn’t list much in the way of qualifications. The establishment GOP Candidate, for those of you who think that Orange County is currently run well, is Eric Woolery. He has gobs of money, on top of the party endorsement, and will either win outright or make the runoff. Of the remaining ones, John Wayne Willard appears not to be active. That leaves Frank Davies — like Jorge Lopez, he’s a guy who has spent about three decades of his career in the office, but in this case also has the endorsement of the technocratic caretaker appointee Jan Grimes — and James Benuzzi, who impressed me when we were on a panel together but doesn’t seem to have as strong of a resume for the job. I could see myself voting for either, but am leaning towards the apolitical technocrat Davies. I’d support either of them or Dalati over Woolery in November, because if the Republican power structure prefers Woolery over Davies, it’s likely to be for a reason that would bother me greatly if I knew it.
Clerk-Recorder: The incumbent, Republican-endorsed Hugh Nguyen, seems to have done a decent job. His Democratic-endorsed opponent, Capistrano School Bopard member Gary Pritchard, is one of the good guys in our party — and would probably also do a decent job. I’ll support Pritchard, but won’t wail if Nguyen wins — and isn’t it nice to have at least one race like that this year? Monica Maddox, wife of Ken — and both have at times been Lopezes as well — is also running, as is Steve Rocco. I think that Maddox takes enough votes from Nguyen to force, but not herself make, a runoff.
District Attorney-Public Administrator: I recommend voting for me. (You were in suspense, right?) I’m the one who’s done more to oppose public corruption over the past year as a volunteer and in my private practice than my opponent has in 16 years of getting overpaid in public office.
Supervisor District 2: I’d vote for Jim Moreno. He has good values and he knows his stuff. If I were a Republican, I would not vote for Michelle Steel from the Palisades (or wherever), just giving even more power to her husband Shawn. Of the other two, I know Joe Carchio a little better, but at this point I’m sort of interested in knowing what Allan Mansoor would be like if he didn’t owe anybody. Other people will have to tell you which of them has a better shot of beating Steel.
Supervisor District 4: I’ll vote for Rudy Gaona. I’ve long considered Shawn Nelson pretty bearable, but he seems to have been headed in an unpleasant direction, from party dissident to party stalwart. His stupid and gratuitous abstention on the Veteran’s Memorial Cemetery — now being smothered by Irvine Mayor Steven Choi (a story I’ll tell later) — on the grounds that it was not the County’s business (and besides, we don’t want Sharon Quirk-Silva to get credit for it) was a turning point for me. Gaona’s a veteran, pro-cemetery, and a bright and decent guy. He’d be a boon to the Board — and Nelson might be improved by a little smackdown to remind him that it’s not so good to be a typical politician.
Supervisor District 5: An interesting race from a Democratic perspective — four candidates, all Republican. I had expected to support Deputy DA Joe Williams, who doesn’t seem to have a chance, but as I’ve watched the Republicans fight I’ve decided that I actually do have a horse in this tight three-person race — not as a matter of ideology, but as a matter of who I think has been treated most unfairly. The nasty things said about frontrunners Robert Ming and Frank Ury by each others’ partisans seem, so far as I can tell, to be true. The charges made against frontrunner Lisa Bartlett, by contrast, seem to be pretty sketchy. Her answers to the smear over the Transportation Corridor Agency contract “scandal” seemed fair. I know that this district is going to be represented by a Republican conservative, but maybe it’s better that that be someone who has been slammed and smeared unfairly by their own party. It may lead to a more independent set of eyes on the Board — and that would be good for the county. So, tentatively, I’m rooting for Bartlett rather than Williams.
OC Board of Education District 2: First, you need to get the lay of the land: for years, the OC Board of Education has been led by a moderate Republican-leaning coalition including Dr. John Bedell (District 4), Long Pham (District 1) and the two people up for office this year: Liz Parker, who is discussed below, and David Boyd, the incumbent in this seat. They did a competent, “adults in the room” type job and did not often make the headlines, which is good. But some people wanted a more radically activist and religious — and if you think we’re getting into “science vs. religion in textbooks territory, you’re right — conservative Republican Board. Then, in 2012, the moderate candidate in District 3 died, and radical conservative Ken Williams Jr. took office. Then, in District 1, radical conservative Robert Hammond got shunted by the party into the race against Long Pham. He likely would have lost that race except that Art Pedroza decided to run against him, bringing in Eleazar Elizondo to split Pedroza’s Latino vote, because he did not want Pedroza elected. In the resulting vote splitting, Hammond was elected — and he and Williams have been in a 3-2 minority on important issues related to moderate and competent education versus extreme and ideological education. Tom Pollitt wants to be the third vote in that coalition (or, see below, the fourth.) That’s why it is very very important that if you live in the Second District, you vote for David Boyd. We want competence from our County school board, not headlines about their bringing lawsuits and such.
OC Board of Education District 5: Read the above paragraph on District 2 for background on the OC Board of Ed — but this race would be interesting even without it. It pits moderate, competence-oriented, Republican Liz Dorn Parker against Laguna Niguel Mayor looking for a new gig Linda Lindholm — who happens to be the wife of the Chair of the conservative activist Lincoln Club. Despite having a perfectly good 30-year incumbent from their party running, the OCGOP has gone bonkers in its advocacy for Lindholm. With Lindholm as the third vote in the coalition, the board can move towards automatic (rather than sensible and merit-based) approval of charter schools proposals — the OCBE mostly gets proposals that have already been rejected on the merits by individual cities, so it’s not anti-charter so much as anti-bad-proposal — and a swerve towards anti-science activism. And as if that’s not enough, they would love to be able to litigate matters such as exempting OC from Common Core — which, however you feel about those standards on their own or versus No Child Left Behind — is an extremely expensive proposition for which most people don’t even realize they may be voting! You know those races that you look back years later and ask “how the hell did we let that happen?” This is one of those races. If you don’t want expensive bills for quixotic extremist quests, go all of the way down the ballot and vote for Liz Dorn Parker.
Congressional District 38: Linda Sanchez is running against some Republicans who won’t beat her, no matter which one La Palma voters choose.
Congressional District 39: Ed Royce vs. Pete Anderson race in November, no matter what.
Congressional District 45: The race to replace John Campbell has a clear front-runner — the “ought to be convicted of perjury right along with fellow State Senator Rod Wright” party darling Mimi Walters — and two candidates who are much more worthy of consideration in November: Democrat Drew Leavens and Republican Col. Greg Raths. I’ve seen these guys interact several times — and while I agree more with Leavens I have a lot of respect for Rath’s thoughtfulness and ethical posture. So, here’s what I propose: decide whether you lean more Democratic or more Republican, regardless of whether you belong to a party, and if it’s Democratic then vote for Leavens and if it’s Republican than vote for Raths. This is a race for second place, so if you care about such things you should probably take part in that race even if you actually favor Walters. Surely she can spare the votes, right? And if so many people do that that she somehow finishes out of the Top Two — well, these two guys will put on a high-minded, respectful, and interesting campaign of ideological contrast, and best of all you won’t have a morally compromised member of Congress.
Congressional District 46: Loretta Sanchez will win re-election, but who will be added to the pile of the vanquished? It’s up to you, Republicans, but I’d recommend that if you don’t vote for Loretta, you vote for Ehab Atalla. (Out of fairness, I should note that Atalla is a Democrat.) Between Adam Nick, John Cullum, and Carlos Vasquez — Vasquez is running ads on Pedroza’s site, so make your decision that way.
Congressional District 47: Alan Lowenthal has done a great job and would have my vote. One of the Republicans running is his 2012 opponent Gary DeLong and the other is a libertarian guy whose name I don’t recall. If you’re not supporting Lowenthal, vote for the one who isn’t DeLong.
Congressional District 48: Dana Rohrabacher should be ousted so that coastal OC can begin its process of recovery from having him represent it on a national stage. I’m presuming that Republicans won’t vote for a Democrat, no matter how much I whine, so I’d suggest that they (and like-leaning independents) vote for Wendy Leece, who is conservative but is good-government oriented, fundamentally sane, and has been brave enough to stand up to Costa Mesa’s anti-government vandals. If you are a Democrat, or willing to vote like one, I hope that you will vote for the Democratic Party endorsed candidate, Suzanne Savary. Her opponent Robert Banuelos seems decent as well, but she won’t likely make it if the vote is split. A Leece vs. Savary race in November would assure competent representation and, as in CA-45, would allow for a high-minded campaign about issues. The central coast could, I’m sure, get used to that.
Congressional District 49: Darrell Issa vs. David Peiser is set for November.
32nd State Senate District: I like Tony Mendoza to replace Senator Ron Calderon; others prefer Sally Havice. I don’t know much about Carlos Arvizu, and Irella Perez. The sole Republican is , Mario Guerra. So, central Buena Park — good luck and let us know how it turns out.
34th State Senate District: I’m no big fan of former Assemblyman Jose Solorio, but he’s the only Dem on the ballot, and he’s a good vote on most issues and now knows that we’ll be watching him on every committee vote, and it maintains the Dem supermajority, so that’s how I’d vote. Vern
would apparently prefer that everyone wants those who don’t like Jose to vote for Long Pham, see his comment below, with which I expect Jose would agree, largely on the grounds that he is not Republican Supervisor Janet Nguyen. I’ve actually thought that Janet was reasonably tolerable in the past — but the Cal-Optima scandal (and the current DA’s whitewash of it) leave me hoping that she doesn’t make the runoff.
36th State Senate District: Pat Bates is running unopposed on the ballot, but some guy in San Diego is supposedly running a write-in campaign, so she’ll have an opponent in November no matter what you do. If you’d prefer to run you’re own write-in campaign as well, contact the Registrar of Voters for more info. [Update: And Kerry Gephardt — no, sorry, that’s Gary Kephart — did so! You can write in his name!]
55th Assembly District: I will proudly be voting for Gregg Fritchle, and I hope that you do as well. He’s a good, honest, and smart guy — even if he looks and acts like an exaggerated version of me, something that most of you can’t likely even imagine. The race is on the Republican side, between Philip Chen, Ling-Ling Chang, and Steve Tye. I’ve gotten push polls from I think both the Chen and Chang campaigns, which is enough to lead me to recommend that people not sufficiently perspicacious to vote for Fritchle should instead vote for Tye. I do not like push polls. I don’t like Tye either, but at least his name could lead to some funny puns in headlines. Seriously, do whatever you want.
65th Assembly District: Sharon Quirk-Silva vs. Young “The Bigoted Buttkicker” Kim is set for November.
68th Assembly District: Don Wagner vs. Anne “The Non-Bigoted Non-Buttkicker” Cameron is set for November. (Seriously, I’d like to see Cameron debate Young Kim, to make her feel some shame.)
69th Assembly District: Tom Daly vs. Cecilia Iglesias is set for November. [Update: OK, not quite. There’s a third candidate, Sherry Walker, who somehow failed to make an impression on me. So, given all the hype about Iglesias, let’s make that “almost set.” Right, Ceci?]
72nd Assembly District: Travis Allen faces endorsed Democratic candidate Joel Block and last cycle’s last-place finisher, perennial candidate and nominal Democrat Albert Ayala. Vote for Block. And it’s important that you do, because some Allen supporting pranksters may vote for Ayala just to deny Allen a real competitor in November.
73rd Assembly District: I am 100% without reservation for moderate Democrat Wendy Gabriella (and not simply because my daughter serves as her campaign Treasurer.) She’s well-matched to the district and is intelligent and principled enough to do a great job — until she likely got knocked off in 2016 if the Republican Party can nominate someone reasonable. Unfortunately for the Republicans, “regular” conservatives Anna Bryson and Bill Brough (who loses points for being Diane Harkey’s Chief of Staff) and semi-regular conservative Paul Glaab (who loses points for doing an atrocious job of Chairing the OCTA two years ago) are likely going to split the “not entirely crazy Republican” vote, giving the spot against Gabriella to former violent convicted felon (whose record has now been expunged) Rancho Santa Margarita Councilman Jesse Petrilla who has the honor of actually being too violent and extreme even for South OC. I think that Petrilla wins — and then , believe it or not, loses to Gabriella in November. Republicans can handle two years of a moderate, fiscally conservative Democrat while they pick one — only one — non-insane Republican to run against her in 2016. But if young excitable boy Mr. Petrilla gets in, he’s going to be there for 12 long years — and the Republican Party will be paying and paying and paying for the error of not clearing the field for either Bryson or Brough. I won’t actually endorse Petrilla here — he’d be the worst of the lot in Sacramento, and “worse than Glaab” is a strong statement — but if he wins I’ll be giving Gabriella a congratulatory phone call. So: vote your conscience, if you have one!
74th Assembly District: On the Republican side, my sense is that the general expectation seems to be that Keith Curry is leading, Emanuel Patrascu is next (with support from more fringy types, but not in a frightening “Jess Petrilla-like” way), and Matt Harper is running a distant third, which surprises me if so. The Democratic-endorsed candidate, Anila Ali, would easily be able to make the runoff were it not for the presence on the ballot of recent transplant from the Republican Party Karina Onofre. I have publicly wondered whether Onofre, another from the “Pedroza slate,” was simply in the race to take enough votes away from Ali that Patrascu would make the runoff. Having now met and spoken to her a few times, I think that she is sincerely offended by Republican positions on Latinos — and by the Republican interest in her only because she is a Latina whose presence offers them some political cover. So while I would still vote for Ali — Onofre is simply too conservative for my taste, regardless of party — it is without rancor. And if Republican women want to support her, and possibly set up an Onofre-Ali runoff (don’t bet on this outcome), great! The only other recommendation I have for Republican voters is: not Harper. Please, not Harper.
Proposition 41: Yes for veterans’ housing!
Proposition 42: My party says yes, but I can’t really figure it out.
Measure A: Vern says to vote “no.”