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I’m on the host committee for an event tonight that I hope that you’ll attend, especially if you’re from South County. (You don’t have to be; I and others will be making the trek from South County.) The event is for energetic AD-73 candidate Wendy Gabriella, who was the sole Democrat in the race where unimaginably corrupt State Senator (and now Board of Equalization candidate) Diane Harkey’s former Chief of Staff, Bill Brough, defeated fellow Republicans Anna Bryson, Jesse Petrilla, and Paul Glaab for the right to take on Wendy in the runoff. (Another expected candidate, Steve Baric, had pulled out of the race earlier.)
Wendy is well suited to her district — fiscally conservative while more libertarian on social issues, and is a highly accomplished college professor and attorney who as part of the legislatively dominant Democratic Party could bring new resources to South County for the first time in a long time. Brough — well, he has shown that he can put up with having Diana Harkey as a boss, at least for a while.
If young Brough wins, he’s liable to be in the Assembly for 12 years, which certainly has to chap fans of Petrilla and of Bryson. (If there are fans of Glaab out there: them too.) The question for Republicans is whether they’re willing to concede the seat, until 2027, to this callow youth — or put in the perfectly reasonable Ms. Gabriella for a couple of years during which they can roll the dice again and see if they can nominate anyone more compelling. But that’s their problem, not mine; as a Democrat, I can get used to another do-nothing, no-effect-having, career Republican politician from South County. (I’m just sort of surprised that South County can live with it.)
For people who don’t usually like politicians due to what is sometimes described as their “plastic” nature, Wendy is very refreshing: warm, intelligent, vivacious, a complete policy wonk, and a real hoot. She’s been the most energetic campaigner around (with the possible exception of Team Huntington Beach) — she got the most signatures in lieu, I’m told, of any candidate of any party for the June primary — and is just a refreshing change from “politics as usual.”
As to anyone wondering why I (despite being a strong admirer and supporter of Wendy) am on the host committee for an event way way down in South County, given that others — particularly Mike Kinslow, but also Denise Penn and Anita Narayana — have done the lion’s share of the work: let me explain. I have a funny feeling Kinslow and the others added my name (with my permission) as a host because they hoped that perhaps, after starving readers of this blog for new stories for two full days in the middle of the week, I would write about the event the morning that it was scheduled and generate a larger amount of interest because it had been so long since there had been anything new to talk about here.
If so, it was a cunning plan; let’s see if it worked.
Seriously, come by tonight: the food will be great, the price (as low as $25!) is almost ridiculously affordable, and the cause is just. If you haven’t met Wendy, now’s the time to do it. People of all political persuasions are welcome — don’t worry, she’s used to working across the aisle. As you’ll see from the graphic, it runs from 6:00 to 9:00 at the Portola Room of El Adobe de Capistrano, at 31891 Camino Capistrano, SJC, 92675. You can RSVP through Wendy’s website at www.wendygabriella.com or at the info in the graphic — but even if you haven’t RSVP’d, you can still show up. See you there!