College student Ryan Gene Williams needs your help in Assembly race!

College student’s Assembly campaign needs your help!

On the surface, it doesn’t make a lot of sense for a twenty-year-old to run for the state legislature, that is exactly what Ryan Gene Williams, a student at Orange Coast College, is doing. Williams is the latest Republican to try to win back the 69th Assembly District, which has been in Democrat hands for some time. The incumbent, adulterer Tom Umberg, is running for the 34th State Senate District. Ironically, the former representative in the 69th, Orange County Supervisor Lou Correa, is also considering running for the 34th. Correa’s old Assembly seat is being pursued by three Democrats: Santa Ana Council Members Jose Solorio and Claudia Alvarez, and businessman Armando de la Libertad.

The 69th Assembly District includes most of Santa Ana, and parts of Garden Grove and Anaheim. It has a majority of Democrat voters, but not by much. 44% of the district’s voters are Democrats, compared to 35.5% Republicans, and a whopping 20.3% decline to state or other parties. Voters in this district recalled liberal Democrat Nativo Lopez from the Santa Ana School Board, and a majority of them voted to recall Governor Gray Davis and elected Arnold Schwarzenegger. Barbara Coe, a major force against illegal immigration, holds her meetings in Garden Grove.

So what to make of Williams’ chances? For one thing, he needs help from his own party. He actually works in the Republican Party of Orange County’s headquarters. However, the party has not yet stepped up to help him. I know how that game works. Generally folks don’t want to invest in unknown candidates, or presumably lost causes. But anything Williams does will necessitate a response from the Democrats, in the general election. That will be money that won’t be spent against neighboring Republican candidates in other districts. Moreover, Williams, by running in this majority Democrat district, is taking one for the team, so to speak. He shouldn’t have to go it alone.

And thank God he is not quite alone. Already Williams has started to put together an informal team of activists and advisors. But he readily admits that he lacks the funds to print up postcards, or make campaign t-shirts. Nor does he have any paid campaign staff. Williams recently announced that he had received a $1,000 contribution. That is great news – I don’t know the source of the money, but I do know that the usual suspects ought to be contributing at least some amount to his effort. The Orange County Lincoln Club, the New Majority, and Scott Baugh and his cronies should all be stepping up to the plate and helping the eternally energetic Williams. He has not given up hope, and neither should they.

I have advised Williams to focus on voter registration, and on building alliances with other Republican campaigns that overlap his, such as the candidates for the 47th Congressional District, and the 34th State Senate District. When we lost the 69th, the incumbent, Jim Morrissey, refused to help Bob Dornan, the congressional candidate who was trying to take his seat back from Loretta Sanchez. Rob Hurtt, who then presided in the 34th State Senate District, likewise ran his campaign without much teamplay with the others. All went down in flames. Hopefully party leaders have learned from this debacle and will indeed work together in Central Orange County this time around.

To find out more about Williams, go to You can email him at You can call him at 949-400-1435. If you would like to send a contribution to his campaign, send it to 1401 Meriday Lane, Santa Ana, CA 92706. Make the check out to “Ryan Gene Williams for State Assembly.” I know he’ll appreciate it. I’m sending my check today.

About Art Pedroza