Hunt wins AOCDS endorsement for O.C. Sheriff

Breaking news – Lt. Bill Hunt, the Chief of Police in San Clemente, won the endorsement of the Association of Orange County Deputy Sheriffs (AOCDS) this evening as their secret balloting drew to a close. This is huge news, which I received directly from Tim Whitacre, who has been serving as Hunt’s campaign advisor. The incumbent Sheriff, Mike Carona, has been in all the headlines of late, for all the wrong reasons, and while he has more money than Hunt, this bit of news might end up being the straw that broke the camel’s back.

I met with Commander Ralph Martin a few weeks ago and found him to be intelligent and engaging, and very experienced, but he really needed to come up with the AOCDS endorsement in order to truly compete with Carona. Now that Hunt has prevailed, Martin really ought to think about pulling out and endorsing Hunt.

I have noted of late that Martin has picked up support over at OC Blog, and Frank Mickadeit, over at the O.C. Register, wrote about him this week as well. However, he just hasn’t picked up that much support in general, Orange County, and now the AOCDS endorsement of Hunt has taken the wind out of his sails.

I like Martin, but I am now announcing my endorsement of Hunt. He is the only Carona opponent who is picking up steam and the AOCDS endorsement should really make a huge difference for him. Carona is withering on the vine, and it is really a matter of time before George Jaramillo completely unloads on him. My guess is that Jaramillo has a lot of legitimate evidence of unethical actions taken by Carona, and he certainly has a bone to pick with his ex-boss and ex-friend.

I’ll say this for Whitacre – he never quits. He has now beaten the Carona machine twice this month – first denying them the endorsement of the Republican Party of Orange County Central Committee and now costing them the AOCDS endorsement. You really have to wonder when Team Carona will fire Jon Flieschman. Lately he just has not bee doing the job for Carona. Then again, Carona is such damaged goods at this juncture that perhaps no consultant will be able to save him.

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"Admin" is just editors Vern Nelson, Greg Diamond, or Ryan Cantor sharing something that they mostly didn't write themselves, but think you should see. Before December 2010, "Admin" may have been former blog owner Art Pedroza.