GOP candidate in the 69th Assembly District ignored by local Republican officials

Ryan Gene Williams, the 20 year-old college student vying for the GOP nomination in the 69th Assembly District, is running uncontested in the primary – but apparently that does not matter to Alberta Christy and Carlos Bustamante, two of the Republicans serving on the Santa Ana City Council. Neither one has so much as given Williams the time of day, and Christy went as far as to tell him that she would not endorse him, due to his lack of political experience. Nice. The young man does us a favor by running for a district without a GOP candidate, and this is how Christy thanks him? Unbelievable.

Christy served for many years on the Republican Party of Orange County Central Committee – and she was a prominent member of their Executive Committee. However, she has dialed back on Republican politics since getting elected to the City Council in Santa Ana, and now apparently she is loathe to support a Republican for the local Assembly District. Could her antagonism stem from the fact that two of her colleagues on the council are running for the Democrat nomination? Has she promised one of them her support? Jose Solorio is known for making deals with Republicans, and Claudia Alvarez is a favorite of the California Chamber of Commerce. It is certainly possible that Christy is backing one of them instead of Williams.

As for Bustamante, he is not doing anything to endear himself to local Republicans. Tim Whitacre, the noted GOP activist and Central Committee member has told me on more than one occassion that Bustamante needs to start backing GOP candidates – and he’s right. Brett Franklin made the same mistake, when he was on the Santa Ana City Council. He later ran for other offices and found it hard to get support from the local GOP establishment. Franklin may have learned his lesson, as he is now an elected member of the OC GOP Central Committee. Bustamante would do well to learn from his example.

Solorio, in the meantime, is struggling since he lost the local party endorsement to activist Armando De La Libertad. Alvarez didn’t even try to get endorsed. I smell an upset on the Dem side of the aisle. De La Libertad certainly has more personality and good looks than Solorio, and he is far more popular with the base than the mean-spirited Alvarez. This race could end up featuring De La Libertad and Williams in the general. They are both nice guys, and they have both promised to run clean campaigns. Wouldn’t that be nice for a change? (See Umberg vs. Correa for the alternative).

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