OC GOP registration scandal far from over

The OC Register published an article yesterday about the ongoing OC GOP voter registration scandal in central Orange County. The thrust of the article is that legislators in Sacramento are now looking at ways to prevent similar scandals in the future. According to the article, “Signature gatherers earned as much as $7 for each GOP registration. Voter- registration experts believe such payments, known as bounties, are an incentive for fraud.” Exactly right – this is of course something that my OC GOP Central Committee colleage and co-blogger Tim Whitacre has been saying for a long time. And it turns out he is not the only one doing so. Allan Bartlett, over at his Powder Blue Report blog, is reporting that none other than former OC GOP Chairman Tom Fuentes is unhappy with this scandal. Here is what Bartlett had to say about this:

Tonight our Irvine Republican Council had the pleasure to host former OC GOP Party chairmen, the Honorable Tom Fuentes.

Mr. Fuentes talked to us about his lifetime of work for the Republican Party. He touched on a couple of different issues. He wanted everyone in the room to introduce themselves and give one word about what he should talk about. The issues ranged from leadership, endorsement process, The New Majority, Illegal Immigration, party philosophy, Irvine Elections, motivating voters, Arnold, and a few others. Recently he was appointed by Speaker Hastert to a commission on election integrity. He spoke of his work monitoring elections down in Nicaragua over the years. He then shifted gears and spoke about Arnold and the base of the party’s lack of enthusiasm for the governor. He voted for Tom McClintock he said. He cracked back on the “tea & crumpets”(my words) element(read as the New Majority) of the party and spoke of his disdain about how groups like they, have corrupted the political process with their large campaign donations. All they want to do is write big checks and get their picture taken with the governor. He also blasted them for funding the latest registration scandal in Central OC. He says the party needs to get back to clean registrations by people talking to their neighbors instead of hired guns trying to get any warm body it can to sign. We saw what happened with that program. It gave the party a black eye. Thanks again NM. It was classic Tom Fuentes. He believes as I and most other party activists, that the volunteers of the party are the most important thing in winning campaigns. He thinks that this is going to be a bruising election and not a cake walk for Arnold like a lot of people think.

I concur Tom! It should be noted here that Fuentes also spoke up at the last OC GOP Central Committee meeting regarding the flawed manner in which the party endorses incumbents for non-partisan offices. He asked Scott Baugh, the current OC GOP Chairman, if we could push back the endorsement until after the filing period, so that we could take into consideration any new GOP candidates that might emerge in the interim, to run against the incumbents. Baugh shot him down – saying that the current system was designed when Fuentes was in charge. I thought it was an insulting thing to say to Fuentes, and I am pretty sure it was noticed by many of my colleagues on the committee.

I have a feeling that many of the veterans on the OC GOP Central Committee are finally questioning the way the OC GOP machine is mishandling our party. They supported OC Sheriff Mike Carona, but then had to deal with his post-election meltdown against his opponent, Lt. Bill Hunt, and his latest request for nearly $400,000 from the OC Board of Supervisors, for what amounts to a bogus poll designed to glorify him. Moreover, the latest shenanigans pulled by Adam Probolsky and his mates did not go over well with everyboidy on the committee. Our Parliamentarian, Kermit Marsh, disagreed with Baugh and looked upset the rest of the evening. I believe that this is all going to come to a head soon – and perhaps we are seeing that with Fuentes and Marsh now. Perhaps Whitacre and I will be reinforced soon – quite honestly, it can’t happen soon enough.

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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.