Democrats can pick up the 68th Assembly District in 2008

Could the Democrats pick up the 68th Assembly District in two years? Despite the Republican registration edge, I think so. The incumbent, Van Tran (pictured on the left with President George W. Bush), was mired in problems this year after his wife’s legal issues came to the forefront.

Tran also erred by drafting Trung Nguyen for the 1st Supervisorial District, instead of backing either Janet Nguyen or the machine favorite, Carlos Bustamante. Trung will be wiped out on Feb. 6, which will leave Tran with a sullied reputation. Indeed, if Tom Umberg wins, Tran will get a big chunk of the blame.

Let’s look at the numbers:

According to Red County/OC Blog, the 68th AD is 45% GOP to 31% Dem.

That means 24% of the voters in the district are either Decline to State or are members of third parties.

Here’s how the Democrats can beat Tran:

Run a caucasian candidate, again, and encourage third party Vietnamese candidates to run, as representatives of the Libertarian Party, the Green Party, the American Independent Party, etc.

So whom should the Democrats run? I think that Garden Grove Councilman Mark Rosen could beat Tran. So could former Garden Grove Mayor Bruce Broadwater. But they are both friends of Tran. Al Snook is not in great health, so he’s out. Last year’s Democrat candidate, Paul Lucas, seems to want to run again. He is a good guy, but he lacks Tran’s resume. Running an experienced local elected official would make more sense.

I will leave it to my readers to come up with some ideas. The bottom line is that Tran is damaged goods. Latino voters will blame him for the hateful rhetoric that came out of Trung during his Supervisorial campaign. Republican voters in the district who are not Vietnamese might back a white Democrat – particularly if he has a good civic resume. And running third party Vietnamese candidates would would wound Tran in the general, perhaps mortally.

Plus, 2008 is a presidential election year. The Democrats will turn out in huge numbers, sensing blood in the water, as the Bush legacy continues to destroy the GOP. Meanwhile, California Republicans will likely stay at home as they watch the nation turn blue before their eyes. I am assuming of course that the GOP will run someone who cannot beat either Hillary Clinton or Barack Obama. So far the local Reeps are enamored with Mitt Romney, but I find it hard to believe that the religious right will back a Mormon. They will stay home. Newt Gingrich, Rudy Giuliani and John McCain are all damaged goods. I don’t see a single strong candidate coming out of the GOP ranks, at least not currently.

The Republicans might see this coming and perhaps urge Tran to move along. Supervisor Janet Nguyen (assuming she wins on Feb. 6) would be able to challenge him in the primary, and maybe even take him out altogether. She would be doing her party a favor.

About Admin

"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.