Dem Pre-Endorsement Mtg Results: Chen, Min, Keirstead, and (Temporarily) Levin





A tally in the CA-39 race shows that Jay Chen took almost 50% of the State Party delegates’ votes, followed by Phil Janowicz with almost 30%.  This result would not make Chen eligible for endorsement — let alone putting him onto the consent calendar at the convention — and may not be enough to winnow down the race given that the three candidates with the worst performance (by a long shot) are also the wealthiest and may presume that they will do better if they appeal directly to voters.  If so, then this becomes a very good result not only for Chen, and to some extent Janowicz, but also for Republicans.  (Sorry, folks, but this is not the site you come to for happy-talk PR.)

Here are the raw vote totals, according to a post by Jay Chen and confirmed with a DPOC official:

Chen, 27; Janowicz, 16; Jammal, 8; Thorburn, 2; No Endorsement, 2; Cisneros, 1; Tran, 1; Person no one has heard of 0.

I can understand the basis for every vote case except for this “No Endorsement” vote.  Normally, I’m fine with “No Endorsement,” but in this race it’s the equivalent of “Let’s split the vote and let the Republicans win.”  Who does that?  [Note: Now knowing who did do that, I understand why — but it was still a bad move.  Not wanting to take a position is OK, but in that case you simply do not vote rather than voting “No Endorsement.”  The former counts towards the denominator and prevents anyone from reaching 50%; the latter doesn’t.  Had both of the people who voted “No Endorsement” just not voted at all, Jay Chen gets 50% and then ALL OF THE CANDIDATES not just Chen! — could be competing for the endorsement at the convention itself.

Note to Gil Cisneros: I like you and would like to talk to you seriously about other offices to consider.  The obvious one is AD-55, where I am confident that Gregg Fritchle would step aside for you.  Other possibilities include CA-22 and county offices.  My understanding is that you hired some top consultants just for this endorsement caucus vote — but that the only vote you got came from Yahaira Ortiz, who works for — what’s the worst name I could say here? — yes, scandal plagued State Senator Tony Mendoza!  Your “friends” are not your friends and your “enemies” are not your enemies.  Let us help you.

Note to Mai-Khanh Tran:  Just run against Michelle Steel, for the love of all that is holy, and SAVE CAL-OPTIMA!

Information from the three other races is still on its way.


Update from DPOC’s Farrah Khan:  Forde 7%, Kia 5%, Min 67%, Porter 15%. Dave moves on to the caucus at convention

Dave Min apparently took 67% of the vote — enough to make him eligible to be endorsed at the convention for CA-45, but not to put him onto the consent calendar.  He was not my choice, but that’s a pretty convincing margin unless someone argues convincingly that he lied and cheated his way to victory.  If Porter took the lion’s share of the rest of the votes, the others should left the professors fight it out.

(After the Update:)  Had Porter done better, I’d expect her to stay in and the others to leave.  Given reports I’m hearing that Min used some shady tactics, including some questionable assertions about his opponents (I’m being delicate here), I wonder whether this field will be whittled down.  All three other candidates may join forces and fire on Min with convention delegates; the only question is whether his behavior has earned it enough for them to have an effect.

(BIG UPDATE:)  If I knew this rule, I had forgotten about it, but: under the screwy rules of the CDP, Min’s receiving between 50% and 67% of the vote means that not only he can seek the endorsement at the CDP convention, but so can Porter (as well as Kia and Forde.)  Contrast that with CA-39, above.


Update from DPOC’s Farrah Khan: Keirstead 65%, Oatman 10%, Rouda 23%, Omar 1%, Payne 0%. Hans moves on to the endorsement caucus.

Early word is that Harley Rouda Hans Keirstead won — see, I told you that people can’t tell the H-Boys apart! — but we’re not sure by how much.  We’ll have more info later.  More info: Keirstead reportedly received 65% of the vote — enough so that he is eligible to be endorsed at the convention, but not enough for him to get onto the consent calendar.  Nurses of all stripes, please keep your money out of this primary fight.  You have SO MANY better priorities!

(After the update: Omar Siddiqui, Rachel Payne — get out.  You have too many people to pass.  If Rouda and Oatman want to make this a race, they’re entitled, though if I were them I probably wouldn’t do it.)

Reiterating the update: Rouda and Oatman can also try to get the nomination at the CDP convention thanks to Keirstead’s falling between 50% and 70%.


Tentative update from Farrah: “(I left before these numbers were reviewed so minor changes may occur): Applegate 35 votes, Levin 60 votes, Kerr 0 votes, Jacobs 5 votes, Prejean 0 votes, 3 no endorsement votes.

In CA-49, Mike Levin seems to have scored a solid victory — although at this point it’s only enough to make him eligible to be endorsed at the convention and not nearly enough for him to make it onto the consent calendar.  Doug Applegate (whose strength is activists from outside the party structure) will push for a “no endorsement” stance — and I expect that he will get it.  Unsurprisingly, there are also reports of voting irregularities and of at least one Applegate vote being held back and not counted.  This will be a major brouhaha at the convention.

Because Levin will not be able to attract many actual local activists if nominated, expect for large contributions to be laundered — legally (well, probably legally) — through the DPOC and other party-insider-dominated central committees for the rental of activists from outside the district.  (OC Young Democrats may support him, but their track record at providing quality level of field work has not been good.)  Levin might compete with Harkey, but will lose to Col. Rocky Chavez if he’s the Republican in the runoff — as Republican activists jump into the race and Democrats go further south to fight against Duncan Hunter.

(After the update: this will go to the convention.  Levin did well, with the party’s thumb pressing with full force onto his side of the scale, but not well enough.  Expect a no endorsement vote coming out of the convention, which is safe, fair, and fine with me.)

Again with the update: not only can Levin seek the Democratic party endorsement next month, but so can Applegate, Jacobs, and others.


Four seats, four male winners.  Happy “Year of the Woman,” everyone!

This post will be updated, and updates will likely be made in the above text itself rather than appearing separately and being marked as such.

(I’m off to a night out with visiting family, so you may just be seeing updates from Vern for a while….)


About Greg Diamond

Somewhat verbose attorney, semi-retired due to disability, residing in northwest Brea. Occasionally runs for office against bad people who would otherwise go unopposed. Got 45% of the vote against Bob Huff for State Senate in 2012; Josh Newman then won the seat in 2016. In 2014 became the first attorney to challenge OCDA Tony Rackauckas since 2002; Todd Spitzer then won that seat in 2018. Every time he's run against some rotten incumbent, the *next* person to challenge them wins! He's OK with that. Corrupt party hacks hate him. He's OK with that too. He does advise some local campaigns informally and (so far) without compensation. (If that last bit changes, he will declare the interest.)