OC GOP releases Twits’ Gallery of Re-election Endorsements.

Who says the ironically named “Liberal OC” blog is utterly useless? Well, actually everybody does, but that’s not really fair. Dan C often posts, under his own name, undigested information that he doesn’t know what to do with, and on occasion that can be a useful find.

For example, if Dan hadn’t posted last week that the OC GOP had voted to proudly endorse ALL TWELVE of their eligible OC incumbents for re-election, it may have taken us ANOTHER week to learn of that unremarkable news. (As an aside, Dan’s chosen 50’s-era “it’s a man’s world” image for his post seems inappropriate when 8 of the 12 candidates are female, but that’s enough about Dan.)

To hear the following nine mediocrities named off in a list, is really … something. Something, I would think, embarrassing to that Party, if it were susceptible to that phenomenon. Well anyway, let’s see what our Republican muckety-mucks have to say for their exciting 2022 line-up:

“At our final Central Committee meeting of the year, the Republican Party of Orange County proudly voted to endorse our Republican incumbents ahead of a competitive 2022 midterm election.

“We endorsed these candidates early because they have earned not only our endorsement, but they have earned reelection by their constituents. From Congress to Orange County our Republican legislators have fought hard for our communities. If we want to flip the House of Representatives, make gains in the state legislature and protect Orange County – we must act now to defend our Republican seats and defeat the Democrats in targeted races throughout the county. Our endorsement is the first step in that process.”

So, these Republican incumbents, particularly these two Congresswomen, four assemblymembers and two BoE church ladies have earned this support because “they’ve fought hard for our communities?” To what communities do they refer? Do you remember any of these people fighting hard for your community? I sure don’t. Well, let’s get into the weeds. Kim and Steel?

In Congress, Young Kim and Michelle Steel have impressive legislative records for first-term representatives. They have worked to be problem solvers in the minority, finding common ground where they can to pass meaningful legislation. Far too often in Washington D.C., Democrat partisanship gets in the way of progress. Young and Michelle have been at the forefront of stopping the failed and far-left Biden agenda. When Republicans take back the majority in 2022, we are confident they will lead in solving our nations most important issues with commonsense conservative principles.

OK, “impressive legislative records” is funny, though maybe we shouldn’t expect minority congressmembers to pass legislation, especially in this polarized time when their very job description is to stop any successful Democratic effort. No, they are not “problem solvers” (although Kim is nominally in that caucus) nor do they look for any “common ground” with Democrats. They’re both Stepford followers of Leader Kevin McCarthy who in turn dances to whatever tune Donald Trump plays. (Trump who LOST spectacularly here, TWICE.) These two ladies show ZERO independence, at a time when independence is sorely needed in that Party.

They both downplay the seriousness of the January 6 Insurrection, and both voted against the committee investigating that atrocity. Like most of their colleagues, they voted against both Biden’s essential Covid relief bill and the new bipartisan infrastructure bill, while still boasting about the dearly needed benefits it brings to their districts. Kim’s defense of her “no” vote was particularly nonsensical and received national ridicule:

Young Kim is still the same Portrait in Courage who, running in 2018, said that she “hates to see crying children,” but “didn’t know enough” about President Trump’s child separation program to have a position on it. Most recently, she explained her refusal to join the censure of Paul Gosar for his fantasy-cartoon killing of AOC by what-abouting old comments by Ilhan Omar and Maxine Waters that Republicans find distasteful. I’m pretty sure Ilhan and Maxine didn’t threaten their colleagues with murder.

But at least Young Kim can form a sentence; Michelle Steel is at the bottom of the barrel, in a category with Texan cartoon Louie Gohmert. She and her svengali husband Shawn (left) have never shied away from publicly worshiping the Rotting Yam (who lost this County spectacularly twice.) This year the bulk of Steel’s district was devastated by oil spills, and folks who may have voted for her became aware of the Steels’ ties to big oil, their stubborn support for offshore drilling, and their fanatic opposition to all environmentalism. Not a good fit for a coastal district!

Well… back to the wisdom of our grand GOP poobahs:

Sacramento is out of control. Our Orange County Republican delegation to the State Assembly is critical to pushing back against Gavin Newsom and the Democrat supermajority. We proudly endorse Assemblyman Phillip Chen, Assemblyman Steven Choi, Assemblywoman Janet Nguyen and Assemblywoman Laurie Davies. These skilled legislators have delivered for their constituents and are best fit to return to Sacramento to continue to fight for every day Californians.

These “skilled legislators have delivered,” and they are also “best fit?” Does anyone know anything they’ve done? And yes of course they’re in a superminority, but Republicans with some beliefs besides saying “no,” Republicans like John Moorlach and Tim Donnelly, always found Democrats they could work with on issues that transcend Party – issues like civil liberties, transparency, efficiency, and helping small businesses.

Laurie Davies – isn’t that the south county politician that wanted to ram the 241 extension into San Clemente? Janet Nguyen – isn’t that the staggeringly corrupt Little Saigon boss who singlehandedly brought CalOptima to its knees? Irvine’s mumbling Steven Choi (left) doesn’t do anything in Sacramento, but can’t tweet enough about the wondrousness of Trump. And I’m still waiting to hear from anyone who knows anything about Philip Chen. “Skilled legislators have delivered,” yeah right.

Sheriff Don Barnes has fought Sacramento Democrats’ push to undermine public safety and law enforcement by defunding the police, ordering early release of prisoners and demanding local agencies enforce mask and vaccine mandates.

Sheriff Barnes has remained steadfast and focused on protecting every Orange County resident. We proudly endorse Sheriff Barnes for reelection…

That first sentence is pretty badly written, making it sound like Barnes did all this (non-existent) defunding of police and the rest. But Barnes is the worst of their endorsements – not a mediocrity like the others, but a smooth, competent, dangerous authoritarian.

To catalogue the misdeeds of this Sheriff (who was shamefully endorsed in 2018 by conservative Democrats Lou Correa and Tom Daly, over a decent Democrat challenger) will require a much longer piece. But let’s try to make a quick summary, in Declaration of Independence style:

  • He has continued his predecessor’s (Hutchens’) co-operation with ICE, handing over nearly a thousand inmates to federal authorities for deportation – more than any other California sheriff – even during a period of Covid outbreaks in immigrant detention centers.

This is the Sheriff with whom the OC Republican Party is well pleased. We can only hope that a decent, qualified, viable opponent to this Sheriff materializes, someone as good as our DA challenger Pete Hardin, and also that that person doesn’t get stabbed in the back by prominent Democrats this time around.

Back to the OC FOP, I mean GOP:

…We also proudly endorse Barnes’ colleagues Hugh Nguyen for Clerk-Recorder, Shari Friedenrich for Treasurer and Claude Parrish for Assessor….

Well, EVERYBODY loves Hugh and Shari, and I don’t know anything about the Assessor, so let’s move on…

In addition, we have endorsed Mari Barke and Lisa Sparks for Orange County Board of Education. They have fought for parents’ and students’ rights against special interest groups who believe parents should not have a choice in the school their child attends and the curriculum their child learns in the classroom.

And here they broach the TRUE clown car, the always-ridiculous OCBoE, on which Barke and Sparks are nothing but yes votes for nutjob crusader Ken Williams.

It’s really fortunate that this Board has a lot less power than you might think from their name, but they sure waste a lot of our money and make our County look stoopid with their fights against mask and vaccine mandates, the mythical boogieman of Critical Race Theory, their endless losing lawsuits against long-suffering Superintendent Mijares, and their unquestioning greenlighting of any and all charter schools that had been previously rejected for good reasons by various local school boards. (I won’t even get into Mari’s psycho husband Dr Jeffrey Barke, who thinks he can kill Covid with his pistol!)

Republican voters of Orange County, your Party leadership claims that the above folks “fight hard for YOUR COMMUNITY.” Whatever, wherever, your community is, I would ask you to question that.


So that’s what we have to say about the OCGOP’s endorsed incumbents. It could be though, when we take a closer look at Fred Whitaker’s little Rump County Party, that we have been expecting more of them than we really should. Consider:


Postcript: Spitzer

Notably missing from this list of OC GOP endorsed incumbents is the District Attorney. Does this mean they’re tired of him, they want him out? Nah, he’s done as good a job as his predecessor Rackauckas at not stepping on any Republican political toes, and he’s been really busy fearmongering against Democrats. He’s probably just sticking to his promise of eschewing political endorsements, which is a good thing.

But it must be painful. You can tell how terrified Todd is of his challenger Pete Hardin – he can’t stop for one day throwing insults, smears, and #hashtags at him. For example, here’s what he posted yesterday – the OC DA’s Happy Thanksgiving greeting to you and me! (Note how the graphic was not enough, he had to add a little commentary at top.)

Happy Thanksgiving to you too, Todd!

About Vern Nelson

Greatest pianist/composer in Orange County, and official troubador of both Anaheim and Huntington Beach (the two ends of the Santa Ana Aquifer.) Performs regularly both solo, and with his savage-jazz quintet The Vern Nelson Problem. Reach at vernpnelson@gmail.com, or 714-235-VERN.