Natalie Rubalcava Recall: New Reasons to Vote YES.

Taken from a Register photo by Leonard Ortiz.

Anaheim District 3 voters should be getting their ballots in the mail this week, for the Recall Election of Councilwoman Natalie Rubalcava. This recall was filed last July by a union, for their own set of reasons; they managed to get over 9000 signatures to qualify the recall, far more than the 5437 votes she was elected by in 2022.

After watching Ms. Rubalcava in action for the past year and a half, hoping she would be a better Councilwoman, and after April’s Disneyland Forward vote, the Anaheim Democrats Club last Thursday unanimously passed a resolution in support of the recall, with NEW reasons that District 3 citizens should vote yes. Here is that resolution:

WHEREAS Councilwoman Natalie Rubalcava, after being elected with $380,000 of independent expenditures from Disney, and in the midst of receiving hundreds of thousands more from Disney and allied interests to fight her recall election, voted April 16 in favor of the Disneyland Forward proposal:

  • Agreeing to the abandonment of public Anaheim streets that Anaheim residents want to keep public, including Magic Way and Disneyland Drive;
  • Allowing Disney to only provide funding for affordable housing for less than half a percent of the 14,000 new employees Disney plans to hire;
  • Giving up the first chance in thirty years to require a study on the environmental and health effects of Disney’s nightly fireworks;
  • Ignoring, and literally laughing at, residents’ pleas to put this monumental decision off for further study and negotiation;

WHEREAS Ms. Rubalcava, having been elected with tens of thousands of independent expenditures from housing developers, and in the midst of receiving tens of thousands more from them to fight her recall election, led the Council in rejecting an “inclusionary housing ordinance” requiring new developments to provide a certain percentage of affordable housing, a policy that has worked in many other Orange County cities, and which she disdainfully labels a “buzzword” and a policy that would “unfairly burden developers”;

WHEREAS negotiations will soon be occurring, again, with the Angels baseball team, over our Anaheim Stadium, and residents need to be represented by Councilmembers whom we can trust and who believe in transparency, unlike Ms. Rubalcava who as COO of the Orange County Business Council lobbied strongly for Mayor Sidhu’s discredited and unfair Stadium deal;

WHEREAS District 3 residents, and other Anaheim residents, need and deserve a Council representative who will represent their constituents’ real needs over that of wealthy special interests, by:

  • Supporting an entertainment tax in Anaheim to fund the needs of the City’s residents;
  • Supporting real Campaign Finance Reform requiring Councilmembers to recuse on votes that affect entities who have funded their elections through Independent Expenditures;
  • Supporting policies to meaningfully increase Anaheim’s stock of affordable housing, including an Inclusionary Housing Ordinance;

THEREFORE, the Anaheim Democrats Club resolves that we support, and endorse and urge a yes vote on, the Recall of District 3 Councilwoman Natalie Rubalcava, and her replacement with a candidate who will work for the needs of District 3 residents in the above ways.

UPDATE 5/27: This should not be construed as an “endorsement”, one way or the other, by the Democratic Party of OC or California!


Yes, most of the above could be written about most if not all of the Anaheim Council. The Disneyland Forward vote shows that we need a new Council, that there hasn’t been any meaningful change since the Sidhu Days. But you eat an elephant “one bite at a time.” District 3 gets their ballots this week. Districts 1, 4 and 5 are up this November.

About Vern Nelson

Greatest pianist/composer in Orange County, and official political troubadour of Anaheim and most other OC towns. Regularly makes solo performances, sometimes with his savage-jazz band The Vern Nelson Problem. Reach at, or 714-235-VERN.