Did You Know January 17 was "Loretta Sanchez Day"? Neither Did We!

Cheeeeeese!
Cheeeeeese!
Screen Grab of DNC Convention

Tuesday's epic SanTana city council meeting will be long remembered in the Banana Republic. SanTana Mayor-for-Life Don Papi Pulido got his wish with the buyout of city manager David Cavazos, with Michele Martinez returning to the Dark Side once more by siding with her former enemy. The council unanimously voted (with councilmember Vince Sarmiento strangely absent) to declare SanTana a sanctuary city. Councilmember Sal Tinajero continued his courageous attack against the city's police union, charging they have hijacked democracy (but Sal: when has SanTana ever been democratic?)

What it WON'T be remembered for was the 35-minute theater devoted to former congresswoman Loretta Sanchez and her 20 years of doing...something, I guess in Washington. The council issued no mere proclamations, mind you: they officially made January 17th "Loretta Sanchez Day" in Santa Ana.

In a rare show of unity, all of the present council gathered around the microphone and explained why Loretta is an Orange County hero. "Congresswoman Sanchez was the biggest fighter, not only for Santa Ana but for all of Orange County in general," said Martinez, who no doubt wants to grab Loretta's seat one day. "We wouldn't have what we have today if it wasn't for her leadership."

New Council member Juan Villegas explained that anytime people called on her for anything, she was always there, and always did her best to make Orange County what it is. "We have a state-of-the-art recycling facility and some of the best water around because of her on going work over the years," he said (Loretta makes it rain?). "The sacrifices she's made to her personal life for the benefit of the residents of Santa Ana is immense and we are forever grateful."

The former congresswoman wiped tears from her eyes as Tinajero took the microphone next. "There are so many things people don't know [Sanchez] did," he said.

"She went to a veterans hospital down in San Diego and there was a gentleman who'd lost both of his eyes and he was all bandaged up. He'd lost both of his legs. They had even sewn one of his muscles back onto his leg so he could try to revive it. The mother, who was Spanish-speaking, signaled to [Sanchez] to come outside and she says, 'My son doesn't know this, but when he wakes up he's going to realize that he doesn't have any eyes. But that's not what hurts me. What hurts me is that the military is charging my son for his meals right now while he's recovering.' Sanchez immediately flew back to D.C. went to the Pentagon, talked to the people she knew on both sides of the aisle and demanded there be change. Three days later no servicemen who was wounded in battle never had to pay for their meals again. That was because of Loretta Sanchez, our Congresswoman."

R. Scott Moxley's 1996 cover story on Loretta's original run against B-1 Baboso
R. Scott Moxley's 1996 cover story on Loretta's original run against B-1 Baboso
OC Weekly archives

The council members aren't wrong. Sanchez did do a lot. I mean, what would we do without the Science Center in Orange County? But there's also a lot she did that wasn't spoken of, like comments made about President Obama possibly endorsing Kamala Harris because they're both African American. Or how about when she denied the fact she appointed Howard Kieffer to head her campaign, even though he'd served prison time for stealing the assets of an elderly woman? Oh and when Moxley asked her about it, she responded via fax denying involvement with him...but the fax machine she used was traced back to Kieffer?

Loretta will always have our respect for slaying Bob Dornan and trashing Republican after Republican until they were reduced to running zombies—in fact, we wish she would've continued instead of laughably trying to go against Harris. But painting her as OC's Mother Theresa is laughable to anyone who knows that she's just another politician— one who dabbed on national TV during the U.S Senate debate. Actually, we'll celebrate Loretta Sanchez Day as long as SanTana issues a commemorative peso of her dabbing...HA!


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