The national media is starting to send its reporters to our sordid little burb, specifically the 47th Congressional District, where incumbent Loretta Sanchez is facing her first true challenger ever in State Assemblymember Van Tran. Politico did an okay job; the Los Angeles Times published a retread this weekend seemingly cobbled from Wikipedia and candidate website bios. More stories will undoubtedly appear, as it hits so many issues pertinent to the future of this country and has two wackjobs--but we're getting ahead of ourselves.
As a token of goodwill for our fellow reporters, we at the Weekly--who have followed Tran closer and more critically than any other publication--offer five important things to keep in mind for their profiles that will explain Tran best to a national audience.
In no particular order (and make sure toread our companion piece on Sanchez
*Tran is the Orange County GOP's Golden Child--and their last hope against Sanchez: As you will have learned from your Sanchez cheat sheet, local Republicans aren't too fond of Sanchez but also know that they can't run a gabacho against her in a district like the 47th--since her last defeat of longtime incumbent Bob Dornan in 1998, the Republicans have yet to run a white person against Sanchez. Tran is everything the local GOP has dreamed for in a Sanchez opponent--immigrant, with previous political experience and a bona fide loon.
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*Tran does not like to get criticized and will quash all critics if he can--especially if they're Vietnamese: Far from being beloved in his community, some of Tran's fiercest critics are Vietnamese--and they have paid the price. For someone who supposedly loves American freedoms so much, Tran acts like a commie in telling radio commentators to shut up via lawyers.
*Tran doesn't usually live in the 47th Congressional District: Has a nice home in Sacramento, he does.
*Trans' political "machine" is composed of drunks, homophobes, and councilmembers who think they can intimidate police officers: Already, the national media makes much of Tran supposedly running a well-oiled Little Saigon political machine that will deliver him an easy victory. Problem is, his troops constitute the biggest batch of political losers since Obama's Clinton-era inner circle. Google "Andy Quach dui," "Dina Nguyen homosexual" and "Tyler Diep citryst" and you'll know what I mean. Plus, how powerful can Tran be if the most powerful Vietnamese-American politician in Orange County is his sworn enemy, Janet Nguyen?
*The OC GOP really thinks Tran can beat Sanchez--which means Tran will probably lose big: For the past 14 years, we in OC have had to hear the local Republicans go on and on about how this is really the year the Republicans will take back the congressional seat from that evil, evil Loretta Sanchez, that Bob Dornan/Gloria Matta Tuchman/Jeff Chavez/Alexandria Coronado/Rosemarie Avila/Van Tran relates to the voters, unlike Loretta. And every year, Sanchez slaughters them. Save the obituaries, national reporters: Sanchez pulls this one out, or I owe Frank from Coto de Caza lunch.