Last night will go down in OC political history as an epic embarrassment for the Democratic Party of Orange County. Not only did it get trounced countywide, not only did it lose two seats–the 65th State Assembly District and the 34th State Senate–that the state party desperately need to keep its Sacramento super-majority, but the Dems can't even classify the Republican Party of Orange County as one of fogey gabachos anymore. For last night, the OC GOP's diversity strategy worked.
Although the OC GOP has long been able to depend on Vietnamese voters, the past couple of years have seen the party double-down on other Asian-American groups, grooming candidates and making inroads. The payoff showed last night: The following is a list of non-incumbent GOP Asian-American candidates who effectively won their races (the Registrar of Voters won't certify the results for a couple of days):
*Henry Charoen, Centralia School District Board
*Sandra Lee, Cypress School District board
*Peggy Huang, Yorba Linda City Council
*Khanh Nguyen, Westminster School District
*Young Kim, 65th Assembly District
*Janet Nguyen, 34th State Senate District
*Michelle Steel, OC Supervisor, 2nd District
*Ling-Ling Chang, 55th Assembly District
*Tyler Diep, Westminster City Council
*Dina Nguyen, Orange County Water District, District 1
*Satoru "Sat" Tamaribuchi, Municipal Water District of Orange County, District 5 (don't know his official party affiliation, but he worked for the Irvine Company–which makes him a Republican)
*Lisa Bartlett, Supervisor, 5th District
Why, the GOP even got three new Latinos elected–James Vanderbilt, as an Anaheim councilmember, Steven Vargas on the Brea City Council (where he's served in the past) and Paulo Morales on the Cypress City Council. And the GOP HATES Latinos.
On the other hand, all the Democrats were able to score, diversity-wise, were five seats: Cynthia Aguirre on the La Habra City School District Board; Phat Bui for Garden Grove City Council; Valerie Amezcua on the SanTana Unified School Board; Ryan Ruelas for Anaheim City School District Board, and Art Montez, Centralia School District (Rae Tso might also be a Dem down in Laguna Woods, where she won a council seat–but it's Laguna Woods, so that really doesn't count).
What an Orange County where the GOP elects almost three times as many candidates of color as the Democrats. This disaster for the Dems can squarely be put on the feet of chairman Henry Vandemeier–but that's a whole other post. In the meanwhile, let's laugh at the Democratic Party of Orange County anew for thinking that the future of their party in Orange County is Anaheim councilmember Jordan Brandman, a pendejo if ever there was one…HA!