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Anaheim Insider here.

In a condescending, inaccurate mailer funded by the Tait Family Trust, Mayor Tait accuses council women Gail Eastman and Kris Murray of giving a “sweetheart” deal to the city’s public employee unions. The mailer is covered with feminine touches such as hearts, lipstick marks and pink-colored lettering. The Tait family’s mail consultant must have been in a hurry because the tea doilies and aprons were left out.

2nd CHA hit on Kris and Gail 10-16-14_Page_1

The Tait camp might want to consider that more than a few women voters are more likely to be offended by the mailer’s chauvinistic tone, which is quite out of place considering the reason Tait’s hand-picked candidate Doug Pettibone dropped out of the race (or rather, was thrown under the bus by the Mayor).

If Murray and Eastman were men, does anyone think the mailer would have looked like this?

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Atlas PAC e-mailed out its November Voter Guide on Friday afternoon listing its endorsements up-and-down the ballot:

Atlas PAC


Apparently, Atlas PAC missed the news that Pettibone has dropped out.

Team Tait (at least as it was constituted until last week) began hitting Anahem voters’ mailboxes last week. As is customary with initial mailers, these were positives: Tait’s highlighting accomplishments, while Pettibone’s and Vanderbilt’s were introductory in nature.

The Tait piece:

1st Tait Mailer_Page_1


The Vanderbilt piece:

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Endorsed by Tait bannerDoug Pettibone, Mayor Tom Tait’s neighbor whom he personally recruited to run for Anaheim City Council, has withdrawn his candidacy after it surfaced the he had pleaded guilty to an assault charge stemming from a domestic abuse incident in the late 1990s.

Pettibone announced his withdrawal earlier this afternoon in an e-mail to Anaheim City Clerk Linda Andal and copying all the other mayoral and council candidates, stating:

“Last night, for the first time, it was brought to my attention that certain matters that occurred during this custody proceeding sixteen (16) years ago will become public and will be used against myself and perhaps even the Mayor to attack our candidacies.

Please allow me to be frank. I have done some things and said something involved in that custody dispute which I am not proud of but which did occur and which I take full responsibility for.  For some reason I believed these records were private and perhaps I was overly hopeful that these issues were so far back in time that they would not or even could not be used against me.”

I never dreamed they could have been used against the Mayor. In fact I did not even believe these records were made available to the public. Had I known these issues, which occurred sixteen (16) years ago, could and would be used against me in this campaign I would have disclosed them to the Mayor upfront before he made the decision to endorse my candidacy.”

The entire withdrawal statement can be read here.

The withdrawal was precipitated by a letter sent to Mayor Tait yesterday evening by Anaheim resident Lisa Lewis:

As an Anaheim voter, as a wife and mother, and as a woman,  I would like to bring to your attention to a very serious matter regarding Doug Pettibone, your neighbor down the street whom you personally recruited to run for Anaheim City Council.

In June of 1998, Mr. Pettibone was charged with four misdemeanor counts of battery, battery against a spouse, assault and harassment, stemming from an apparently volatile, hostile domestic violence situation with his first wife. In January 1999, he pled guilty to assault, stemming from this domestic violence incident, which is “an unlawful attempt, coupled with a present ability, to commit a violent injury on the person of another.”

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oc gop logoThe OC GOP Endorsements Committee voted 3-2 last night to recommend to the full Central Committee “no endorsement” for any of the Anaheim City Council candidates. 

These committee meetings can have a surreal aspect, and last night was no exception. Although Mayor Pro Tem Kris Murray and Councilwoman Gail Eastman had submitted their applications for the endorsement two weeks ago, it was not until they were literally standing in front of the committee that Chairman Mark Bucher told them their request could not be considered at all because they hadn’t taken the pledge not to accept contributions from public employee unions. That could have been communicated earlier.

Tom Tait’s candidates were then brought before the committee. Doug Pettibone went first. He’s a first time candidate and it showed in his pitch, which was short and consisted of telling the committee that Tait has asked him to run, and since the OC GOP has endorsed Tait, then it should also endorse him because he has been endorsed by Tait, and it would be inconsistent if they didn’t.

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Anaheim Insider here.

The Tait Slate of James Vanderbilt and Doug Pettibone have the anti-cop activist vote locked up, judging by this photo posted on Doug Pettibone’s campaign Facebook page:

Ward Carlos Becerra mary daniels


Pettibone and Vanderbilt are on the left. Fifth from the left is local left-wing activist Carlos Becerra, who is a fixture among Anaheim’s “the police are murderous racist thugs” contingent. We’ve already Becerra, who would like to get rid of the free enterprise system, chumming with his other favorite candidate, Tom Tait.

In the center, holding the Vanderbilt for council sign, is another member of that contingent, Mary Daniels. What does it say about these two candidates, who are seeking the endorsement of the Republican Party of Orange County, that they attract lefties with anti-conservative politics as campaign volunteers?

According to this campaign HQ grand opening invite on the Tom Tait campaign website, he personally recruited James Vanderbilt and Doug Pettibone, and their campaigns will share a campaign headquarters. In other words, this is the official “Tait Slate.”


Anaheim City Council Candidate DOUG PETTIBONE

Anaheim City Council Candidate JAMES VANDERBILT

Cordially invite you to attend their



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Jose Moreno megaphone cropped

Jose Moreno, ACSD Board of Education trustee and left-wing activist

Anaheim City School District Trustee James Vanderbilt

Anaheim City School District Trustee James Vanderbilt

UPDATE (4:20 p.m.): I’m hearing now that Moreno is definitely running and will announce at a press conference on Friday.

Anaheim City Hall watchers I’ve spoken to believe Jose Moreno pulling papers for re-election to the Anaheim City School Board is a political head fake, and that he will actually file to run for Anaheim City Council by the end of the week (the deadline is 5:00 p.m. on August) – most likely with a press conference in front of City Hall.

The speculation had about who would be on the Tait Slate of candidates recruited by the mayor in an attempt to take out his Republican council colleagues: James Vanderbilt, Doug Pettibone or Jose Moreno. The feedback I’m getting is a de facto “all of the above” – the strategy being to stuff the ballot with Republican candidates and to the benefit of Democratic council candidates.

At this point, there are five (possibly six) Republicans on the ballot and only one Democrat: council gadfly Donna Acevedo. That changed with Moreno’s high-profile announcement last week that he had re-registered from No Party Preference to Democrat – a distinction without a difference given his ideology, but with political impact. 

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pettibone questionvanderbilt questionWhen people decide to run for city council (or are simply thinking about it), it’s common for them to attend council meetings and speak on agenda items. It’s way of learning more about how the council operates and the issues before the city, to gain exposure for themselves via council meeting broadcasts – and to put themselves on record on major issues.

The 200,000 square-foot Anaheim Convention Center expansion, financed by a $300 million in revenue bonds, is one of the most consequential items the council has dealt with in recent years. Both supporters and opponents agree it will have a lasting impact on Anaheim.

So where were the two members of the Tait Slate, James Vanderbilt and Doug Pettibone, last night? They didn’t take advantage of public comments to let voters know where they stand on the convention center expansion. As far as I’ve been able to determine, they weren’t even at the council meeting.

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Anaheim Insider here.

In his ballot argument for by-district council elections, Mayor Tom Tait goes on and on repeatedly that this measure is about “electing a council member from your neighborhood.”

Mayor Tait put his money where his mouth is. As a local political observer said to ,me, he believes so strongly in “electing a council member from your neighborhood” that he recruited his neighbor down the street to run for City Council!

After months of searching for a second council candidate to unseat Council members Kris Murray and Gail Eastman, it says a lot that the best the Mayor could come up with is an unknown lawyer, with little or no discernible community involvement, who lives a few doors away and has only a few weeks to introduce himself to Anaheim voters.

In what may be a first for an Anaheim city council candidate, attorney Doug Pettibone of Anaheim Hills has the endorsement of a computer-generated character:

Pettibone is one-half of the Tait Slate of council candidates, and a neighbor of the mayor.


Doug Pettibone

For months, much of the discussion among politicos about the November city council election has centered on who would be the second member of the Tait Slate.

Mayor Tom Tait has been putting together a campaign to defeat his council colleagues Kris Murray and Gail Eastman and replace them with candidates of his choosing. Anaheim City School District Trustee James Vanderbilt was recruited to pull papers back in February.

On Monday, Anaheim attorney Douglas Pettibone (not to be confused with guitarist Doug Pettibone) pulled papers to run for city council. Pettibone lives in Anaheim Hills and his law office is in the Stadium Towers building. Judging by his $500 contribution to the Tait for Mayor 2014 campaign on April 24 of this year — plus the fact that the address for the Doug Pettibone for City Council 2014 committee is a few doors down the street from the mayor — makes it a good bet he is the second member of the Tait Slate.

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