You are currently browsing the category archive for the ‘OCCORD’ category.

ruby heeled districtsThe Left continues to pour money into its effort to change the rules of how the Anaheim City Council is elected in order to produce elections results more to their liking, i.e. the election of left-of-center councilmembers to adopt left-of-center policies.

The latest donation comes from the Orange County Labor Federation, AFL-CIO Committee on Political Education (COPE), which on Thursday, September 18 contributed $10,000 to the “yes on Measure L” campaign.  That brings the OC Labor Federation’s total contribution to the Measure L campaign to $20,000. So far, the unions and progressive political forces have put nearly a quarter of a million dollars into Measure L, which will end the at-large council election system and carve Anaheim into single-member council districts.

Does anyone not there believe that radical left-wing organizations like OCCORD and UNITE-HERE are funding this campaign to further the cause of limited government? Will we hear a single word of criticism about this  from Team Tait, which has based its campaign on “fighting outside special interests” even as it enthusiastically supports Measure L, which is being funded entirely by a flood of outside special interest money? 

Unite Here protestorsThe campaign for by-district council elections has received another big union check: UNITE-HERE Local 11 contributed $25,000 to the Committee for District Elections, which is the “Yes on Measure L” campaign. 

Who does UNITE-HERE Local 11 represent? Hotel workers (and food service employees). Of what does Anaheim have thousands? Non-unionized hotel workers that UNITE-HERE not only wants, but needs as members. 

The only hotels in the Anaheim resort area with unionized workers are the Anaheim Hilton and the Disney properties.  

UNITE-HERE wants to change that.  It’s 501(c)4 satellite group, OCCORD, has been fighting the GardenWalk Hotel economic assistance agreement in court. By an amazing coincidence, OCCORD is being represented by Cory Briggs, the same left-wing ambulance chaser who is co-plaintiff with CATER against the Anaheim Convention Center expansion.

[OCCORD is housed in office next to UNITE-HERE, in a building owned by UNITE-HERE, and receives a $5,000 check from UNITE-HERE every month]. 

OCCORD doesn’t object to the city’s TOT subsidy for the GardenWalk project. What they (or rather, UNITE-HERE) want is for the GardenWalk owners to allow UNITE-HERE to unionize their employees. If the GardenWalk investors agreed to that, OCCORD’s lawsuit would go away. In the meantime, the OCCORD/UNITE-HERE strategy is to wear the GardenWalk investors with drawn-out litigation and force them to choose between agreeing to be unionized or giving up the project. 

Bu that is a laborious, expensive approach to unionizing hotel workers. It would be better for UNITE-HERE to have a left-leaning, Democrat-majority on the Anaheim City Council that made it clear to hotel developers that approval of their new or expanded projects hinged on having unionized workers or agreeing to “card check neutrality” as a condition of approval (in addition to incorporating similar demands into the conditions).

Since the at-large council election system has proven a barrier to electing more than one Democrat to the city council, UNITE-HERE and other left-wing constituencies want to replace it with by-district elections, which would structurally tilt council elections toward a Democratic majority. It’s no accident that nearly 92% of UNITE-HERE political contributions go to Democrats.

Orange County Republicans should consider that the pillar of Democratic power in Nevada are the unions representing hotel and casino workers.  Imagine how the political landscape in Orange County would be altered if the Left succeeds in passing Measure L and opening the door to unionizing the estimated 8,000 hotel workers in the Anaheim resort area. That’s a lot of union dues revenue available to fund the election of Democratic candidates.  

UNITE-HERE Local 11 needs members. Or rather, it needs the revenue from member dues. It also represents Aramark employees, and lost members when the Anaheim Ducks decided to get rid of Aramark and bring its food service operations in house.  UNITE-HERE lobbied the Anaheim City Council to require the Ducks to staff their in-house food service operation with UNITE-HERE members. They even pushed for the council to ask the Ducks to allow UNITE-HERE to organize their food service workers via card check. 

Since the four of the five members of the Anaheim City Council are Republicans, UNITE-HERE’s demands were rebuffed. Does anyone think that would have been the case if a Democratic majority were in control?

This is what is at stake in the battle over by-district election in Anaheim. It’s not the naive (and cynical) malarkey about “neighbors electing neighbors” or better city services (neither of which by-district elections would deliver). This is the opening salvo in a political campaign to shift Anaheim and Orange County to the Left. 

Yesterday evening, I e-mailed this open letter to members of the Republican Party of Orange County Central Committee:

Dear member of the Republican Party of Orange County Central Committee:

With the November election is only 10 weeks away, there is an urgent need for clarity among Orange County Republican activists, donors and officeholders about the true political situation in Anaheim.  For more than two years, it has been obscured by the dynamics of ongoing conflict between the majority of the Anaheim City Council and Mayor Tom Tait centered on a few, specific areas of disagreement.

The outcome of Anaheim’s mayoral and council contests are important — but of greater long term consequence for the political trajectory of Anaheim and Orange County is Measure L, which would replace Anaheim’s current at-large council elections with a by-district system that is used in cities like Los Angeles and San Bernardino.

If Measure L passes, the Democratic Party will have established a beach head in Orange County’s largest, most important city – a beach head it would be almost impossible for the Republican Party of Orange County to reverse.

Consider these facts:

  • Anaheim is the 10th largest city in California
  • It is the largest city in the state with a Republican-majority city council.
  • Of its 123,823 voters, 38.9% are Democrats, 35.1% are Republican and 21.8% are NPP.
  • Since 1994:
    • Only 1 of Anaheim’s 3 mayors has been a Democrat
    • Only 3 of 12 councilmembers have been Democrats

Given liberal Democrats’ poor election track record under Anaheim ‘s traditional at-large election system, a coalition of left-wing interest groups and activists has been working since 2012 to enact a by-district election system. Under this scheme, Anaheim would be carved into 4 (or possibly 6) single-member council districts. Instead of being accountable to all Anaheim voters, council candidates would only be voted on by voters into their geographic districts.

Read the rest of this entry »

dark-money-graphicTake a gander at the campaign finance report filed by the campaign to carve Anaheim into single-member council districts. Two things jump out beside the $101,100 in contributions: 93% of that total is the “dark money” hated by the progressives running this campaign  and not a penny of it comes from Anaheim – most is from Northern California.

The biggest single contributor to the Committee for District Elections is OCCORD  – to the tune of $49,000.  OCCORD is a left-wing non-profit political advocacy group headquartered in a Garden Grove office building owned by the militant union UNITE-HERE.  [OCCORD’s professed mission is to reverse the polarity of Orange County politics and shift it as far to the Left as possible.]

That’s a neat trick. OCCORD Executive Director Eric Altman announces his resignation to go run the Committee for District Elections. $49,000 is diverted from OCCORD on June 26 to the committee Altman is heading up (it’s unclear exactly when Altman left OCCORD, but his replacement as executive director wasn’t announced until mid-July.

Since OCCORD is a 501(c)4, it only has to file annual financials with the IRS and refuses to disclose its donors. In other words, by the time any figures out where that $49,000 came from, the November election will be long over. Is it from traditional OCCORD donors like the California Endowment and the James Irvine Foundation? Wells Fargo? If so, did they understand their money would be going to fund a ballot initiative? We know at least some of that money comes from UNITE-HERE, which cuts OCCORD a $5,000 check every month.

Mind you, OCCORD founder and leader Eric Altman (now the director of the Committee for District Elections — is an advocate of transparency… at least for others. I encourage the Voice of OC and the OC Register to ask OCCORD where the $49,000 came from, and see if they get an answer. I once tried, and was rebuffed.

The second biggest donor is PowerPac.org Voter Fund, a San Francisco-based political action committee that on May 30 donated $45,000 for a campaign to re-structure how Anaheim is governed.  Hmmm…why would a PAC from liberal San Francisco care how Anaheim elects its city council?

Read the rest of this entry »

OCCORD LogoOrange County Communities Organized for Responsible Development (OCCORD) has announced the hiring of a new executive director to take the place of founding ED Eric Altman. Altman left OCCORD to lead the campaign to create a structural Democratic majority on the Anaheim City Council via by-district elections (in which endeavor he is inexplicably being aided by Mayor Tom Tait).

The new OCCORD honcho is Ann Werboff, a veteran of the union organizing and radical politics. Given that OCCORD’s self-professed mission is to turn Orange County blue and give our v iew of the role of government in our lives a hard shove to the Left, Werboff will fit right in.

For example, here’s the conclusion of a 2009 essay from the Review of Radical Political Economics, to which she contributed as a research assistant during her time in liberal academia:

Read the rest of this entry »

OCCORD LogoOn Monday, I reported the inaugural contribution to the pro-council districts campaign committee was $3,500 donation on May 9, 2014 from one of the lead attorneys suing Anaheim on behalf of Anaheim City School District (ACSD) Board of Education member Jose Moreno (who has successfully avoided running for re-election this November under a by-district system because he slow-walked their introduction into the ACSD).

I would have reported it two months ago, except the Committee for District Elections ( a spin-off of UNITE-HERE-spin-off OCCORD) never reported it to the Anaheim City Clerk. I happen to find it during a search of the Secretary of State’s CAL-ACCESS database – not where one would ordinarily go for information on contributions in Anaheim campaigns.

Although Morris Baller’s $3,500 check was received on May 9, the Committee for District Elections didn’t report it until May 12. Given that is was a late contribution, meaning it should have been reported within 24 hours.

Campaigns and committees sometimes miss reporting deadlines. As long as such omissions are the exception rather than the rule and are remedied in a timely fashion, then no harm, no foul. At the same time, it’s strange that the Committee for District Elections made its Form 410 Statement of Organization filings with the City Clerk – both before and after Mr. Baller’s contribution — it reported Baller’s contribution to the Secretary of State, instead.

Read the rest of this entry »

Jeff LeTourneau

Jeff LeTourneau

According to a reliable source, Jeff LeTourneau, a long-time left-wing activist who last year lost a bid for OC Democratic Party chairman, is in the running for the OCCORD executive director position, vacated when founder Eric Altman tendered his resignation to run the campaign to persuade voters to adopt single-member council districts in November.

As amply documented on this blog, OCCORD is a left-wing advocacy group working to push Orange County’s political center of gravity as far to the left as possible. LeTourneau would fit right in with their mission to redefine the role of government in our society.  LeTourneau’s confrontational style would be a departure from Altman’s more convivial manner, but there’s little practical difference in terms of philosophy of government. If LeTorneau gets the job, OCCORD will remain committed to more government regulation and control of the economy, and immediate citizenship for illegal immigrants.  Keep in mind is a OCCORD’s ideological-bent attracts staffers who mourn the death of “Commandante” Hugo Chavez, the late socialist dictator of Venezuela.

OCCORD (via its lawyer, environmental ambulance chaser Cory Briggs) is suing to undo the economic assistance agreement for the GardenWalk Hotels that was approved last year by the Anaheim City Council. Perhaps “undo” isn’t quite correct; OCCORD probably has a list of demands it wants satisfied in exchange for dropping the suit. Extortion by litigation.

OCCORD has been on a hiring spree lately, In addition to finding a new executive director, the union off-shoot is shopping for a Communications and Operations Coordinator and a Lead Organizer. Got to staff up for the election!

OCCORD LogoThe Voice of OC reports the left-wing political advocacy group known as OCCORD (Orange County Communities Organized for Responsible Development) is suing the City of Anaheim in an attempt to invalidate the city’s economic assistance agreement with the GardenWalk hotel project developer.

Cory Briggs, a left-wing environmentalist attorney from San Diego, is serving as OCCORD’s counsel on this idiotic lawsuit. Readers will remember that last summer, Briggs and OCCORD asked state and county prosecutors to go after ever member of the council (except Mayor Tom Tait) over the May 2013 GardenWalk vote.  In their fevered imaginations, mere membership on the SOAR advisory board constituted a conflict-of-interest, because they know GardenWalk developer Bill O’Connell, Sr. who is also – gasp! – a member of the SOAR Advisory Board!!

According to the Voice of OC, the lawsuit filed by OCCORD and Briggs alleges that Councilmembers Lucille Kring, Gail Eastman, Kris Murray and Jordan Brandman voted for the May 2013 GardenWalk agreement because Bill O’Connell gave to their campaigns. Never mind that Bill O’Connell Sr. has been one of their political supporters for years. Never mind that Eastman and Murray had already voted for the original GardenWalk agreement, which Brandman had also publicly supported. Never mind that the terms of the 2013 agreement Kring supported differed from the 2012 agreement. Never mind that all four councilmembers have in practice always supported the principle of such economic assistance agreements.

No – in the imaginations of Cory Briggs and OCCORD, the only possible explanation for these councilmembers to cast a vote entirely consistent with their public records is receiving contributions that amount to a small fraction of what their campaign raised.

If GardenWalk developers had struck a deal with OCCORD’s sponsor and funder UNITE-HERE Local 11 for it to organize GardenWalk hotel workers, OCCORD wouldn’t be filing this lawsuit. If the developer struck such a deal now, and threw in a “living wage” provision and some “community benefits”dreamed up by OCCORD, I wouldn’t be surprised to see the lawsuit dropped altogether.

Read the rest of this entry »

 

Ada Briceno (L) and Eric Altman (R)

Ada Briceno (L) and Eric Altman (R)

For those still under the false impression that the push for single-member council districts (aka by-district elections) in Anaheim is not a political project of the Left, here’s some news: Eric Altman, founding executive director of left-wing advocacy group OCCORD, is leaving that post to run the campaign for the by-district initiative on the November ballot.

A message from Ada Briceno, chair of OCCORD (and second-in-command of radical UNITE-HERE Local 11, from whence OCCRD sprang) on the OCCORD website announces the news:

Dear Friends:

On behalf of the Board of Directors of OCCORD, it is both with great sadness and with great hope that I write to inform you that Eric Altman, the founding executive director, has decided to step down after nine years of successful leadership. Eric Altman will transition from his role as executive director in July 2014 to focus on the Anaheim campaign for district-based elections. We thank him for his time at the helm of OCCORD and look forward to continuing to work with him to empower low income residents and create a more inclusive Orange County.

You can the read the rest here.

Altman will presumably be paid by the “Committee for District Elections, sponsored by One Anaheim,” for whom the treasurer is the OCCORD operations manager and which seems to have the same address.

Altman was a senior organizer for UNITE-HERE when he founded OCCORD in 2005. The two groups are closely intertwined and even have offices in the same building in Garden Grove. In 2012 alone, UNITE-HERE funded OCCORD to the tune of $66,000 (OCCORD also received $2,500 from the Nurses Association of Canada).

OCCORD goal is to move Orange County leftward, politically – and single-member council districts are a vehicle for achieving that goal.  The advocacy group has advertised itself to prospective employees as “a leader in the emerging movement to reclaim Orange County, California, from the extreme laissez-faire policies” that aims to “reframe the debate about our regional economy and the role of government in our society.” Let’s just say OCCORD’s view of the “role of government in our society” bears little resemblance to that of the Founding Fathers.

OCCORD has been laser-focused on bringing single-member council districts to Anaheim. It lobbied the Citizens Advisory Committee on Elections intensively, to the point where Altman was allegedly texting talking points and instructions to CAC Chair Vivian Pham during the CAC meeting where recommendations to the city council were voted on. As Briceno’s announcement put it:

“After a two-year organizing and advocacy campaign in Anaheim, OCCORD’s grassroots leaders and coalition partners won a major victory when the City Council agreed to put the issue of district elections before Anaheim voters in the November 2014 general election.”

OCCORD itself states that “Our programs, which began in Anaheim, are designed to be replicated in cities throughout Orange County.”

Who knows – at some point, Republicans outside of Anaheim might finally wake up to what the Left is up to in Anaheim (with the regrettable collaboration of a few Republicans), and what the consequences of failing to oppose this campaign will have for Republicans and conservatives county-wide.

It’s interesting that Altman isn’t taking a leave of absence, but leaving OCCORD altogether, since the left-wing advocacy group is advertising for a new executive director and lead organizer. Perhaps that means “One Anaheim” is going to be a permanent, full-time political advocacy operation with Altman at the helm, or perhaps he has something else lined up post-election.

 

In my earlier post ruminating oOCCORD Logon the possibility of the OCEA playing sugar-daddy to the single-member council districts ballot initiative campaign, I mentioned OCCORD (Orange County Communities Organized for Responsible Development) as a leader of the left-wing coalition in that side of the issue.

And it appears OCCORD will indeed be taking a leading role in the campaign. On March 25, paperwork was filed with the Anaheim City Clerk creating the “Committee for District Elections, sponsored by One Anaheim” – with an address in Garden Grove, 92843. While the street address is redacted from the Form 410, its safe say this committee is a creature of OCCORD – which is also in Garden Grove 92843. Plus the committee treasurer is Susan Hecht, who is OCCORD’s development and operations manager.

“One Anaheim” is identified as a “social welfare organization,” meaning it is (presumably) a 501(c)(4), which are allowed to engage in partisan political campaigns (as a secondary activity). They also are not subject to limits on their lobbying activity and are not required to publicly disclose their donors. I haven’t yet found any documentation on “One Anaheim,” but it’s a safe bet it is also an OCCORD political project.

It’s also ironic that the campaign to carve Anaheim into several, more politically bite-size pieces has taken the name “One Anaheim.”

As some long-time readers know, OCCORD, in its own words:

“is a leader in the emerging movement to reclaim Orange County, California, from the extreme laissez-faire policies and entrenched anti-immigrant sentiment that have long dominated our region.”

Yes, to to the folks at OCCORD, our highly-regulated economy here in Southern California is an example of “laissez-faire” economics – which tells you just how radical they are. Can someone tell me again how bringing single-member council districts to Anaheim is NOT a political project of the Left?

On March 22, the left-wing coalition backing single-member council districts in Anaheim kicked off its campaign to win their approval by Anaheim voters this November. 501(c)(3) groups like OCCORD can actively advocate for a ballot measure within limits on “lobbying” activity. Per the BolderAdvocacy website (published by the left-wing Alliance for Justice):

Under Section 501(h), the overall limit on lobbying starts as high as 20% of those expenditures for small charities and diminishes to a smaller percentage of the expenditures for larger organizations, with a maximum cap of $1,000,000 on an organization’s annual lobbying expenditures. In addition to this overall limit, the 501(h) test imposes a limit on grassroots lobbying, calculated as one-quarter of the overall lobbying limit. For example, a 501(c)(3) that has made the 501(h) election, with an annual budget of $500,000, would have an overall lobbying limit of $100,000 and a grassroots lobbying limit of $25,000.

OCCORD’s annual budget has historically been somewhat over half-a-million dollars, so the above is a solid guide to how much of its budget the left-wing advocacy group can devote to this ballot measure.

Convincing Anaheim voters to re-structure how they elect their city council will take a considerable amount of persuasive voter communication – especially since there is no grass-roots groundswell demanding single-member council districts.  In other words, the pro-council districts coalition needs a benefactor(s) to bankroll its campaign.

Who will do it?

One possibility would be the Orange County Employees Association (OCEA), which definitely has the resources and presumably the interest in replacing at-large council elections with a single-member districts system.

Read the rest of this entry »

Interested in the kind of governance progressives have in mind for Anaheim? Watch Santa Ana under the Sunshine Ordinance regime.

Last night, the Santa Ana City Council approved a 5-year strategic plan required by the so-called “sunshine” ordinance adopted in 2012.  Both were largely the products of lobbying by SACReD (the Santa Ana Collaborative for Responsible Development). SACReD is Santa Ana’s equivalent of the coalition of left-wing interests in Anaheim that pushes for policies like single-member council districts and retention ordinances; in fact, it includes some of the same players, like OCCORD.

Much of the strategic plan is what you would expect to see in such a document produced in any city, and replete with jargon, buzz words and catch phrases. Other parts reflect the political priorities of the progressive interests that lobbied for it under the SACReD umbrella.

This is progressive governance – as distinct from traditional representative government — in action. With the latter, candidates present their political beliefs and governing priorities to the voters, who respond by either voting for or against them. The judgment of the citizenry, rendered at the ballot box, then sets the direction of government via the electorate’s selection of who will captain the ship of state – subject to amendment or reversal in future, regular elections.

Progressive governance differs because it views government not as a mechanism, but as a living organism that should embody the passions, priorities and needs of the people at any moment not only reflects, but incorporates the people. There’s no real distinction between “the people” and the government. Since progressive see themselves as representing the legitimate aspirations of the people, then it is their political priorities constitute the legitimate objectives of government.

Read the rest of this entry »

One talking point made by advocates of single-member council districts for Anaheim is that is it not a political project of the Left – notwithstanding the fact that the organizational and political heft behind the push for council districts is coming from a coalition of left-wing political organizations and figures such as OCCORD, UNITE-HERE, the Democratic Party of Orange County, the Orange County Labor Federation, the ACLU, Dr. Jose Moreno, Amin David, Vivian Pham, etc. The smattering of Republican supporters serve as a tissue of bi-partisan camouflage.

Take this flyer for a “Rally for Anaheim” rally to be held March 22 at Little Peoples Park on March 22. The rally is being organized by two left-wing non-profits, OCCORD and Orange County Congregation Community Organization – with special guest Mayor Tom Tait:

occord rally for anaheim english

The Facebook page invites people to come and “Show your civic pride and join us to learn more about district elections in Anaheim.”

One of the organizers listed on the flyer is Marisol Ramirez, a director of OCCORD and an organizing intern for the militant UNITE-HERE Local 11. Here is Ms. Ramirez at last summer’s anti-police rally (organized AnswerLA.org and now-Anaheim Council candidate Donna Acevedo) waving a Party for Socialism and Liberation sign saying COPS: George Zimmermans With A Badge:

OCCORD Director Marisol Ramirez holding party for Socialism and Liberation sign saying "Police Are George Zimmermans With A  Badge."

Marisol Ramirez holding a Party for Socialism and Liberation sign saying “Police Are George Zimmermans With A Badge.”

Read the rest of this entry »

What’s been buzzing around Anaheim for a few weeks is bleeding into the media (OC Register and VOC): during tonight’s closed session, the Anaheim City Council is expected to settle the ACLU’s lawsuit (for which the lead plaintiff is Anaheim City School District Trustee Jose F. Moreno) to replace the city’s at-large council elections with a system of single-member council districts.

As part of the settlement, it is expected the City Council will agree to carve the city into four single-member districts and then put it to the voters. The judge can’t impose single-member districts by judicial fiat since Anaheim is a charter city; it requires amending the city charter, which can only be done by a vote of the people.

There’s no reason single-member districts couldn’t be placed on the June ballot in hopes of obtaining a”yes” vote that would put single-member districts in place for the November council elections. My guess is the ACLU, the plaintiffs and the rest of the single-member district Coalition of the Left prefer a November election on the grounds its higher (and more Democratic) turnout increase the odds of voter approval.

As readers know, in 2013 the council voted to create four at-large council districts (which doesn’t require amending the charter), and to place on the June ballot measures asking voters to a) incorporate at-large council districts into the city charter and b) whether they want to increase the council to six members. City staff was subsequently instructed to create districts for both a four- and six-seat council, for the city council’s consideration and adoption.

Read the rest of this entry »

lorri galloway at rally

Lorri Galloway

She’s been telling people for months, and we’ve been posting about it here for months (and before anyone else). Now she’s making it official via a Frank Mickadeit column: former Councilwoman Lorri Galloway is running for Mayor of Anaheim against incumbent Tom Tait.

Frank writes:

Galloway’s [candidacy] is a shock, however, given their political relationship. Even though she is a Democrat and he is a Republican, they found a lot of common ground.

He may be shocked, but a lot of other people aren’t – for the reasons outlined in his column and this post over at TheLiberalOC.com.

Councilwoman Lucille Kring is likely to enter the mayoral race soon, setting up the three-way contest (four-way, if you count Rudy Gaona) Galloway is banking on as her pathway to becoming mayor.

Read the rest of this entry »

On the Anaheim City Council’s agenda on September 24 was some good news amidst all the usual unpleasantness: the creation of Miraloma Park and Community Center. The city had its eye on a commercial property for some time, and moved to purchase it when it became available. According to the staff report, amenities will include:

Miraloma Park and Community Center in the City of Anaheim consisting of re-purpose the existing 4,312-square-foot building to create a Silver-level, LEED-certified community center with a multi-purpose room, classrooms, counseling offices, a kitchen, restrooms, a computer center, and a lounge. The project will also include a perimeter loop trail, a sloping skate plaza, an outdoor classroom plaza, a picnic and BBQ area, a multi-court/events plaza, an interactive water feature, a variety of play areas, native gardens, a vertical garden wall, storm/bio swales, solar canopies and a parking area.

miraloma

Read the rest of this entry »

Jose Moreno jedi mind tricksI’ve written previously that Jose Moreno, the lead plaintiff in the ACLU lawsuit seeking to impose single-member council districts on the people of Anaheim, has made no effort to shift elections to the Anaheim City School District Board of Education from at-large to the single-member districts he judges so critical to democracy.

Moreno is a member of the ACSD Governing Board of Education, and he can push to have the ACSD adopt by-district election without filing a lawsuit or going to a vote of the people.

Moreno is basically claiming the Anaheim should have more Latinos on the city council since the city’s population is 54% Latino, and citing the [intellectually dishonest] factoid that only three Latinos (or four, if one considers Lorri Galloway’s Latina blood content high enough) on the Anaheim City Council since the city’s founding.

The same conditions which Moreno deplores in the City of Anaheim are present in the Anaheim City School District. only more so.

64% of the 203,816 people who live in the ACSD are Latinos.

86.3% of ACSD students are Latino.

Read the rest of this entry »

Today we commemorate the 50th anniversary of the march on Washington and Martin Luther King, Jr.’s “I Have A Dream” speech. The signature line from that speech is, of course, this:

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin, but by the content of their character.

It is sad and ironic that 50 years later, the City of Anaheim is being sued by self-styled civil rights activists who seek to base Anaheim’s city council elections on the color of  its citizens skins, and not their character as unique, individual citizens.

Strip away the rhetoric and the ACLU lawsuit seeking to impose single-member council districts centers on race. This elevation of ethno-racial group considerations above individual rights is evident in this comment by ACLU lawsuit plaintiff Jose Moreno at the June 11, 2013 Anaheim City Council meeting:

After paying at least rhetorical deference to Councilwoman Kris Murray’s point about the individual citizen’s right to vote for whomever they choose, Moreno offers this critical caveat:

“…so that neighbors may elect neighbors regardless of what they may look like but that people who look a certain way or may have a certain surname, that their voting patterns are respected.” [emphasis added].

That is (or should be) a startling admission of a radical idea. In plain English, what Moreno is saying is that the ballot choices of Latino voters should be accorded more weight than non-Latino voters. That principle stands in opposition to one of the bedrock principles of this Republic of equality before the law. Each of us has the right to vote and to cast his or her ballot for the candidate or candidates of our choice; but no person’s vote does and should count more than the vote of anyone else. Sometimes our favored candidates win, and sometimes they lose – but those are our choices as individuals and not merely constituent parts of a racial group, or individual manifestations of ethnic groupthink.

I posted last week about the city’s report regarding the distribution of city services – a critical issue because a central contention of single-member council district advocates is that the flatlands are short-changed, an alleged situation that single-member districts will supposedly remedy (see the Magic Single-Member District Unicorn). Radical community group OCCORD has been the chief proponent of this view, even putting out a study purporting to rove this disparity.

Here’s a video clip from that August 13 council meeting in which Councilwoman Kris Murray engages staff in an illuminating exchange comparing the city’s study with the problematic OCCORD document:

An interesting aspect of OCCORD calling on the state Attorney General and the OC District Attorney to prosecute all four members of Anaheim City Council for imaginary violations is it puts some members of the OCCORD Board of Directors at political odds with themselves.

OCCORD is the political offspring of UNITE-HERE. Unions provide OCCORD with funding, and at least 40% the radical group’s board of directors consists of union executives and members.

Among those are Ada Briceno, Secretary-Treasurer of UNITE-HERE Local 11; Rick Eiden, the executive vice president of United Food and Commercial Workers Local 324; Rob Penney, organizing director for the United Nurses Associations of California;  Jorge Inestria, UNITE-HERE activist.

In addition to being a director of OCCORD, Eiden is also the president of the Orange County Labor Federation (the OC presence of the AFL-CIO) — which endorsed Jordan Brandman for Anaheim City Council in 2012.  UNITE-HERE is represented on the OCLF board by its president, Tom Walsh (Briceno is UNITE-HERE Local 11’s No. 2).

On its face, you have UCFW President Rick Eiden – in his capacity as an OCCORD Director — calling for the criminal prosecution of an elected official (on absurd legal grounds) whose he officially and materially supported as head of the OC Labor Federation.

Read the rest of this entry »

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Categories

Contributors

%d bloggers like this: