Every day since Election Day, leftist Chicano Studies professor Jose F. Moreno has chipped away at the lead of Councilman Jordan Brandman. By Friday, the two Democrats were tied, and this evening’s ballot counting update put Moreno 44 votes ahead of Brandman:
While there are reportedly some challenged ballots still to be counted in District 3, it’s fair to say Moreno has won. While a recount is possible, a margin of 44 votes out of 12,691 is tough to reverse. The last successful recount was mounted by Janet Nguyen in the the 2007 1st Supervisor District special election. She was trailing by 7 votes after the counting was completed; the recount flipped that to a 7 vote lead, and ballot challenges reduced that to 3.
UPDATE [Nov. 21, 9:43 p.m]: According to a post on Moreno’s Facebook page, Brandman called to concede earlier this evening.
Moreno’s candidacy was the cause celebre of central Orange County’s growing cadre of radical progressive activists (a number of whom have been elected to local government during recent cycles). Militant unions like UNITE-HERE and SEIU were all in, as were the membership of leftist groups like OCCORD and OCCCO. Progressive allies like Anaheim Union High School District trustee (and Moreno campaign manager) Al Jabbar and Anaheim Elementary School District trustee Ryan Ruelas have not been shy about employing district resources and students to support Moreno’s campaign.
This quest to turn Orange County blue also received major support from GOP Mayor Tom Tait and ersatz conservative donor Howard Ahmanson, who spent nearly $100,000 on behalf of Tait’s endorsed council candidates. Tait and Ahmanson can now take considerable responsibility for the election of the most left-wing elected official in Orange County local government – and to the city council of Orange County’s largest, most important city. Their assistance has been invaluable to the success of an ongoing progressive effort to roll-back conservatism in Orange County.
Myopic is too charitable a description. Just incredible.
Senate District 29
It was not a good day for Republican Assemblywoman Ling Ling Chang, who fell behind Democrat Josh Newman for the first time in Orange County (where the bulk of SD29 voters live):
Reportedly, Democrat turnout in Anaheim really hurt Chang and helped Newman.
The registrars in LA and San Bernardino counties have not updated their tallies since Friday afternoon, so it is hard to gauge the true margin between the two candidates. That said, Chang would have to significantly increase her margin in San Bernardino County in order to offset the slippage in OC.