Okay, the longer I procrastinate on this thing the more likely it is I’ll be posting about my choices after I actually voted. Er.
First off, the one countywide measure on the ballot this time around — Measure J. It requires voter approval of increases in pension funding for county employees, and this article discusses the pretty salient fact that there’s been no campaign against it. The employee unions aren’t thrilled by it — I don’t blame them at all, frankly — but they’ve concluded there was no way they could beat it, so they didn’t bother. Defeatist perhaps but hey, you have to pick your battles, and this is Orange County, after all. So there ya go — I think I’d have to vote NO on this one but it’ll cruise to victory.
Meantime, turning finally to my own city of residence, Costa Mesa (I’ve been here for over a decade now, much to my surprise). First, there’s four candidates up for two director positions for the Costa Mesa Sanitary District — hey, you want the benefits of city services, that means you look at everything, and Costa Mesa’s own program is part of the plan. At the same time, based on some initial searching beyond the candidate statements, there’s little here for me to go on right now, except that a lot of people are annoyed at James Ferryman for voting for a pay increase for himself and fellow sanitation board members in the county. Still thinking about this one but I’ll probably vote for current member Art Perry as well as challenger Dan Worthington.
Finally, Costa Mesa City Council. I actually spoke at a City Council meeting once many years back, when Dave from my favorite record store Noise Noise Noise protested a city ordinance that was being haphazardly enforced regarding stickers and posters on business windows. Speaking against it was Dave, myself and a member of the local Libertarian Party — a lineup that might not happen again. Meantime out of all the years I’ve been here only one City Council member ever canvassed directly for my vote as part of a series of neighborhood visits — and I admit I remembered that so well that I ended up voting for her. Can’t go wrong with the personal touch, after all — as Obama’s campaign has made clear this year, for instance.
But otherwise the City Council generally trundles along without me — little surprise as to why, since I’m not a property holder here, I don’t have kids going to local schools, I’m not a businessman here…otherwise I might have a greater stake in things. However, one thing I had noticed over the years was a pretty nasty bit of anti-Latino nativism that hasn’t been pretty, something the question of illegal immigration further exacerbated.
Meantime, the other week I was introduced to A Bubbling Cauldron, a local blog recommended by the OC Weekly a few weeks back as being the best political blog in the county, with a focus on Costa Mesa city politics in particular. But before I got around to reviewing it in detail the other day, I sat down and reviewed the candidates via their statements and other associations. I recognized a few names in particular in the endorsements for some that were immediate red flags due to the issues I’d noted, and I wasn’t pleased to see them back again. So after some thought, I settled on a slate of three candidates — Katrina Foley, William Sneen and Jim Righeimer. This wasn’t a case of perfection in all instances, I should note, but they seemed like the most sensible candidates of the bunch, allowing for where we were at.
Then a few days later I finally dug into A Bubbling Cauldron more thoroughly — and yesterday he linked to a lengthy letter he had had published in the local paper explaining who he was endorsing and why. As it turns out: Foley, Sneen, Righeimer. Still, after reviewing his letter and finding out a bit more about another candidate, Christopher Bunyan, who hadn’t provided an initial statement in the sample ballot, I decided he might be better in comparison to Righeimer, so I’ll probably vote him as well as Sneen and Foley.
I definitely know I’m *not* voting for Gary Monahan or Eric Bever, though.
And with that, my trundle through the ballot’s done.
Roll on tomorrow!