Some people within the GOP have been sounding alarm bells. As I’ve been writing about various and sundry political races across California, I’ve seen it.
Unless there is an intervention – get ready.
The Oligarchy of Controlled Failure I call them. “They” have been earning a living off of the failure that has characterized the CAGOP for 20+ years. Other than the fact that our State GOP Chair makes $200K a year now, nothing else has changed. We’ve talked about blacklists, and the machinations of control by those in positions of influence. These machinations have gotten more severe now that the universe has shrunk to 18 out of 80 Assembly Seats (or 22.5%)
Your intrepid blogger decided to take a step back and look at the 80 Assembly Seats up for election in 2020, I believe that the GOP will lose another 4 Assembly Seats, with as many as 7 possible.
First Off – AD-XX = Assembly District XX.
Let’s look at the districts with no Republican Running: AD-07, 11, 17, 21, 45, 46, 48, 50, 51, 53, 58, 63, 64, 78. Interesting that AD-21 was once considered winnable for the GOP. That is 14 out of 80, 17.5%. My best guess is that an additional 10 will be without a Republican in the runoff. So about 1/3 of Assembly Districts, along with half the Senate Districts.
Let’s look at a list of recently lost Assembly Districts with doomed challengers in 2020: AD-16 (the home of liberal hero Catherine Baker), AD-32, AD-40 (Steinorth), AD-60 (formerly Eric Linder), AD-65 (Orange County), AD-66 (I love Artie Schaper, but he is doomed), AD-76 (Lost just last cycle because no Rep made the runoff) and AD-77 (The moonshine seat). I pulled registration numbers in all of these and R-8 was the closest.
This makes me remember the conversation I had in 2016 with a couple of legislators who told me they researched doing voter registration and determined it was not worthwhile. It looks like anywhere the Dems want to run the numbers up in, they can. It is like the people that foisted the current leadership upon the CAGOP threw in the towel in 2016, or before.
The weak leadership of the GOP has also seen several defections over the last several years. Brian Moonshine, the Narcissistic Rampage of Chad Mayes, Nathan Fletcher (remember him?) and others. In addition, you basically have the headquarters of the never-trumper movement in California. I’ve named several of the overpaid consultants over the years in various posts and a remnant of them are at the helm of the latest rendition of the titanic.
Let’s take a look at the Republican and “Target” Districts: (Bold are seats that are in play)
AD-01 Megan Dahle – She has an NPP opponent who has dropped $350K in to his campaign. It is alleged by my contacts all over the north state that Erin Ryan and Brenda Haynes – both State of Jefferson people and staffers of rival politicians are behind this opponent. AD-01 is considered Safe R, but with friends like Erin Ryan and Brenda Haynes it may not stay that way. From Steve Frank:
Is any GOP’er safe in California? Or is this just an effort to soften up an incumbent in preparation for the 2021 redistricting, which could soften this GOP district. Another Politico analysis, “SELF FUNDER: Assemblywoman Megan Dahle would seem to be in a good position to retain her staunchly conservative AD-1 seat, but she’s facing a well-funded challenge: no-party-preference challenger PK Paul Dhanuka on Thursday dropped another $150,000 into his campaign, bringing his self-supplied total to $350,000 so far.
AD-03 James Gallagher, considered Safe but the registration margin has slipped to +5.9%. Chico, CA is a wasteland at 25% GOP Registration and is the largest city in that district. Losing 5,000 GOP voters (at least) to the Camp Fire did not help either.
AD-05 Frank Bigelow, 10+% margin, safe. I was also quite surprised to find out that Bigelow has one of the most conservative voting records in the legislature. (But, he is a total organizational liberal)
AD-06 Kevin Kiley. My home District is over 10% to the good for the GOP
AD-12 Heath Flora. He replaced Kristen Olsen, and his district has slipped to only +3.3% GOP Registration. I am not sure why there is not a big registration push in AD12 and AD03 for that matter. Given that the nationally targeted CA-10 Race is overlaid onto AD-12, there should be voter registration ongoing. (but, there is little if any)
AD-23 Jim Patterson. While Patterson is unopposed in 2020, his district has slid to only +4.6% GOP Registration. Look for the dems to file a write in to qualify for the fall.
AD-26 Devon Mathis. Now that the scumbag Sean Doherty has been totally discredited, exposed and flushed out of the political ecosystem in CA, Mathis should serve the rest of his terms in peace. The District is about +8%, the scandals that beset Mathis turned out to be unfounded and driven mostly by Mr. Doherty (conclusion drawn based on my research).
AD-33 Obernolte. While considered Safe, this is because Jay worked this district hard and has higher than usual name ID. If he is replaced by a lazy term-limit baby Republican, this district will disappear. It is only +1.4% GOP. This seat could be lost right out from underneath Jay Obernolte while he is being elected to CA-08 in 2020.
AD-34 Vince Fong. This Bakersfield based District is as safe as they get for a Republican in California.
AD-35 Jordan Cunningham – this is going to be world war three. The Dems are coming after him and I am not sure why. Jordan Cunningham got $2000 from the Teacher’s Union, voted in favor of AB5 to kill jobs and is a tax raiser. I will make a prediction – Jordan Cunningham gets re-elected, then bolts the GOP citing Re-districting and his need to represent the majority of the new district as the excuse. Remember, Jordan was the third of the “Mayes Three” along with Moonshine and Mayes that were supposed to exit the GOP and start their own mini-party. Quoting the nooner:
AD35 (San Luis Obispo): There is a new independent expenditure effort to support the re-election of Assembly member Jordan Cunningham (R) in his central coast seat with the coalition’s latest contribution by the state’s prison guards union of $150,000. Thus, far, the committee has spent $54,167 on digital ads. It’s sort of odd timing, as Jordan faces only one challenger–Morro Bay council member Dawn Addis (D)–in March, meaning that the campaign is all about November which is political light years from now.
AD-36 Tom Lackey – this district is nearly D+10. Lackey has been rumored to be a potential party jumper (I am not sure I agree with that rumor). Regardless, he is the dems #1 target and will likely get a $5 Million bomb dropped on his head – in addition to the overlaid CA-25 Race in the area. (Remember Katie Hill?)
AD-38 OPEN. Remember Republican Dante Acosta defeated in 2018?, or the brainless dem leadership marionette Christy Smith who was ordered to run for Congress? This district has been pounded with dem dollars, yet is still a tossup. (it is about D+5) The question is weather the remnants of GOP in California can muster the resources to elect Suzette Martinez. This district is completely encased in CA-25 and the dems will be all over it like locusts.
AD-42 Narcissistic Rage. Chad Mayes is running for re-election as an NPP. Much to his chagrin, the GOP was able to file an opponent Andrew Kotyuk against Mayes. However, the Chair of the GOP could not help herself demanding that the candidate (Kotyuk) ditch his long time staffer (Nathan Miller) or else. Or else what? (Note that Miller almost single-handedly got Kotyuk onto the ballot in less than 24 hours). Will the GOP have anything for Kotyuk beyond the $20K or so the State Party has sent him? The Trump-Haters really want Mayes to get re-elected. To that end, check out Chad Mayes’ campaign finance reports with dem legislators and leftist labor unions. Mayes recently bagged the endorsement of equality California – an extreme left-wing social justice group all about a sexual orientation.
From Scott Lays The Nooner, “AD42 (Yucaipa): There are a couple of interesting contributions on Chad Mayes‘s year-end report that came in after he announced he re-registered from the Republican Party to No Party Preference. GOP political consultant and “never Trumper” Mike Madrid chipped in $100 and recalled State Senator Josh Newman (D) sent in $250. Newman will face Senator Ling Ling Chang (R), who won the office after Newman was recalled, in November.
There is also $1,000 from extreme left wing former Assemblymember Mike Gatto.
AD-55 Phillip Chen. This is yet another district where the Registration has slid right out from underneath GOP leadership. Long considered a rockstar in GOP circles, Chen is now in for a difficult re-election. Orange County is about the only area where the paranoid anti-trump fantasies are true. (As in Trump being a drag on Republicans) It is likely that the Democrats take a run at Chen.
AD-67 Safe R Open. This is the Melissa Melendez seat.
AD-68 Stephen Choi. This district is now in the R+3 range. Choi is in trouble and will be targeted. His gaffe related to Bill Brough did not help matters either.
AD-71 Voepel. This is considered safe, BUT it is completely encased under CA-50 (Duncan Hunter). If CA-50 ends up in an upheaval, and Carl DiMaio and Darrell Issa are going 15 rounds there, AD-71 could be affected by it.
AD-72 Tyler Diep. Diep is easily the most liberal Republican, infesting a seat once held by Travis Allen. Allen even helped elect Diep who promptly turned on him. Diep was un-endorsed by the OCGOP who have called on the CAGOP to honor their by-laws. Given the connection between Diep and current party leadership that he helped elect by betraying Travis Allen I am not sure if the State Party will follow suit. This district is about R+3 and the Janet Nguyen challenge to Diep is legitimate.
Diep voted for AB5 – the gig worker death bill, he also made a bevy of horrible votes on other bills (taxes, gun-grabbing, etc). Diep would have been in trouble by virtue of his own stupidity, but add in the other drama and this seat is on the death list for sure.
Should Diep win in March – he will bolt the GOP citing the Party withdrawing its’ endorsement as the excuse. This is even as he has met with Dem leader Anthony Rendon to negotiate a deal for himself to go full Mainschein.
AD-73 William “Bill” Brough. If Brough makes it through in to the runoff, this seat is gone. Brough’s continued presence in the race and on the ballot is testimony, beyond the recent party jumpers to the weakness of Assembly / Senate leadership by itself. The Scandal-Riddled Bill Brough was protected until late in filing due to political calculations, morals be dammed. AD-73 would otherwise be a Safe R Seat. (look up our expose on Bill Brough for more info)
AD-74 Cottie Petrie-Norris-Norris. Here is an R-leaning district infested by a democrat. The previous GOP Legislator Matthew Harper was ascerbic and refused to raise money or be a team player with other members of the legislature. As a result, the democrats took him by surprise in a good year for democrats nationally. Demonstrating their immunity to learning from mistakes and the terminal leadership weakness – there is a contested and expensive primary for the privilege of going against Cottie Petrie-Norris-Norris.
The dems will have limitless resources to pour in to AD-74. If Kelly Ernby somehow upsets Newport Beach Mayor Diane Dixon, the dems will be able to blow Choi and Diep out of office as they will need to spend far less dealing with Ernby than they would with Dixon. (look up our posts about Ernby for more info)
AD-75 Marie Waldron. She is the Assembly Permanent Minority Leader who (for now) has a safe seat.
Now you understand why Republican Leadership are sweating bullets. Simple numbers suggest it is going to be difficult, beyond the contributions of the players involved to the issues.
To be continued…