Single Page Text Only - 04/26/14

Larry Gilbert’s Voter Guide
June 3 Primary Election

Let me preface this voter recommendation guide by pointing out that I am a fiscal and social conservative Republican. For those who may have forgotten, California voters approved a Constitutional Amendment based on the outcome of Prop 14 in June of 2010. This resulted in what is called an "open primary" election process, or the "top two," regardless of party registration. This became a boost for moderate candidates. Prop 14 also eliminates write-in candidates in General Elections such as 43rd CD Representative Ron Packard who won as a write-in candidate in 1983.

"Under California's new open-primary system, all candidates for each office compete on a single ballot, and the top two vote-getters advance to the general election, regardless of party affiliation."

"Top two" applies to the following statewide officials: Governor, Lt. Governor, Sec of State, Treasurer, Controller, Insurance Commissioner, State Superintendent of Public Instruction and Attorney General. It also applies to State Board of Equalization, State Senators, State Assembly Members, U.S. Senators and Members of the House of Representatives.

Registered voters can now vote for any candidate regardless of party registration. Simply stated, with multiple party candidates on a ballot, only the top two in the Primary will appear in the General Election regardless of party registration. We have already seen Republican vs Republican and Democrat vs Democrat, with third party candidates being left out of the process unless they finish in the top two Primaries.

The nonpartisan Orange County races are not impacted by Prop 14. If a candidate gets 50% plus one vote in the Primary contest, they will win that seat. If none exceeds 50%, there will be a runoff in the Nov 4 General Election between the two candidates with the most Primary votes. The one exception is the County Board of Education. The ROV just informed me that the candidate with the most votes in this Primary race becomes the winner regardless of the number of candidates.

My research on Prop 14 led to the impact of the Open Primary candidates and results in the 2012 U.S. House of Representatives races in the state of CA. This was the first General Election where we could only select from the " top two." The result. Of the 53 House seats, Democratic candidates won 6 of the 8 seats competing against other Democrats. While Republicans competing against other Republicans won the 8th and 31st CD, the Democrats won the 15th, 30th, 35th, 40th, 43rd and 44th Congressional seats.

The following candidate recommendations are based on their voting records, my own experience with candidates, listening to them at debates, and a review of other conservative voter guides.

While some of my recommendations are not appearing on our Mission Viejo Ballot, I have included them due to personal knowledge, relationships and support of their performance. This guide will not cover all 43 contests [with 159 qualified candidates] appearing on the OCVOTE listing.

Trivia. Unlike the 2003 recall election of Governor Gray Davis with 135 candidates, there are only 15 qualified candidates in this year's Primary contest for Governor.

  • Governor. Tim Donnelly
  • Lieutenant Governor. Ron Nehring
  • Secretary of State. Pete Peterson
  • State Treasurer, Greg Conlon
  • State Controller. David Evans. Note: Ashley Swearingen supports High Speed Rail
  • Insurance Commissioner. Ted Gaines
  • Attorney General. Phil Wyman. "Senate Author "3 Strikes & You're Out" legislation"
  • State Board of Public Instruction. Lydia Guiterrez


  • CA CD 4 Tom McClintock
  • CA CD 39 Ed Royce
  • CA CD 45 no endorsement
  • CA CD 48 Dana Rohrabacher
  • CA CD 49 Darrell Issa
  • CA CD 50 Duncan Hunter


  • Board of Sup. 4th District Shawn Nelson
  • Board of Sup. 5th District I support Robert Ming, the only proven fiscal conservative in this race


  • State SD 04 Jim Nielsen
  • State SD 34 Janet Nguyen
  • State SD 36 Pat Bates. Uncontested
  • State AD 65 Young Kim
  • State AD 68 Don Wagner
  • State AD 69 Cecilia Iglesias
  • State AD 73 Jesse Petrilla
  • State AD 74 Matthew Harper


  • OC DA Tony Rackauckas
  • OC Treasurer Shari L. Freidenrich uncontested
  • OC Sheriff Sandra Hutchens uncontested
  • OC Assessor Claude Parrish
  • OC Clerk Recorder Hugh Nguyen
  • OC Auditor/Controller Frank Davies
  • OC Board. of Educ. Seat #2 Tom Pollitt
  • OC Board. of Educ. Seat #5 Linda Linholm


  • Superior Court Judge Office 14 Ken Haskins
  • Superior Court Judge Office #20 Helen Hayden
  • Superior Court Judge Office #27 Incumbent endorsed by organized labor vs lesser known attorney
  • Superior Court Judge Office #35 Jeff Ferguson


Prop 41 $600 Mil. Housing for homeless Veterans. You decide
From Sec. of State: Pro & Con:
Summary of Arguments FOR Proposition 41:
Prop. 41, the Veterans Housing and Homeless Prevention Act of 2014, redirects $600 million of previously approved, unspent bond funds to construct and rehabilitate housing for California's large population of homeless veterans. This Act will construct affordable, supportive, and transitional housing for homeless and near homeless veterans without raising taxes.

Summary of Arguments AGAINST Proposition 41:
Proposition 41 would authorize the State to borrow (by selling bonds) $600 million out of $900 million in bonds previously approved by voters in 2008 for use by the CalVet Home and Farm Loan Program. The issue is whether such a diversion of funds is wise.

Prop 42 Public Records Act: My recommendation is a YES vote.
Opponents. Rural County Representatives of California
Dan Carrigg of the League of California Cities expressed concern, but not necessarily opposition, for two reasons:

First, he argued that the legislature would be exempt from certain protocols. “In the constitution there is an existing different standard that applies to agencies other than the Legislature when it comes to these issues versus the Legislature. If this is good public policy, then why is the Legislature exempt?”

Second, he noted that “state mandates” are typically reimbursable by the state. However, Proposition 42 is not. “[The measure] potentially exposes the local governments to a growing assortment of additional requirements which will impose costs on local agencies for which they will not be able to recover their cost.”

Support. Contra Costa Times: "Timely access to government documents should not be a discretionary budget item subject to whims of elected politicians. But it is, as we saw last summer when the state Legislature and Gov. Jerry Brown quietly gutted the Public Records Act as a cost-cutting move. They only reversed course after loud protests from media and good-government organizations across the state. After seeing the error of their ways, legislators placed Proposition 42 on the June 3 ballot to protect the law in the future. Voters should support it."

The Desert Sun: "As we celebrate Sunshine Week — the newspaper industry’s annual celebration of transparency in government — The Desert Sun strongly encourages you to do so. Open meetings and open records are essential to democracy."

The McClatchy Company, owner of The Sacramento Bee and Fresno Bee: "Transparency is not optional. It is an absolutely essential basic service, like public safety, and must be factored into a city’s bottom line."

The Salinas Californian: "But what’s important to us is that the voters make an unshakeable commitment to transparency. Vote yes on Proposition 42."

Wendy Bucknum Campaign Update
Part 13, Character qualities do not include “cover-up”

Wendy Bucknum is a professional housing lobbyist running for a Mission Viejo council seat in November. Articles in this series have identified Bucknum’s lobbyist job, her ethical lapses, her stream of campaign dollars from special interest and the list of elected officials endorsing a lobbyist.

During the April 21 council meeting, Bucknum made her customary appearance at the public microphone as a cheerleader for various causes. This time, the issue was the Nadadores’ contract for its use of the city-owned swimming facility. Throughout the discussion, support of the Nadadores’ value to the community was unanimous. No cheerleader was needed, particularly Bucknum jumping up and down.

The council majority of Frank Ury, Dave Leckness, Trish Kelley and Rhonda Reardon couldn’t be bothered to negotiate the contract. Rubber stamps in hand, they voted 4-1 (Councilwoman Cathy Schlicht dissented) to extend the city contract for 20 years, without knowing the full details of the contract. The terms and conditions are to be determined later and signed by Mayor Kelley without further council discussion. Voters should react at the first opportunity by dumping anyone from office who votes for a contract without knowing what’s in it.

The main discussion wasn’t about the contract. Councilwoman Rhonda Reardon asked the head swim coach, Bill Rose, to come up to the microphone to answer questions about “the elephant in the room.” She was referring to the sex scandal that resulted in one of the coaches being banned for life from working with young swimmers. The OC Register published an article in March 2013 about Coach Daniel Dusenbury’s long-term sexual relationship with a teenage member of the swim club,

The article’s opening paragraph addresses any question of allegations: “Former Mission Viejo Nadadores coach Daniel Ad'm Dusenbury has been banned for life by swimming's national governing body after acknowledging having an inappropriate relationship with a female teenage Nadadores swimmer, the Orange County Register has learned.”

A DVD documenting Dusenbury’s sexual relationship with the teenager was provided to the Nadadores administration. Initially, the board of directors responded appropriately by placing Dusenbury on paid leave. However, the board then reversed itself by allowing him to return while under investigation. Parents of swimmers reacted by pulling their children out of the program. Dusenbury left on his own accord, and those who defended him or looked the other way – including Wendy Bucknum – further damaged the public image of the club.

Bucknum’s many statements at the public microphone include spewing character words and talking about her concern for children. When she had an opportunity to protect children from a sexual predator, she instead chose damage control. Last week, this blog published statements from a memo written by Bucknum in 2012 in which she referred to being criticized for “immoral and unethical behavior in the Nadadores alleged sex scandal.” It was not an allegation, and Bucknum’s attempt at damage control continues to this day.

Bucknum’s participation – real or exaggerated – in the many organizations in which she claims membership disqualifies her from serving on the council. Council members should make objective decisions that are free from conflict of interest. Bucknum’s entanglements with clubs, organizations and her employer’s housing industry have shown she doesn’t have the ethical basis to separate herself from special interest.

Non-government Events

Following is a sampling of events and activities that are not funded by taxpayers or promoted by the Nanny State. Please support private enterprise and non-profit groups.

Big Bucks Bingo, Wednesdays, 6:15 p.m. early bird and 6:45 p.m. regular games, Mission Viejo Elks Lodge, Marguerite and La Paz, Mission Viejo, 949-830-3557.

First Thursday Art Walk, Laguna Beach, Thurs., May 1, 6:00 p.m., member galleries throughout Laguna Beach, including the Laguna Art Museum, 307 Cliff Drive at North Coast Highway, Laguna Beach, (949) 494-8971,

A Hidden Vine on the Lake wine tasting on Fri., May 2 (every Friday evening), 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m., 27772 Vista del Lago, Suite B-15, Mission Viejo, (949) 916-4810,

WineWorks, live music every Friday, happy hour Tues.-Sat., check the website for wine tastings and other events, 26342 Oso Parkway, Suite 103, Mission Viejo, (949) 582-0026,

Soka University events: International Festival on Sat., May 3, 10:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.; “An Evening with Branford Marsalis,” Jazz Monsters Series, on Fri., May 9, 8:00 p.m., 1 University Drive, Aliso Viejo, (949) 480-4278,

Mount of Olives Church SHARE Food Drive on Sun., May 4, (first Sunday of each month) helps families in crisis, . Mount of Olives Church, 24772 Chrisanta Drive, Mission Viejo, (949) 837-7467,

Mariachis at the Mission, Sat., May 10, 10:00 a.m. to 11:15 a.m.; second Saturday of each month, 26801 Ortega Hwy, San Juan Capistrano, (949) 234-1300,

La Vida Drum Circle, Wed., May 14, 7:00 – 10:00 p.m., group meets on the evening of every full moon (June 13, July 12, etc.). Drummers should bring their drums. Firewood is appreciated for the bonfire, Aliso Beach, Aliso and Coast Highway, Laguna Beach, (949) 275-7544,

St. Kilian’s Recycling Drive, Sat., May 17, 7:00 a.m. to 12:00 noon, held on the third Saturday of each month. Organized by Knights of Columbus; acceptable items include aluminum, paper and plastic. No glass or cardboard. Lower parking lot, 26872 Estanciero Drive, Mission Viejo, (949) 472-1249,

Cabrillo Playhouse, Sun., May 18, 6:00 p.m., “Local Sunday Sessions,” every third Sunday, three local musical acts, 202 Avenida Cabrillo, San Clemente, (949) 492-0465,

Dana Point Art Walk, Thurs., May 29, 5:00 p.m. to 7:00 p.m., Dana Point Art District, 24471 Del Prado Ave., Dana Point, (949) 429-5591,

Laguna Playhouse presents “Six Dance Lessons in Six Weeks” with Leslie Caron and David Engel, through June 8, 606 Laguna Canyon Road, Laguna Beach, (949) 497-2787, ext. 1,

Political and Government Events Calendar

Orange County Board of Supervisors will hold a regular meeting on Tues., Apr. 29, 9:30 a.m., Board Hearing Room, First Floor, 333 W. Santa Ana Blvd., Santa Ana, (714) 834-3100,

Capistrano Unified School District Board of Trustees will hold a Special Board Meeting on Thurs., May 1, with the closed session beginning at 8:30 a.m., 33122 Valle Road, San Juan Capistrano. Agenda and supporting documentation are published on the website 72 hours prior to a meeting, (949) 234-9200,

SOC912 will meet on Thurs., May 1, 7:00 p.m. The program topic will be “Let’s Celebrate America! – One Nation Under God!” No charge to attend; donations are requested to help pay for costs. Light refreshments. The group meets at the Norman P. Murray Community Center, 24932 Veterans Way, Mission Viejo

Nixon Library concert on Sun., May 4, Southern California Children’s Chorus. Doors open at 1:30 p.m., and music begins at 2:00 p.m. unless otherwise noted. Nixon Library, 18001 Yorba Linda Blvd., Yorba Linda, (714) 364-1120,

Moulton Niguel Water District meetings: Personnel and Salary on Wed., May 7, 9:00 a.m.; Engineering and Operations on Mon., May 12, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.; Finance and Information Technology on Wed., May 14, 9:00 a.m. to 11:00 a.m.; Board of Directors on Thurs., May 15, 5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m., MNWD Main Office, 27500 La Paz Road, Laguna Niguel, (949) 831-2500,

Santa Margarita Water District meetings: Board of Directors on Wed., May 7, 7:00 p.m.; Engineering Committee on Fri., May 16, 7:30 a.m.; Finance Committee will meet on Fri., May 23, 7:30 a.m., 26111 Antonio Parkway, Rancho Santa Margarita, (949) 459-6420,

Rush Limbaugh Club of Orange County will meet on Sat., May 10. Breakfast starts at 7:30 a.m., and the program runs from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. Cost is $15 for breakfast or the program only for $5.00. The club pays for first-time attendees' breakfast or attendance fee. Casta del Sol Golf Clubhouse, 27601 Casta Del Sol Road, Mission Viejo, (714) 235-1430,

The Mission Viejo Chapter of ACT! for America will hold a General Meeting on Mon., May 12. Doors open at 7:00 p.m. The meeting starts promptly at 7:30 p.m. and ends at 9:30 p.m., at the Norman P. Murray Community Center, 24932 Veterans Way, Mission Viejo.

Saddleback Valley Unified School District Board of Trustees will hold a regular board meeting on Tues., May 13, 6:30 p.m. The board meets in the district building, 25631 Peter Hartman Way, Mission Viejo, (949) 586-1234,

OC Veterans Advisory Council, Wed., May 14, 6:00 p.m. The council meets on the second Wednesday of each month. Veterans Service Office, Conference Room A/B, 1300 S. Grand Ave., Building B, Santa Ana,

Capistrano Valley Republican Women Federated, Wed., May 21, 9:00 a.m., at the Marbella Country Club, 30800 Golf Club Drive, San Juan Capistrano. CVRWF meets on third Wednesdays of most months. CVRWF meets on third Wednesdays of most months. Call (949) 240-6799 for reservations,

Saddleback Republican Assembly, Thurs., May 22, 7:00 p.m. SRA meets on third Thursdays (except in July, August and December) at the Norman P. Murray Community Center, 24932 Veterans Way, Mission Viejo. For information call (949) 769-1412.

The Buzz

SOC912 will meet on Thurs., May 1, 7:00 p.m. to 9:00 p.m. at the Norman Murray Community Center, 24932 Veterans Way, Mission Viejo. The program will be “Let’s Celebrate America! – One Nation Under God!” Enjoy an opportunity to gain wisdom and listen to live music while praising God with fellow patriots. No charge to attend, but donations help pay for costs. Light refreshments.


Save the date, May 10, for the next meeting of the Rush Limbaugh Club of Orange County. The breakfast begins at 8:00 a.m. ($15 with reservation or $20 walk-in), and the meeting runs from 8:30 to 10:30 a.m. Email reservations to and visit the website at . The group meets at the Casta Del Sol Country Club, 27601 Casta Del Sol Road, Mission Viejo. On the program will be Linda Paine from the Voter Integrity Project, which was formed to provide nonpartisan education about the electoral system, as well as training and oversight for individuals who want to help protect and preserve fair and honest elections in California. Linda will discuss their efforts to combat voter fraud in California and the nation. Refer to their website at Also on the program will be following candidates.
Superior Court Judge, Office No. 14: Kevin Haskins
Superior Court Judge, Office No. 20: Helen Hayden
Superior Court Judge, Office No. 35: Jeff Ferguson


Saddleback College presents Arts Week from May 5 through May 10 with concerts, art exhibits, musical theater and dance presentations. The schedule can be found at or call (949) 582-4656.


On Mar. 22, City Hall presented its annual “Up in the Air Festival.” The idea is to celebrate everything that goes up in the air or uses air to operate. Residents would instead like some attention to things on the ground. Last week, homeowners in a neighborhood near Marguerite Parkway and Alicia Parkway circulated a petition to get their streets repaired. Instead of a coat of slurry, temporarily covering deterioration, residents are asking for real repair and maintenance.


Read an amusing article by Art Pedrosa about Councilman Frank Ury, who is a candidate for the OC Board of Supervisors,


Ury refers to himself as an “engineer,” but what has he engineered in the last 15 or so years? His jobs have been in sales or information technology, not engineering. Currently, he says he’s building computers for HP. Does he mean putting them together in a warehouse? A prior post on this blog about Ury’s career path got such a rise out of Ury that one of his buddies at the county level wrote an email to this blog’s publisher. Ury evidently was known as a conservative in the early 1990s, and some of his acquaintances are clueless about what he is today. Here’s his voting record: . You can run but you can’t hide.

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