Diane Harkey, Fallen Star?

H/T to OC Blog for this! The campaign to recall Dana Point Mayor Diane Harkey now have a web site up and running. They have up the Fair Political Practices Commission ruling that urged Harkey to abstain from voting on a proposed shopping center that her family had a stake in, a ruling that Diane Harkey IGNORED as she voted on the project anyways. They have more evidence detailing Harkey’s Pay-to-Play style of politicking in Dana Point. And of course, they have the now infamous video of Harkey storming out of a council meeting, mouthing obscenities at the audience as she made her rather ungraceful exit.

So what does this mean? Well, there’s still much to be done if the “Recall Diane Harkey” campaign truly intends to recall the Dana Point Mayor. But at the very least, this is growing some attractive low-hanging fruit that potential opponents can use against Harkey as she’s running for Assembly in the 73rd District.

Last year, Diane Harkey seemed to emerge out of nowhere to challenge then-Assembly Member Tom Harman for the 35th State Senate seat that was vacated when John Campbell was elected to Congress. Harman seemed to be the favorite, as he was well-known in many areas of the district. But suddenly the OC GOP machine sought to deny “liberal” Tom Harman of his SD 35 seat, and in this process Diane Harkey came within a few hundred votes of becoming a State Senator. And out of nowhere, Diane Harkey became a superstar.

But now, Diane Harkey’s star may be falling. It seems like her superstar status may leave her as quickly as it came to her if this recall campaign gets off the ground. So much for an “easy victory” in AD 73.

So who will now challenge Diane Harkey, in her State Assembly race and in this recall effort, and become the new “rising star” for Republicans in South County?

  14 comments for “Diane Harkey, Fallen Star?

  1. antony cooke
    August 1, 2007 at 8:05 am

    Diane Harkey foisted herself on Dana Point with a blitz of dollars, flag waving, stars and stripes razzmatazz, and a host of feel-good antics on how she wanted to “give back” to the city. Soon after she bamboozled the town, it soon become patently clear that all she was really interested in doing was climbing up the political ladder, and glorifying herself in the process.

    But it wasn’t good enough to stop at that; she then influenced her friends to seek office in the city by the same approach, which has resulted in a stranglehold on everything which happens in Dana Point. It’s about as democratic as a dictatorship.

    Meanwhile her business interests couldn’t take a back seat. Despite a ruling by the California Fair Political Practices Commission, she injected herself into the city redevelopment plans despite clear conflicts of interests as a property owner in the district. She is currently under investigation by the Enforcement Division of the Fair Practices Commission for violating conflict of interest laws.

    Her overall pattern of doing business at City Hall speaks to the same character traits. Surely the public deserves better than someone who thinks it is fine to essentially buy government office merely to fulfill their own personal agendas. Too cynical? Try attending just one council meeting and all will be obvious. We need ethical people worthy of our trust and respect in elected office.

  2. Andrew Davey
    August 1, 2007 at 9:59 am

    Ha! And look what all that razmatazz has led to now! It’s never a good idea to allow folks to “buy government”, and believe their claims that their wealth somehow makes them holier than us, or better able to “give back” than we are, or more immune from corruption than anyone else. It didn’t go that way for Arnold Schwarzenegger, and it didn’t go that way with Diane Harkey. Hopefully, we’ve now learned this lesson.

  3. robert traphagen
    August 1, 2007 at 10:24 am

    It is GREAT to see a fair website up and running comments re: Mayor Diane Harkey. My wife and myself along with others that were forced out of our mobile home park because of huge money developers and their relationship with City public officials and THEIR PRIVATE AGENDAS AND SELF INTEREST POLITICS. I will share with you this: Diane Harkey led us on to help get her elected. We had twenty of us working dilligently with grassroot efforts to help get her and Lara Anderson elected. Lara Anderson is living up to her support for us. She is a positive for Dana Point. Diane Harkey on, on the otherhand, pretended all along to be our friend. She instead, behind our backs, was getting campaign funds from the very people who were against us. Since I helped get her elected I MUST NOW HELP GET HER OUT. Mayor Harkey actually came into our home, composed a letter to try and break our relationship with Pat Evans (our attorney). The effort by Harkey was very manipulative. I will gladly put up the letter upon your request and let`s let your readers decide if infact is ethical. CHARACTER COUNTS…AND DIANE HARKEY MUST BE RECALLED. She does not really care about Dana Point as a whole …but merely self interest groups with LOTS OF $$$$ to get her up North into Sacremento where she can continue their agendas. HELP US PLEASE AND LETS STOP HARKET NOW!!!…..Robert Traphagen

  4. Andrew Davey
    August 1, 2007 at 12:39 pm

    Well, that’s why we’re here. We may be The Liberal OC, but we’re open to hearing what EVERYONE in OC has to say. I guess that’s why we’re liberals. 😉

    OK, OK, now I’ll get serious. I’m sorry to hear this. Wow, so Diane Harkey’s really the backstabber, isn’t she? So what else do you have to say about her? If you’d like me to help you keep the heat up on Harkey, email me your story at atdnextATgmailDOTcom. If you have more dirt on Diane, I’ll look into it, and we’ll keep our eye on Harkey here at The Liberal OC.

    If she is forsaking her duty to serve her constituents in Dana Point to curry favor in her Assembly race, then she deserves to be elected to NEITHER OFFICE!

  5. Jerry Grunor
    August 1, 2007 at 1:12 pm

    If one’s man trash is another man’s treasure, then I must be the biggest obstacle in Dana Point Mayor Diane Harkey’s way or I am her largest nemesis in the scheme of things. She may be outwardly strong on style, but not on substance as the potential candidate for the California State Assembly has yet to reveal much about herself. Even when she talks about her executive positions with the banking industry, no one can locate the bank she had worked at, nor define the position she had.

    It certainly does not say much about Mayor Harkey when she leaves a city council meeting cursing and waving her middle finger during a heated debate with her consitituents. Nor does her position as mayor give her the right to intervene in a private civil matter by pressuring residents to sign away their legal rights to benefit owners of a luxury hotel.

    Mayor Harkey ignored government warnings about participating in meetings concerning the town center project, yet extended her comments to the council even though she has conflicting real estate holdings in Dana Point. She also got involved with a convicted felon who supported her during her run for the state senate where she lost her bid against Tom Harmon.

    Lastly, she falsely stated to local residents, in front of the city attorney, that I was a criminal and spent time in jail which I did not. By casting me in a false light which itself is actionable due to its malicious intent and plays out in defamation, my option is therefore being formulated by my attorney to file a complaint of slander against Mayor Harkey. So far, the unethical moves on the part of Ms. Harkey are all but inching her nibs to fall apart at the seams.

    In summary, Ms. Harkey is showing herself as a nervous twit who cannot face the negative commentary from her consitituents and thus hides from the public by having others do her dirty work, maliciously attacking her recall proponents with false statements that are liable. All of her money, and she claims to be wealthier than God, will not buy her a future in politics. After all, in this day and age, money can only buy so much!

    Jerry A. Grunor
    Dana Point

  6. Andrew Davey
    August 1, 2007 at 1:48 pm

    Hmmm, so who is Diane Harkey really? What were her positions in the banking industry? What stake does she hold in this town center development? What relationship does she have with this luxury hotel? Who is she really working for?

    From what you tell me, Jerry, it doesn’t sound like Diane Harkey is working for all of you in Dana Point. And if she isn’t working for all of you, then you shouldn’t let her keep her job. And if she can’t do her job in Dana Point, then why the heck should she be sent to Sacramento?

  7. robert traphagen
    August 1, 2007 at 2:36 pm

    Andrew, I would be more than happy to share with you lots of info. Remember I am still involved in litigation. Harkey is going to be sued for her behavior coming into our house. This suit wil l be brought forth by the Traphagens, which is me. I know a lot re: Harkey and The City Of Dana Point. I am on them like flies on poop. Please call me and we can talk via telephone. My telephone number; 949-489-8269 I would be more than happ to shre with you communication. Robert Traphagen

  8. antony cooke
    August 1, 2007 at 3:22 pm

    Hi Andrew. It seems you have generated more than a little interest in our city’s most dramatic issue of the time! I have been asking the same question for a long time now about who Diane Harkey is. None of us really knows, so what does that tell you? Read her bio carefully, and the big questions are simply not answered, and all you really have is vague positive sounding stuff. It could mean anything and probably does.

    She managed to push herself onto the council with a campaign which cost close to $200,000. Then, she managed to push our former and well respected Mayor (Lara Anderson) out of that position by getting her cohorts onto the council as well, then arranging for them to make her Mayor! It’s all very high powered strategy, but leaves little room for the public good.

    Most people are not engaged enough with politics at the local level to sift through the election time grand standing, as well as the high financed political consultants’ campaigns for candidates such as this. They should be, of course, so it could well be argued that the people truly do get the government they deserve. Trouble is, the rest of us don’t!

    Hopefully, the community will wake up to it before it’s too late. Imagine this shallow self-serving operator in Sacramento. And with her lust for power and glory, then what? I have a feeling not 6 months will go by before she will be leaping to the next position. If you want to see how things are for yourself, come to a Council Meeting. You’ll be astounded; even more by the Mayor’s complete inability to say or do anything off script.

    Even if Harkey should gain the Republican nomination, it’s time for Democrats to come out and be counted at election time in June, and prove that this kind of candidate should never take being elected for granted in this district.

  9. Andrew Davey
    August 1, 2007 at 3:39 pm

    Anthony and Robert:

    When’s the next Dana Point City Council meeting? Will you be there? And would you like me to cover it?

    You are both telling me some VERY DISTURBING things about Mayor Harkey. And so far, your staements seem to go along with what my other friends down south have told me about her. Now could all of you be lying?!

    So perhaps, I need to come down sometime and see Harkey in actin for myself… 😉

  10. robert traphagen
    August 2, 2007 at 12:10 pm

    Andrew, Yes please come to the next council meeting. My attorney will be serving Harkey on a law suit at council chambers. Also, call me at my home. There is a bigger surprise for Harkey composed by our recall group that we shall be enacting in a coule of weeks from now. I need you to call me or Jerry or Anthony soon. Please call me at my home at:949-489-8269. Or my cell phone: 714-493-5812. Sincerley, Robert Traphagen

  11. Andrew Davey
    August 2, 2007 at 1:18 pm

    Will do, Robert. Thanks for letting me know about your plans for Diane Harkey. I think this is something we should DEFINITELY follow here at The Liberal OC.

  12. robert traphagen
    August 2, 2007 at 1:41 pm

    NOW IS THE TIME FOR ALL GOOD LIBERALS TO COME TO THE AID OF THEIR CITY (Dana Point). I am a liberal and I am open to hear all sides. I have excellent friends from the conservative movement who also are willing to LISTEN. One of these folks is: James Lacy. He is working on the correct side re: The School District and Recall efforts. I am a registered Democrat, college graduate in political science with honors. Along with some Republicn friends WE ARE GOING TO RECALL MAYOR DIANE HARKEY. I need your help fellow liberals. WE JUST CAN NOT ALLOW DIANE HARKEY TO GO UP NORTH TO SACREMENTO WITH HER LINCOLN CLUB SUPPORT AND BE ANOTHER VOTE FOR THEIR $$$$ AGENDAS. When you see the petition for Ethics Matter/Recall Diane Harkey please sign it AND LET`S AT LEAST GET IT TO A VOICE WITH THE VOTERS. I need your help fellow liberals and open minded conservaties. LET`S DO IT….PLEASE….sincerley Robert and Colleen Traphagen

  13. robert traphagen
    August 3, 2007 at 12:20 pm

    The Harkey group has changed their $1000.00 Dinner from The Ritz to The Pacific Club in Newport Beach. Harkey and John Campbell got wind of our recall Harkey group protest we were going to stage at The Ritz because we did the right thing and filed a permit request to assemble in Newport Beach. Of course the information was leaked back to Campbell and Harkey. This shows me they are afraid and we have them on the run. SO …LET`S GET MORE PEOPLE OUT NOW AND COVER BOTH GATE ENTRANCES AT : The Pacific Club in Newport Beach. We have tee shirts, bumper stickers , beautiful signs (of course), and a VERY NICE SIX FOOT CANVASS BANNER. The rats are running ….LET`s GET `EM. THIS IS A BEAUTIFUL THING…Robert Traphagen

  14. Marie
    August 11, 2007 at 9:54 am


    You’re listening to four people and taking it as representative of the entire city. These are plain falsehoods by a few disgruntled citizens who are willing to waste taxpayer dollars and compromise our city’s reputation to pursue a personal vendetta. Please note it took THREE attempts to find 20 valid registered signatures for their petition in the first place. This is obviously not a very popular movement in DP.

    Diane has done a great job for our city–despite the constant barage of attacks she’s recieved from this group. She’s helped local groups like the Ocean Institute and Historical Society–with money AND time. She worked hard to keep our city budget in line and protect our city’s best interests. There are plenty of residents who agree with me and that will become very apparent when this recall falls flat.

    I can’t even believe the proponents are insisting that Mayor Harkey waved the finger and cursed at residents when their own video clearly shows Mayor Harkey is NOT IN THE ROOM when the curses are said. Not only that, but one of the residents who attended the meeting has come forward and testified that it was not Mayor Harkey, but one of the residents who swore at the Council.

    In time this will be vetted out, but in the meantime, our city is suffering so that the recall proponents can attack a Mayor with one year left on council. Where was this recall years ago? It’s an obvious attempt to seek a personal revenge that they hope will distract Harkey from her Assembly race.

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