Kang vs Shea: the Safe Seat Election

Christina SheaHT to the Register and Thursday Irvine World News who broke the news that former Mayor and current Irvine council member Christina Shea will challenge current council member Sukhee Kang for Mayor in 2008.

Two comments:  Its June 2007; you are both a year early.  Secondly, the loser keeps their council seat, so there is hardly any risk to either candidate.

Suhkee KangIn a battle of wits, its not a fair fight.  Sukhee wins hands down.  He has great fund raising skills, better business experience, and a powerful network of voters who like th eway Irvine has been run for the past seven years.

Shea is a popular figure in Irvine, but as mayor, the priorities are just a tad … off.

The commission on making Irvine a more romantic city comes to mind.  I also seem to recall her authorizing a large payment to a consultant to study building a football stadium and going after an NFL franchise for Irvine ($75K I think, and please feel free to correct me Ms. Shea.). 

Little progress in stopping the airport on her watch. 

And there’s that support for a Grand Jury report that recommends the county BOS take control of the Great Park development she supported very publicly. “People in Irvine like their cars” followed by “Traffic management is a major problem.” 

Her vote against Ken Smith’s design team for the Great Park won’t be forgotten easily.  And there’s the whole “No Gay Pride Parades in Irvine” that served as her political coming out party.

There’s the ongoing problem that city staff has to explain every nuance of any proposal in the simplest terms possible (the recent Wild Rivers to the Great Park idea would be a good example).

And when all else fails, there are harsh and threatening phone calls and/or voice mails to the police department, council members, the union chief for city employees, all indicative of a management style ill suited for Irvine’s continued growth.  Its the mayor’s office, not student council.  It’s hard to play the victim card regularly.

In Sukhee’s corner, he’s on record that he made fun of the governor’s accent, once (like we all haven’t?). 

Irvine has grown by nearly a third since she was mayor; there are a lot of new residents who are a shade more purple than red.  All I can say now is where is Jeff Kramer when you really need him?