The Rumor That Refused to Die…Ackerman for Irvine Mayor

After the GOP Flag Day event, Frank Mickadeit published State Senator Dick Ackerman’s denial of the rumor Ackerman would run for Mayor of Irvine once his term in the State Senate ended.  I thought (and so did Red County’s Matt Cunningham) that Frank was two weeks late to a story we broke in the blogs.

Or was he?

I have several emails today from reliable sources close to Irvine politics that Ackerman will indeed run for Mayor but will deny it up to the filing date.  Tom Collins, Ackerman’s spokesman in Sacramento, said, “I have no information on this to comment.”  Ackerman’s Tustin office denied the rumor but will be getting back to me tomorrow with more details.

Photo courtesy of the Sacramento Bee. More after the jump….

The most interesting part of the rumor is that Ackerman’s candidacy is being ecouraged by none other than Irvine Council Member Christina Shea, who has declared for the Mayor’s seat.  Shea’s going to have to run on a record of voting “no” on a number of issues that have moved the city forward and has little in the way of accomplishment to show for her six years on the Council.  Being an obstructionist to progress is hardly a winning campaign platform.

But Shea is still a popular figure among longtime Irvine residents; the city has about doubled in size since she was mayor, so she’s going to have a tough sell to take credit for the prosperity of the last eight years.  She’s even garnered some criticism from right wing blogs for her lack of conservative positions in the last primary election.  BY backing out and supporting Ackerman, she can use the old “good for the city and good for the party” line.  Ackerman told Micakdeit he fully supports Shea for Mayor. The sources say, wait and see.

So if Ackerman were to run, Shea has a safe council seat as does Suhkee Kang, who has also declared for Mayor on the KeepIrvineGreat ticket. 

With Shea out of the race, and if Ackerman were to win (I personally don’t think so due to a considerable number of IUSD parents downright pissed off at the Senator), then the election pits the three remaining council members in an electoral game of musical chairs. I think Larry Agran and Beth Krom would be overwhelminngly re-elected, the odd man out if Council member Stephen Choi. 

Dr. Choi has been on a losing streak of late.  He had to drop out of the race for the AD-71 Assembly due to poor support and a platform that confused even Flash Report publisher Jon Fleischman. And Choi lost an election for a spot on the Republican Central Committee where he was up for re-election.  If the Republicans throw another candidate up for the City Council sppot, I think that candidate would pose more a threat to Choi than either Agran or Krom.

Lots of ifs and buts here, and if “ifs and buts were candy and nuts, it’d be Christmas every day.”  So if Shea does back out of the mayor’s race for Ackerman and the GOP runs a third candidate for the council seat, is Shea really throwing Choi under the bus while appearing to support him?

Now I realize some of this seems far fetched, but the gist of the multiple tips were “denials on Ackerman’s candidacy until papers are pulled.”  It’s going to be an interesting race indeed.