One of our readersÂ sent us the followingÂ commentary regarding the City Council race in Anaheim. We are pleased to submit his thoughts on that contest for your consideration.
By Daniel Lamb
Anaheim politics have never been so… strange.
After an eerie calm, the political crossfire is heating up, as battle lines are being drawn and re-drawn in the race for city council.
The GOP mayor, Curt Pringle, is opposing his former council ally Lorri Galloway, the only Democrat left in city hall, in her campaign for re-election, despite her endorsements from prominent party figures on both sides of the isle.
Pringle was forced to turn on his once productive relationship with Galloway in the face of intense pressure from Disneyâ€™s lobbying operation in Anaheim. Disney is determined to form a more â€œresort friendly council.â€ In return for the mayorâ€™s support, the mayor would have a governing majority, which he needs to achieve much of anything.
Disney is furious at Councilmember Lorri Galloway for supporting a residential housing project in the resort district. She supported the union workers of the resort who are desperately seeking an affordable place to live. The Disney Corporation spent millions forming the group: Save Our Anaheim Resort (SOAR). The group targeted Galloway and recruited people in the community to spread inflammatory information. For example, they claimed Anaheim residents would lose their police and fire services if Disneyâ€™s wishes were not met. The meanness of Mickey Mouse made national headlines.
Disneyâ€™s lobbyist planed to scare policy makers into unquestionably supporting Disney using SOAR as a front pressure group. Anyone who crossed SOAR would be labeled anti-resort, anti-business, and anti-Anaheim. Lorri Galloway resisted Disneyâ€™s heavy-handed lobbying efforts and is now on the other side of goliathâ€™s wrath.
Galloway is still sporting a healthy lead in her re-election bid, despite the massive attempt to slander her name. Turning up the heat, Disney, with the help of Mayor Pringle and the Republican Party, formed a PAC called Citizens for Anaheim’s Future (CAF) with the stated purpose of supporting Pringle’s allies running for Council. The Disney/Pringle controlled CAF is supporting planning commissioner Gale Eastmanâ€™s effort to unseat Galloway. Eastman, who switched her party ID from Republican to decline to state when she decided to run for office, could be counted on to support both the Mayor and Disney on all major issues and thus give the mayor and Disney what they want, control.
Disney has currently given $25,000 to CAF and donâ€™t be surprised if they find a way to contribute more cash through the Republican Party of Orange County and party leader Scott Baugh.
Gallowayâ€™s relationship with the Democratic Party has not been perfect, as many know. Her moderation and friendship with certain republicans has fueled some liberal opposition. However, If Disney succeeds in bullying her out of office, the only progressive voice on the city council would be gone, mostly to the detriment of the cityâ€™s workers. Disney Corpâ€™s unprecedented intervention must be called out and stopped.
For more information about Lorri Galloway’s campaign visit her website at LorriGalloway.com.