Word around Irvine is that termed out Christina Shea wants one more chance to hang on to her council seat by running for Mayor in 2010, which would set up a rematch against current Mayor Suhkee Kang.Â
Using history as a guide, Shea, who has stated in comments on this blog that she “is not a rich woman,” has a history of underperforming when it comes toÂ raising enough money to run.Â This is in spite of her perceived popularity in Irvine.Â Â In every election, Shea needs to find someone,Â (anyone)Â with deep pockets, to run with her on the ticket that can help fund her slate mailers, negative ads,Â and lawn signs thatÂ bear her name and her slate’s name.Â
In previous elections, Shea had candidates likeÂ Mike House, Bill Mavity, Pat Rodgers and John Duong, all of whom either had their own money or the ability to raise considerable funds.Â Now, all indications suggest thatÂ Shea’s “sugar daddy” for 2010 seems to be Jeff Lalloway, her appointee to the Finance Committee.Â
Lalloway is a divorce lawyer, and from all indications, a successful one with pockets deep enough to self-fund his own campaign andÂ cover Shea’s shortcomings in the fundraising department.Â
Lalloway was an opponent of Measure S, a privacy measure that both respects the California Public Records Act andÂ Irvine citizens by protecting the privacy rights of those who provide personal information when they participate in community events and activities.Â Measure S passed overwhelmingly in the city, but Lalloway’s effort for this measure earned him a political appointment by Shea.Â Lalloway also voted down the recent city budget when it was before the finance committee and Lalloway is now going after the Great Park budget with gusto.
While Lalloway may have the money to run, his background suggests he is a hardcore right winger…far too conservative for aÂ progressive city with a progressive city council majority for the past 10 years and a city that voted for President Obama and No on Prop 8 in last November’s elections.Â
Some of Lalloway’s affiliations (thank you Facebook!) include: Rebuild the Party, Republican Party Animals, The Drinking-Smoking-Cussing Wing of the GOP, SoCal Republican Coalition, California Republican Assembly, OC Tea Party, The Great California Tax Revolt of 2009, Darell Steinberg and Karen Bass Must Resign, Red County, and the OC Young Republicans.Â He supports Linda Ackerman for Assembly and Steve Poizner for Governor and is a fan of GOP House Minority Whip Eric Cantor and Louisana Governor Bobby Jindal.Â He’s a member of the pro-airport Lincoln Club and according to his Red County profile, worked on the political campaign hardcore man-on-dog action Senator Rick Santorum which should go over so well with the No on Prop 8 crowd in Irvine (I dare you…Google “Santorum” and click on the first reference”).
So, we have a well-funded tea-bagger poised to fall into the same trap as several other deep-pocketed candidates before him as the city continues to get more progressive by the day.Â
Shea is termed out.Â She has a terrible time raising money, but does have some name-recognition and a base of supporters.Â But Mayor Kang, and Council members Krom and Agran also have a strong base of supporters too and every election seems to be this big push to have the Shea side of Irvine try to persuade the progressives to come over based on a bunch of trumped up politically motivated legal actions or fair play issues. And while a handful of progressives have gone over, it’s not enough to change most minds.Â This is why Irvine’s progressives have won the last six elections.
Complicating things for Shea’s next possible run for mayor is the darkhorse candidacy of Megan Barth, who, according to OC Weekly, is more concerned about what constitutes a Good Republican with her criticism of Michelle Steele’s speaking at a fundraiser for Irvine Mayor Kang, and exaggerating attendance claims at an April 15 Tea Party in Santa Ana where protesters complained about getting a federal tax cut.
Given Shea’s recent record of pandering to the Irvine Police Union over contract negotiations, which is hardly a conservative value of cutting government, and her own track record of higher government spending per resident compared with the current progressive majority’s, Barth is poised to take away hard right voters from Shea while leaving Mayor Kang the moderates and progressive voters.Â
One has to wonder if Allan Bartlett and the Irvine Republican Council will start demanding that Shea and Council member refute their support of the Irvine Police Union’s quest for bonuses in a tight year while still claiming the mantle of “good government” in the same manner that local Republicans harrassed Steele into making a statement placing politics ahead of her long term friendship with Mayor Kang?