I just got off the phone with Orange County Clerk-Recorder Tom Daly and he has confirmed that he has decided to not run for the Fourth District Board of Supervisor’s seat vacated by Chris Norby last month to take his seat in the State Assembly.
The possible replacement of Norby by a democrat was placed into question when Anaheim City Council member Lorri Galloway and La Habra Council member Rose Espinoza announced their desire to run for the seat. While Daly had a decent shot at beating Fullerton Council member Shawn Nelson in a head to head contest, facing other democrats at the same time made success more doubtful.
Daly has instead chosen to run for another term as Clerk-Recorder. Currently the main opponent for Daly in that contest will be Hugh Nguyen. When we spoke to Nguyen last month at a reception welcoming Senator Lou Correa’s new Chief of Staff Andy Hall, Nguyen told us that if Daly opted to run for Clerk-Recorder instead of Supervisor he would likely reconsider his candidacy. We have a call in to Nguyen for comment.
UPDATE: Hugh Nguyen called me at about 5:45 pm this afternoonÂ to let me know that he has been telling those asking about his plans that “he has not reached any final decisions” regarding the future course of his campaign for Clerk-Recorder. He said that he will be meeting with his campaign manager over the next few days to determine his next steps and will let his supporters, and the media, know his what his plans are once they are determined. Those decisions will likely be made within the next week or so.
The departure of Daly leaves many of his supporters in a difficult position. Galloway has been criticized for recently moving into the district to run for the Fourth District Supervisor slot. Her democratic detractors, as well as republicans, view Galloway as nothing more than an opportunist carpetbagger. Galloway supporters on the other hand cite the fact that she has represented Anaheim residents for the past five years, and that they make up 40% of the residents of the Fourth District.
Also in the race in addition to Shawn Nelson is Anaheim Council Member Harry Sidhu, a republican. It has been rumored that Espinoza will drop her bid prior to the filing deadline due to her inability to raise significant funds to mount a credible campaign.
There is no word at this point if the major county public employee unions Orange County Employees Association and the Orange County Association of Deputy Sheriffs plan to spend big against Nelson in support of either Sidhu or Galloway. Word on the street is that given the choices available, they may simply sit this one out.
The winner of the June primary will complete the unexpired portion of Chris Norby’s term and hold the position of incumbant if no one receives more than 50% of the vote in June. The election to fill the next four year term would be decided in November in that case.
Rumors of Daly’s departure from the Supes race started earlier this afternoon when the email below started to circulate through cyberspace. The email address was unfamiliar to many Daly supporters who suspected it may have been a phony email sent out by the Galloway or Nelson campaigns.
From: Tom Daly Date: Feb 19, 2010 1:02 PM
Subject: Change of Plans
My campaign for Orange County Supervisor, which you have supported for many months, is demanding far more time than I ever imagined. As a husband and father, I’ve learned that the evenings and weekends away from family can’t be recovered. Time is precious when a cute 6-year old boy wants to play catch with his dad, not walk precincts.
So rather than running for Supervisor in the upcoming June election, I will be filing for re-election as OC Clerk-Recorder. I’ll campaign on my record of innovation and providing quality service to the department’s customers.
We all want the best for our great County of Orange. Let’s keep working together to find productive solutions and help each other.
I’ve come to learn about friendship and loyalty through this process, and that’s why I’m especially grateful for the support you’ve offered.
Thank you so very much.