Anaheim Council Stands Firm Against Carving City into Single-Member Districts

The Magic Single-Member District Unicorn is not happy.

The Magic Single-Member District Unicorn is not happy.

In a vote that is sure to annoy the liberal elitists on the Los Angeles Times editorial board, the Anaheim City Council voted 3-2 to reject placing single-member council districts on June 2014 ballot. Mayor Pro Tem Gail Eastman and Councilmembers Lucille Kring and Kris Murray voted in the majority.

In doing so, the council moved forward with implementing a residency-based district system (yes, OCCORDobots: “single-member” isn’t the only type of district) that preserves at-large voting, and gives voters the opportunity to increase the council to six members.

Also going down in flames was the ex poste facto proposal to impose a Form 700 financial disclosure form filing requirement on members of the temporary, advisory Charter Review Committee. It was a transparently political ploy directed at former Mayor Curt Pringle, who has declined to serve on the CRC. There was no coherent, compelling argument for applying to the CRC, and it died on a 4-1 vote.

I watched much of the meeting online but missed the council discussion on the council res-structuring agenda items. I did see the impressive presentation by demographer Dr. Peter Morrison. You can review his Power Point here – and I really recommend that you do.

The bottom line: more Latinos on the City Council is inevitable. The demographics are inexorable, and even if no change is made to the structure of the City Council, sheer weight of numbers will lead to the election of more Latinos in the not too distant future.

Interestingly, Dr. Morrison’s presentation highlighted the difficulty involved in actually trying to carve out single-member districts with Latino-majorities without resorting to Phil Burton-like gerrymandering.

The resolutions implementing Councilwoman Kris Murray’s June 11 motions to create residency-based districts (but still elected at-large) and ask voters to weigh in on increasing the council to 6 members passed on a 3-2 vote (Mayor Pro Tem Gail Eastman and Councilmembers Lucille Kring and Kris Murray again voting in the majority).

Kris Murray’s presentation (which you can view by clicking here). along with Dr. Morrison, really demonstrated the relative success Latino council candidates have been having and seriously undermined the already specious arguments that it is necessary to carve Anaheim into single-member fiefdoms in order to elect more Latinos (or maybe proponents are more interested in electing the right kind of Latinos).

It was a good night for good governance, and a bad night for the progressive mob (which was largely AWOL).

UPDATE: here’s the Los Angeles Times article on the vote, and it is actually pretty balanced. Kris Murray has a money quote:

“I don’t believe we are six or eight Anaheims; I believe we are one city,” she said. “I don’t represent Anaheim Hills. I represent the city of Anaheim.”

Boom. Exactly. I’ve no doubt that belief — not the resentful victimology of Jose F. Moreno & Co. –represents the thinking of the great majority of Anaheim residents.

No comments

  1. Sick of Politics

    Kris Murray was on the money tonight. She did an amazing job laying out all the facts.

  2. Stand For Anaheim

    Kris Murray was amazing last night. She came ready to state her case. Tait had no where to go and he looked like a complete idiot.

  3. It was valuable as an employee and a resident to have the facts laid out so clearly by the demographer who spoke and Council Member Murray’s slides. It was very clear that increasing the size of the council, not single-member districts is the option that leads to greater Hispanic representation. It defied all of the bluster we’ve heard from those suing the city, OCCORD who no-showed last night after a year of trying to force eight single-member districts, and others. The representatives of the Democratic party actually threatened gun shots if they didn’t get their way on single member districts – it was shocking for all to hear sitting in the chamber. Tom Tait could not grasp that residency based districts are a legal option used by other OC cities and school districts in OC. At one point, he actually said, this is no more a district plan than my cup is a banana! He embarasses himself and the city.

  4. So, it will be left to us the voters (in the City of Anaheim), to decide on whether to have a 4 district or 6 or more districts…cutting the City up into pieces just to have more representation among the different races that live in the City of Anaheim?!

    …I knew I was getting whiplash from reading the paragraphs above…

    Perhaps this will be on the agenda at the next Neighborhood Meeting.

  5. p.s. sorry if I offended anyone. Thank you

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