On October 15, the City of Anaheim filed a motion with the OC Superior Court to continuing the hearing on its various motions regarding the California Voting Rights Act (CVRA) lawsuit plaintiff Jose Moreno, which seeks to force the city to adopt a single-member district system of electing the city council. Moreno and his co-plaintiffs are being represented by the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), and claim the current at-large system hasn’t produced enough Latino council members and must therefore be cast aside in favor of a method they claim will do the job of electing more councilmembers of the preferred ethnicity.
Judge Franz Miller moved the hearing to November 5.
As readers know, Moreno is an elected member of the governing board of the Anaheim City School District’s Board of Education – which, like the Anaheim City Council, is elected at-large. The population of the ACSD is significantly more Latino than the City of Anaheim’s, and Latinos are elected to the ACSD Board of Education at about the same rate as to the Anaheim City Council.
ACSD could shift to the same by-district method Moreno wishes to impose on the Anaheim City Council simply by voting to do so and getting an easily-obtained waiver from the state Board of Education. There is plenty of time to do this so that Moreno can seek re-election next year via the “neighbor voting for neighbor” system he praises, instead of the at-large system that he contends disenfranchises Latino voters. After all, if an at-large system disenfranchises Latinos when they cast ballots for Anaheim City Council, it must also disenfranchise them when they cast ballots for ACSDS Board of Education.
To date, Moreno has taken no action to walk his talk when it comes to his own school district. indeed, in recent weeks he has passed up golden opportunities to do when the issue of school board election method and the CVRA was on the ACSD Board of Education agenda (see my posts here and here).
Could it be the re-election prospects of Anaheim’s only “Spanish-speaking, Spanish-dominant, Latino-surnamed” elected local elected would be diminished under a single-member district system?
It’s also interesting that the same people and organizations who cry out at the injustice of the City of Anaheim’s at-large system – such as OCCORD, UNITE-HERE, Los Amigos, the OC Labor Federation, the OC Democratic Pary, Vern Nelson, Greg Diamond, Cynthia Ward, etc. — have said and done nothing about the subject when it comes to the ACSD. When it comes to electing an ACSD Board of Education that “looks like” its constituents (at least in the racial sense), these folks don’t think “It’s time, Anaheim!
It would also be interesting if it ever occurs to any of the reporters who have covered this issue to ask Moreno about this glaringly obvious discrepancy.