Local political campaigns gain speed

With the California primary election just over two months away, political advertisements have emerged all throughout Mission Viejo. (Chloe Hernandez/Lariat)

An indicator of an upcoming election have city roads filled with brightly colored signs adorned with bolded names and patriotic slogans. 

On Mar. 3 Orange County residents will begin the first round of voting for Congress and State Assembly.

California’s 45th Congressional district’s current representative, Katie Porter, has been challenged by six republican hopefuls for office. In the 2018 midterm election Porter became the first democratic representative to serve the 45th district since its establishment in 1983. Her predecessor, two term representative Mimi Walters has stated she will not run for office again in the primary and general elections. 

“I’m running to continue the work I’ve always done – to take on the powerful special interests on behalf of our families,” said Porter on her campaign website when questioned about her motives for running. 

Those campaigning against Porter include retired special education teacher Rhonda Furin, businessman and attorney Christopher J. Gonzalez, Deputy Attorney General Peggy Huang, retired marine colonel and Mission Viejo Mayor Greg Raths, Laguna Hills Mayor Don Sedgwick, and Chapman University Dean Lisa Sparks. 

In addition to Congress, Orange County residents will be voting on new members for State Assembly in the primary.

William “Bill” Brough has been California’s 73rd State Assembly district representative since he gained office in 2014. Brough’s re-election campaign ran into trouble last June, when he was accused by four women of making unwanted sexual advances towards them. Multiple Republican groups have since called for Brough to resign from his position.

“It’s time for Bill Brough to step aside, resign, and open the door for a candidate who can represent South County without degrading the name of the Republican Party,” said John Warner, president of the Lincoln Club of Orange County, in a sit down with the Orange County Register. 

Those campaigning against Brough in the primary include homeland security attorney Chris Duncan (I), business service director Scott Rhinehart (D), Laguna Niguel Mayor Laurie Davies (R), and Mission Viejo Councilman Ed Sachs (R). 

The deadline to register to vote in the primary election is Feb. 18. On election day, Mar. 3, polling stations will be open from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m.