Congressional Musical Chairs

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A few months back it was apparent that a lot of GOP politicians were already jockeying for a pole position in the 2014 elections. In some cases these were elected officials who were termed out of their existing jobs.

At the time (Living On Autopay, 10/7/13), I wrote, “Might be fun if one of these politicians took on Congressman Dana Rohrabacher in 2014. He’s now in his 13th term, and he should be at the top of the GOP seniority heap. Instead, he collects his pay and votes the party line “no” on everything, although no one would accuse him of hiding in the woodwork. Unfortunately, if his committee assignments tell us anything, the GOP leadership doesn’t take his rants seriously, and he has squandered his seniority.”

Last week it was rumored that Costa Mesa councilwoman Wendy Leece might be on the verge of filing for the 48th Congressional seat. Leece has well established conservative views on most issues, so we liberals couldn’t count on her to suddenly support Obamacare or back an increase in the minimum wage to $10 an hour. But she has shown a maverick streak from time to time, so she might make an interesting challenger to Rohrabacher.

Leece probably didn’t get the idea to challenge Rohrabacher from the Independent. We don’t distribute in her neck of the woods. In fact, when I dropped the idea in my column last October, I had in mind a couple of Newport Beach councilwomen who are termed out. That would be Leslie Daigle or Nancy Gardner. Love to see either one make a run for a seat we liberals have no chance of winning until the hot place down under freezes over.

Politics being what they are, it’s also frightening to think of one possible unintended consequence of a Leece challenge—if it encourages Costa Mesa Mayor Jim Righeimer to jump in. Historically, the GOP hands out endorsements as a reward for party loyalty and waiting your turn. Righeimer seems to be patiently waiting his turn till Rohrabacher finally realizes he is the true Mr. Irrelevant in Orange County.

But if Leece upsets the order of things, Righeimer might think he too should jump the gun.

Rigrohraheimerbacher. Hard to see any difference between those choices. So call your local councilwomen and encourage them to consider running.


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