YLRRR backed the election of John Anderson and Jan Horton in 2006. They backed the appointment of Hank Wedda in late 2006/early 2007. Now, two of the three candidates they backed in this election, Nancy Rikel and Mark Schwing, have taken their seats on the dais.
And, what was their first action? The majority bypassed Mrs. Horton for Mayor, instead selecting Mr. Schwing as Mayor and Mr. Anderson as Mayor Pro Tem. (You can watch the video here. Select the “video” link on the December 02, 2008 City Council Meeting line. The selection of the mayor begins at approximately the 3:16 mark.)
Both Mrs. Horton and Mr. Wedda, according to comments by Tom Lynch (Yorba Linda Star, November 13, 2008, Opinion, Page 14), “chose to abandon the YLRRR principles”. This seems to explain why YLRRR did not support Mr. Wedda’s re-election this year and why they by-passed Mrs. Horton for the Mayor’s seat.
However, I have a different take. From where I sit, it all looks quite “orchestrated” to me.
First, we have the election in 2006 where YLRRR backed both Mr. Anderson and Mrs. Horton. They both easily won their seats with Mrs. Horton being the top vote getter.
Next, came the opportunity to gain a third seat on the dais left vacant when Mike Duvall was elected to the State Assembly. YLRRR pushed the appointment of Mr. Wedda. However, Mrs. Horton did not support Mr. Wedda’s appointment. Several YLRRR members expressed their disapproval of Mrs. Horton’s actions before the Council during that appointment process. In my opinion, it was at this point that YLRRR considered Mrs. Horton “no longer one of their own”.
Considering YLRRR did not support Mr. Wedda’s re-election, it appears to me that their support of his appointment was “planned”, knowing they would not support his re-election in 2008 and he would have a difficult time getting re-elected without their support.
Now, with a majority on the Council, they could “put Mrs. Horton in her place” by bypassing her for the Mayor position. Jim Drummond prepared the way for the move in his Political Perspectives column in the November 27, 2008 edition of the Yorba Linda Star, “Two paths to a mayor choice”. Mr. Drummond suggests that the Mayor would be one “who reflected the majority opinion of elected council members”. Ed Rakochy spoke before the Council on December 2, 2008 and suggested that selection of the Mayor is about “leadership”. When the time came to make nominations, Mr. Schwing nominated Mr. Anderson who declined and in turn nominated Mr. Schwing. Clearly, this was all orchestrated.
I expressed my concern about YLRRR controlling the Council the day after the election (Election Results …). And, as their first action demonstrates, they are focusing on the goals of YLRRR and what YLRRR believes to be best for the city. And, if Mr. Rakochy is successful with the recount (Rakochy to call for recount), then their controlling position will be strengthened even more!
I am concerned!
Update 12/14/2008: If you read Jim Drummond’s Political Perspective column in the December 11, 2008 edition of the Yorba Linda Star, “Mayor, pro tem picks signal start of contract for Y.L.”, or you attended or watched the complete meeting of the Council on December 2, you know that not only did the majority pass over Mrs. Horton for Mayor, but they also passed her over for all of the paid board positions. Some have suggested my thoughts are “non-sense”. But, when you look at it from the outside, you can only come to one conclusion, the majority is ensuring Mrs. Horton has no voice in or out of the City!