Political Briefs


election bannerRouda Overtakes His Opponent

Harley Rouda
Harley Rouda

Democrat Harley Rouda edged past his Democratic opponent Hans Keirstead by a 62-vote margin in the still undecided race to determine who will challenge Rep. Dana Rohrabacher in November in the 48thCongressional District.

Rohrabacher, a Republican and 15-term incumbent from Costa Mesa, easily won the most votes in the top-two primary June 5 with 30.3 percent. But the outcome of the No. 2 slot remains too close to call until the final votes are counted. The lead has flipped back and forth and narrowed as mail-in and provisional ballots have been counted.

As of Wednesday, June 20, Rouda holds 17.3 percent of the vote to Keirstead’s 17.2 percent. About 19,397 ballots remain to be counted. Results from the June 5 primary are not expected to be finalized until Tuesday, June 26, County Registrar Neal Kelley said.


Christoph Seeks a Return to Elected Office

Ann Christoph, a soft-spoken and steadfast community activist who in recent years has often critiqued city proposals in public hearings, now seeks a seat on the dias as a City Council member.

 Ann Christoph
Ann Christoph

The Independent columnist and former mayor has been out of office for more than two decades, but never far from public life as an advocate on issues including the community garden, historic preservation and the village entrance.

“The frustrations with the city processes as noted in the column are part of the reason,” she said of her candidacy. “There are positive approaches that can make for better decision making and better results.”

She said she filed preliminary forms at the city and state level, though the formal filing is not due until August.

Christoph becomes the seventh candidate to join the race for three council positions, determined by the outcome of November’s election. Others so far are Peter Blake, Michele Hall, Sue Kempf, Cheryl Kinsman, Judie Mancuso and incumbent Rob Zur Schmiede.

Mayor Kelly Boyd is retiring from public office and Toni Iseman has not declared her intentions.

Christoph said Iseman did not ask her to run.



Zur Schmiede Kicks Off Re-Election Bid

Rob ZurSchmiede
Rob ZurSchmiede

Planning and development professional and first-term Laguna Beach City Council member Robert M. Zur Schmiede begins his campaign to seek re-election at a 3:30 p.m. reception and fundraiser Sunday, June 24, at the home of Sharon and Roger McErlane, 483 Linden St.

Zur Schmiede, current mayor pro tem, will speak about his ideas for addressing the issues and his continued commitment to responsive, transparent city governance, says a statement from his campaign.

The reception is open to the public and a minimum $99 donation is requested. RSVP to [email protected].

Supporters include Michelle and Kelly Boyd, Betsy and Gary Jenkins, Peggie and John Thomas, Lisa and John Mansour, Stephanie and Morris Skendarian, Kristen and Bob Whalen, Leticia and Mark Christy, Susan and Dr. John Hamil, Dora Wexell Orgill and Mark Orgill, and Beth and Dana Garlock.



Rohrabacher’s ‘Sober Living’ Bill Passes House

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher
Rep. Dana Rohrabacher

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, whose district includes Laguna Beach, applauded House approval of H.R. 5735, which included his amendment to restrict Section 8 housing vouchers from distribution to some sober living homes.

His amendment allows local governments to have a say in making awards to eligible facilities, those that have validated models of recovery and life skills training.

The bill, which extends Section 8 housing provisions to families with members in recovery from substance use disorder, passed by a vote of 230 to 173 earlier this month.






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