Van Tran Gaining on Democrat Loretta Sanchez in Calif.

October 4, 2010
By James L. Hirsen, J.D., Ph.D.
contributor to

Ever since she pulled off an upset back in 1996 in her run against Republican Rep. Robert K. Dornan, California Rep. Loretta Sanchez has coasted to re-election.

But similar to a lot of districts around the country, the upcoming midterm election is a virtual coin toss, and Orange County’s sole Democratic House member may be in trouble.

Sanchez’s opponent, California Assemblyman Van Tran, is only 2 points behind her (Sanchez 45 percent, Tran 43 percent). The Rothenberg Political Report, Cook Political Report, and Larry Sabato have all downgraded Sanchez’s chances.

Complicating things further, during an interview with Univision, Sanchez gave the race national attention when she accused Tran of being “very anti-immigrant” and “very anti-Hispanic.”

So who’s a Democrat going to call when things get iffy? The former president, Bill Clinton, of course.

He’ll be featured at a Sanchez campaign event on Oct. 15.

Sanchez is hoping that Bill will move the ball and get enough yardage to place her beyond the margin of error.

In more left coast campaign news, there may be some trouble brewing, and it’s not for the GOP gubernatorial candidate.

After having come into this country illegally, Nicandra Diaz Santillan, former housekeeper of Meg Whitman who is running for the California governor seat, reportedly gave to Whitman and her husband fraudulent documents, which falsely indicated that Diaz Santillan was in the country legally.

It is a felony in California to use the personal identifying information of another person without the authorization of that person for any unlawful purpose. As a consequence, Diaz Santillan faces possible prosecution.

Don’t expect Attorney General Jerry Brown to do anything on that matter, though. He’s too busy campaigning to be California’s governor — again.

There is also federal criminal law that has been violated, but that would require Eric Holder’s Justice Department to take some action. Don’t hold your breath on that one either.

Then there are Gloria Allred’s actions. As an attorney, Allred is required to act in the best interest of her client.

When Allred called a press conference and let the world know that Diaz Santillan was in the country illegally and is a likely felon, it certainly did her client harm.

The only beneficiary of Allred’s publicity looks to be the Brown campaign.

Allred, a diehard Democrat, has contributed cash to Brown’s previous campaigns. She was also a Hillary Clinton delegate in 2008.

In 2003, one day before California's gubernatorial election back when Arnold Schwarzenegger was actually a Republican, a woman named Rhonda Miller surfaced. She had just filed a lawsuit alleging sexual harassment against Arnold.

The suit was unceremoniously dropped following the election.

But even if the case wasn’t memorable, Miller’s lawyer was.

Her name? Gloria Allred.