During a victory-style town hall, Congressman-Elect Gil Cisneros (D-Orange County) addressed a plethora of excited supporters as he laid out the goals for his future tenure.
He told the Buena Park crowd “I am so humbled and honored,” and “this is only the beginning of the hard work. You will definitely have access to me. We’re going to do town halls. We’re going to be out there, everywhere.”
Cisneros, the retired Navy veteran, 2010 lottery winner and self-described “independent leader”, fueled the enthusiastic chants as he promised his top priorities will be focused on healthcare, “common sense” gun legislation and immigration reform. The first of the trio, proving to be a major issue that also helped propel other Democratic upsets within the historically profound red county.
Following a long, contentious two weeks after Election Day Cisneros was able to defeat his Republican challenger Young Kim who he characterized as a continuation of district 39’s retiring Incumbent Republican Ed Royce and additionally President Trump.
Originally, Young Kim’s Election Day lead seemed substantial enough to carry her to victory, however, day by day vote counting rejected this notion and added for some amusing antics from both sides.
First, the California Globe noted how Kim was on track to win following Election Day’s vote margin and then last week we highlighted how her lead had been cut to just 122 votes. Despite this, due to California’s unique voting system where ballots postmarked by midnight on Election Day are acceptable, Cisneros has resonated massively with late voters.
Two weeks ago, the Kim campaign accused the Cisneros campaign of being “rebuked” by the Los Angeles Registrar and County Clerk’s office after alleging that instances of ballot tampering had been taking place.
Her campaign put out a statement saying “The Gil Cisneros Campaign has been desperate to influence and alter the outcome of this race by harassing and intimidating vote counters in Orange County,” before adding “Those nefarious actions reflect a campaign…that will do anything in their desperate effort to change the results.”
In Congressional District 45 Republican Mimi Walters, who lost, experienced a similar phenomenon that can best be described as older, more conservative voters having a tendency to vote earlier while younger, left-leaning voters usually cast their ballots closer to Election Day.
Then, according to Business Insider, “the Cisneros campaign accused the Kim campaign of ‘blatantly lying’ in their allegations of ballot tampering, and further alleged that a representative for the Kim campaign had, in fact, been asked to leave the premises of the LA County Registrar’s Office for photographing and attempting to tamper with ballots.” The LA County Registrar denied the Kim campaign’s allegations of ballot interference.
All antics set aside; astonishingly, Cisneros was able to soar to a decisive victory gathering 3,495 more votes than Kim. When he takes office in January, expect health care, immigration and gun laws to serve as a major emphasis of his governance.
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