Mon. Sep 26th, 2022

UPDATE: A four member city council voted tonight to unanimously put to the voters a four term limit of 2 years each for the office of Mayor.



I can understand why the Santa Ana City C0uncil Members are upset at Mayor Miguel Pulido.  Let’s face it – he has been running circles around them for almost 20 years.  But he is now dealing with a Council that, for the most part, he did not elect.  He opposed Sal Tinajero and Michele Martinez when they first ran for the City Council.  He did create David Benavides, but when Vince Sarmiento was appointed to the Council, to replace Jose Solorio, he was already his own man.  Unlike Benavides, he was a polished product and a guy most people respected.  Who would have forseen two Pulido allies going down in flames – Carlos Bustamante’s own alleged misbehavior did him in, and Claudia Alvarez could not undo the term limits she helped create.  Now Pulido, like Julius Caesar, is surrounded by short swords and although we are headed into August, it might as well be the Ides of March.

Back in Pulido’s heyday, he and former City Manager Dave Ream knew how to work this bunch.  Once they got elected, they would be warmly welcomed, even if they had initially been opposed.  Commission appointments would be handed out like Halloween candies and just like that Council members would be subverted.  But Ream is gone and so is his magic bag of redevelopment – and now even the developers that lived high on the hog in our town for so long are slinking to the Council’s side. 

It is all very frustrating to Pulido, who now faces a special meeting on Wednesday, when the Council’s Ad Hoc Term Limits Committee, made up of Martinez, Benavides and Sarmiento, will present three term limits ballot measure options to the rest of the Council: ” two four-year terms; four two-year terms; or a mayor appointed by the council regularly from among its members,” according to the Voice of OC.

The problem with all of these options is the impact they will have on Santa Ana’s standing in Orange County politics.  Whether you love or hate Pulido, the fact is that he wields tremendous influence on the Boards of the Orange County Transportation Authority, which oversees public transportation in our County, and the Southern California Air Quality Management District, which has an immense impact on our local businesses, regulating emissions of every kind. 

Putting a term limit on our Mayor might eventually result in someone other than Pulido representing our city but the real impact will be to negate our influence at the OCTA and the AQMD, and in other local municipal agencies.  What, for example, would Benavides, a candidate for Mayor who is a realtor and mortgage banker, do on board of the OCTA, or the AQMD?  He would be totally overmatched by the other board members.  He would earn a permanent ticket to the little kids’ table.  Tinajero is much sharper but even he would be hard-pressed to find the time to get up to speed, with all the pressure of his full time job as a public school teacher and debate team coach.  

And what if the third option prevailed and we ended up rotating our Mayorship among the Council members?  Imagine what damage Bustamante might have done as Mayor?  Or, if he gets elected to the Council, what would Roman Reyna accomplish as Mayor when his only paid jobs have been at the Boys & Girls Club and the YMCA?  If a volleyball game were to break out at an OCTA meeting I guess he would represent us well, but otherise?  Overmatched would be an understatement.

And what about Martinez?  Sure, she has matured in the past few years but is she ready for the big time?  She got caught this spring talking about an Independent Expenditure by a gambling tribe, and the guy that caught her was an O.C. Register watchdog reporter.  The resulting story was embarrassing and she lost the support of that tribe.  What gaffes would she make now as an appointed Mayor?

Understand that all of this talk about term limits is just the Council Members getting back at Pulido because he tried to force Jill Arthur down their throats – I did not like that either but why cut off your nose to spite your face?  The Council members are reaching collectively for the final option – for the nukes, when backroom finesse might have worked instead.

Santa Ana has enough problems, but losing face and standing in the power circles of the mostly Republican County of Orange is something that should scare us all.  Revenge is not worth this outcome.  And make no mistake about it, for at least one Council Member this is indeed all about revenge.

Martinez told the O.C. Register that “Nothing here is personal,” she added. “I’m just trying to do the right thing for the city.”  That is a load of crap.  All the movers and shakers in town knows she blames Pulido for her loss in the June primary, to Tom Daly and an unknown Republican, Jose Moreno.  But you know I advised her to attack Daly and she chose instead to send a cardstock magazine about herself to the voters.  Had she sent even ONE negative mailer about Daly to the voters she might have prevailed, but she didn’t.  How is that Pulido’s fault? 

I would much rather see the Council upstarts and Pulido challengers actually make a strong case to the voters and beat him at the ballot box.  I would respect that much more.  Term limits?  Please.  Pulido faces term limits every two years and he keeps on winning largely because his challengers have always been pretty damn lame.  Will they be any different this year?  I guess we’ll see about that.  Pulido is a good speaker but the Council debates might prove to be a bloodbath.  He isn’t very good at impromptu speeches.  He is much better at programmed presentations.  This is however a brave new world.  The old ways are being tossed out and now it is all going to come down to who can make the best case to the voters, come November.

By Editor

Art Pedroza started Orange County's first political blog, the Orange Juice, back in 2003. He now publishes the top civic blog in Orange County - New Santa Ana, plus other blogs including New Anaheim, New Fullerton and the Irvine News Blog, as well as the OC Politics Blog.

30 thoughts on “UPDATE: City Council places Mayoral term limit measure on the Nov. ballot”
  1. Art, you are again correct. What do you think the rest of the Orange County elected officials think of Santa Ana and its current electeds? Not much. It is only because of Pulidos time being involved and his one on one people skills that he has managed to get himself on this County boards. Much of the Federal and State tax dollars that were brought back to Santa Ana came from Pulidos efforts. If this Jill Arthur staff person is a weight around his neck then the City Manager should send her to another department. Without Pulido and his standing in the County Santa Ana is nothing more than and Orange County version of Bell, Compton, Cudahay, South Gate, or Vernan. Dan Young was a great first elected Mayor and Pulido has also done a good job. Unless someone like Lou Correa steps in to run for Mayor we are in for big trouble if and when Pulido leaves office. Businesses stay, and non-profits can raise money to work here because people see stability and a positive future even with all of the cities gangs and crime. Take that stability away and you have a city forever lost.

  2. Notwithstanding your personal bias here and there Art, I do generally agree with your opinions.

    However, the problem is much deeper. This city is refusing to act as a city by not over-regulating a small business with a morality when council consists of sex offenders and I do not mean only Carlos.

    They are simply all bunch of pigs not allowing any entrepreneurial activity by business and gangs. There is nothing you can do with people like that.

    That is why I have gave up because I would never prevail in making these moron mongoloids to act intelligently if they have no IQ.

    My lifetime experience teaches me to let nature resolve the problems. Historically it is always major crises which make people to care about themselves.

    You can’t change liberals and they are the majority and main problem not only for Santa Ana but the entire world.

    1. Socialism is a failure no matter where it is applied. The people in our city are not by the way liberals. In Santa Ana it is the 1% who are fiscal liberals.

      1. “In Santa Ana it is the 1% who are fiscal liberals”….. Hmmmmmm

        Virtually everyone who believes in global warming, illegal immigration, unions and redistribution of the wealth is liberal which is 99% according to the OCCUPY movement.

  3. “Unless someone like Lou Correa steps in to run for Mayor we are in for big trouble if and when Pulido leaves office”…….. Hmmmmmm

    This is a major problem when people are recycling idiots like Correa. He is liar served on virtually every elected post, including OC supervisor, hopping from one term limit to another and never accomplished anything except making babies, only got knows how many legitimates he made and getting drunk.

    And he would save the city?…… Huh?

  4. The best government is the dysfunctional one and that is what we are getting now….. lets enjoy it.

    I would like Tinajero to be elected as a Mayor to prove, once for all, the Darwin theory of the evolution.

  5. I liked your story about the Halloween Candy Corn being all gone now. I am sure there are some kernals hiding in that bag somewhere. But God bless the Pueblo of Santa Ana! It is making progress, unlike Anaheimistan.

    1. “But God bless the Pueblo of Santa Ana! It is making progress, unlike Anaheimistan”…… Hmmmmmm

      You are such an idiot TEO.

      The Walters’ and Pulido’s SAPD13 plaid major role in the militarization of Anaheim. They deployed SWAT and horse riders and snipers.

      For your information the SAPD13 is most militarized force in the county thanks to Alvarez’s commission. They also maintain clandestine Air force in the Fullerton airport.

      Go back to your six-pack.

  6. Anaheim is a Corporate Police State! Last time I walked through Santa Ana it remained a Free State! Pulido and Cheif Walters, please keep Santa Ana a Free State. No police shootings of under-represented people please.

    1. “Anaheim is a Corporate Police State!”……. Hmmmmmmm

      What do you mean by “Corporate” you occupying lumpenproletariat.

      How many deadly execution stile shootings were there this year in Santa Ana?…. Huh?

    1. You’re entitled to your opinion. And my opinion is that your comment displays an inability to debate these issues like an adult. Get back to the kiddie pool!

  7. It looks like they are imploding and it doesn’t bode well for the city when the council members are looking for any trick in the book to get rid of the mayor. I don’t think it makes sense to have term limits on council members but not the mayor though. It almost feels like a monarchy although I do understand that the people of SA continue to elect him.

  8. Those who don’t study history will repeat the mistakes of the past.

    These new choices are a repeat of a system that was in place in the late 60’s to mid 80’s, that was a time period that the city of Santa Ana fell to a historic low.

    If there is some kind of problem with the way the city is being run, that would be a problem with the unelected city management. And they have no employment contract term limits or life time service caps.

  9. Fiala, someday I will reveal to you the truth about operation Anaheimistan. The Pueblo was not about to let them have competitive Colony down there. Let’s just leave it at that. or you can give Walters a call.

  10. “or you can give Walters a call”……. Hmmmmmmm

    FYI, I am in touch with Walters by email very frequently.

    However, based on my IQ and my ESL I am unable to deduct what are you talking about, TEO.

    So try again but be sober, TEO!

  11. A four member city council voted unanimously to put to the voters a four term limit of 2 years each for the office of mayor.

    1. “a four term limit of 2 years each for the office of mayor”……. Hmmmmm

      Retroactive?

      Count start when?

      Ambiguous?

      Who voted?

      Martinez
      Tinajero
      Benavides
      Sarmiento

      Pulido?
      Alvarez?
      Bustamante?

  12. This will last until one of the current Council becomes Mayor at which time they will decide that for the good of the people of Santa Ana that Mayoral term limits must be extended or removed.
    You heard it here first….

  13. Long after these happenings
    the people of Santa Ana, influenced by the Moon,
    in the years following the fall of Bustamonte,
    will see several other members of their City Council,
    like those of the Kingdoms of Vernan, Bell, and Cudahey,
    enter the Great Prisons in the North of California (1:49)

  14. Why would be give the Mayor 8 years but the City Council 12 years? What’s up with that? Makes no sense to me. I’m no math major but I think they should be the same…8 years for both or 12 for both. I bet if they put something up for a vote that was 8 years for Mayor, 8 years for Council..it would pass…but this seems like it just might be political like the way they keep raising tuition. Vote Briseno on Nov. 6!

  15. You silly people!

    It must be all approved by you!

    And if you are moron mongoloids then it will be approved by you!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  16. If understand Cook correctly, I think he is brilliant in that:

    A) We have term limits now; It’s called an election. If you don’t like your representitive: DON’T REELECT THEM.
    But, when people who can’t/don’t vote chime in and insist that this the answer, we should all pay close attention.

    B)The unelected civic emplyees are much more dangerous (and costly) than anyone on the Right or Left wants to admit.

    C)The city has excelled for a long time under Pulido’s tutilege, for a number of related and unrelated reasons, but it has. Maybe, those who write about this are too young or ignorant to remember the Skagg’s drug store debacle or the heyday of Zeb’s Boathouse.

    Forgive them, they not know what they wish for (or that they don’t live here).

  17. Let’s get one thing straight; The four council members simply voted to make this a ballot measure. Yes, it sends a strong message against Pulido, but it is in the voters hands. We can vote to approve this or not. It’s a wonderful thing that the residents of Santa Ana will be able to decide on this.

    And the idea that Pulido wields some great power in the county because he sits on the boards of OCTA and AQMD…are you serious? A newly elected mayor could easily get appointments to these or similar boards. And I know that Benavides or Tinajero could represent us well.

    Pulido has over stayed his welcome, but I believe the main reason he’s losing his grip is that he has given no vision to SA residents about where he could lead this great city.

    I’m curious to see what candidate can step up and cast some vision. Santa Ana is the truly wonderful city. We need leadership who loves this city and casts a vision for its future.

  18. I’ll buy into some of what Curious is saying. 25 years is a long tome and it’s tasting stale.

    But, I can’t believe that Benievdes, Martinez or Tinajero has what it takes to lead. A realtor an HR clerk and a teacher? So Sal get’s the nod for experience, but still.

    Pulido rode to power on a great campaign, a fight of and for the people. that is rare and for someone to repeat thatimprobable for a city the size of Santa Ana.

    If ANYBODY stood up and used the words “Truly Wonderful City” they should be disqualified. It is a great place, beset with many challenges (too numerous to list), and determing which challenges matter most to it’s citizens and it’s own survival should be the discussion. Not who plays what sport where, not which district should be annoited.

    Santa Ana has done well to limit the influence from outside so far. I don’t think any of the three I mentioned are strong enough to repell the kind of negative influence being imparted on the likes of Anaheim.

    Lastly, Maybe Miguel should steal a page from irvine. They have squandered away hundreds of million of taxpayers dollars (not thier own, the counties) on a FAILED GREAT PARK. The actions border on criminal, yet he and his Cabal seem to be slated for reelection. This guy makes Mubarrack look like the pope. So anything is possible for Miguel.

  19. I hear Pulido has no influence on the OCTA Board. He often misses meetings and other Board Members know he’s only on the board to collect a stipend.

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