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Letters to the Editor

Will democracy survive the mid-term elections?

President Biden’s address to the nation last Thursday evening was a clarion call to save democracy. How can democracy survive if its bedrock foundation, free and fair elections, continues to be undermined and attacked by millions of people claiming to be patriotic Americans? Simply put, it can’t.

Looking ahead to the November mid-terms, I have two overarching questions: First, if local, GOP candidates like Michelle Steel, Diane Dixon and Scott Baugh lose, will they claim their defeats are the result of rigged elections? And second, will they clog the courts with the same unfounded examples of ballot tampering that judges, appointed by both Republican and Democratic presidents, rejected in 2020? 

Election deniers inspired by Donald Trump are running for high-profile, statewide offices coast to coast. My guess is many more deniers, some of whom may live in Orange County, are seeking city council, school board or water board seats as well. To each of them I ask this question: Which is more important, your winning based on discredited, unproven “truths” about rigged results or democracy enduring based on free, fair and legitimate elections? I support the president’s call to action.

Denny Freidenrich

Laguna Beach 

This writer used to be a Republican

I grew up in a Republican family, graduated from USC, and worked for Republican Rep. Bob Dornan. As far as I was concerned, if a candidate had an “R” after his or her name, they could count on me to support their campaign. But that was then and this is now. This is why I am writing about Judie Mancuso, a different kind of Democratic candidate running in the 72nd Assembly District (which includes the coastal communities of Newport, Laguna, Huntington Beach and Seal Beach).     

For starters, Judie understands the critical connection between clean beaches and vibrant, local businesses. Personally, I view this relationship as vital to my family’s future health and welfare. Despite the fact numerous local elected officials attended a rally Judie organized after last October’s 25,000 gallon oil spill in OC, her current Assembly opponent, Diane Dixon, was nowhere to be found that day. 

Second, Judie is against raising taxes. That’s why she opposes Prop. 30, the tax on income above $2 million, on the ballot this fall. I am also against it. And lastly, Judie supports seniors like myself. She believes the $35 monthly cap on insulin is a game-changer. I couldn’t agree more. (Interestingly, every GOP lawmaker in Congress, including our own Rep. Michelle Steel, voted against this provision in the new Inflation Reduction Act, but now she is campaigning like the cap was her idea. Go figure.)

Every election season is an opportunity to reset political priorities. I honestly believe Judie Mancuso’s priorities are right for Orange County. Even if you are a Republican who votes the party line like I used to, I urge you to take a serious look at Judie. I don’t think you will be disappointed. 

Stan Mullin

Newport Beach


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