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San Diego County Republican Party Plans To Focus On AB 5, School Choice To Win

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The San Diego County Republican Party is summoning the party faithful Monday night to meet and discuss 2020 issues and candidates.

Speaker 1: 00:00 The San Diego County Republican party is summoning the party faithful tonight to meet and discuss 20, 20 issues. And candidates much has been written about the decline of the GOP in California. And last year was a difficult one for local Republicans. Uh, San Diego city council member and the County district attorney both left the party to become independence and a state assembly member switched parties entirely to become a Democrat. Political strategists believed the San Diego board of supervisors could become majority Democrat this year, and a Democrat could also become San Diego's next mayor, but the Republican party plans to fight back. Starting with tonight's small meet and mingle series of caucuses across the County. Joining me is the chairman of the San Diego County Republican party, Tony [inaudible] and Tony, welcome to the program.

Speaker 2: 00:49 Thanks, Maureen.

Speaker 1: 00:50 What are tonight's meetings going to be like? What do you have planned?

Speaker 2: 00:54 Well, these are, uh, we meet every other month, uh, as a whole and the mission Valley usually. And then, uh, on the, uh, odd number of months we meet, uh, out in the, in the County, there's an opportunity for Republicans to get together, uh, with a more local flair to organize and meet local candidates, uh, local elected officials, local activists, uh, and, uh, we haven't been, uh, Carlsbad and it's gonna Deedo, uh, East County, South Bay, you know, scripts ranch and so on. So, uh, there's a, there's a lot of excitement, obviously there, there's a national election coming up, but, uh, what makes the most difference in most people's lives are local offices. And that is the, uh, the prime thing that we focus on at the Republican party, Sandoval County,

Speaker 1: 01:37 one of the key races that San Diego County Republicans need to win this year.

Speaker 2: 01:42 Well, you already mentioned the, uh, supervisor race. Clearly, uh, the unions would like to take control of the County board of supervisors. You see that with the over a six figure spent already again, or already against a supervisor Kristen gas bar, who was the incumbent. Uh, you know, the Democrats have two candidates there, you know, of different flares of, of, uh, of leftists. Uh, I don't think a North County voters are looking for that. Uh, so, but that's going to be a tough one. And of course, uh, for the longest time there was no candidate for, uh, a mayor from the Republican side. You had, uh, uh, two flavors, uh, of Democrats, uh, with Todd, Gloria and Barbara Brie. But, uh, Councilman Scott Sherman threw his hat in the ring, uh, to bring some, uh, common sense above the nonsense, uh, at city hall. So those are two big ones. Uh, but of course there are, uh, there's dozens of races across the County.

Speaker 1: 02:34 Now what about the 50th district? Duncan Hunter has no officially resigned from Congress. The County party didn't endorse a candidate to replace him. Is there a chance that the GOP will now revisit that vote and endorse a candidate for the primary?

Speaker 2: 02:48 Uh, we will revisit it, uh, after March. At this point, there's no more plans. We had a vote. We had a robust debate. Uh, no, none of the three candidates received the two thirds vote of the, so, uh, we will support whoever makes it out of the runoff. And, um, then that person will be most important them and going into November, it is a very Republican district. So, um, Omar in a jar or whatever his name is, um, doesn't really find much of a chance. This is a very, very Republican district. Uh, so we look forward to holding that, uh, come November.

Speaker 1: 03:20 Uh, just to, just to make it clear, it's a Mark cap and a jar who's running on the democratic side and the 50th district. Now the GOP has been effective and using certain issues to fire up voters and win elections. What issues do you see Republicans being able to use in this election?

Speaker 2: 03:37 Well, uh, what do you see blowing up, uh, all over? Uh, social media and Twitter is a AB five. It's, it's absolutely huge. Uh, with the local assembly woman, Lorraine Gonzales, uh, basically effectively, uh, eliminating the gig economy in a, in a, in state and the state of California. So you have a lot of freelancers, be they journalists or interpreters. Um, uh, you know, people who drive for Uber and so forth. I was just in the car this morning with a gentleman. He said, I don't want to be an employee. I want to just turn on my, my, uh, my Uber app and go driving when I need to make a couple of hundred bucks extra. And so, uh, this is really a bridge too far where Lauren goes, Alice, this was quoted as saying, will be great if everybody was an employee and if everybody was a member of a union.

Speaker 2: 04:24 So I think this is putting the cart before the horse. So that is one, uh, huge issue, uh, that the Democrats, uh, just shows that they're, they're, uh, in front of their skis and other one is a age appropriate, uh, sex ed in our schools where the Democrats are having all kinds of discussion with school aged children where our position is that we should teach the basics in school and anything beyond that should be left to families and churches. So those are two examples where the Democrats are, um, in front of the skis, if you will, and where people are paying attention. The third one is school choice. Uh, there's a war on charter schools and, um, that's, uh, you know, most parents would like to be able to choose the school that the kids go to. The Democrats say, no, you must go to the government school that we assign you to. And that also goes against, uh, the feelings of most San Diego

Speaker 1: 05:15 now see a candidate in the 50th district. Carl de Maya recently told KPBS he believes Republicans in California are not putting up a strong enough fight and are surrendering to their circumstances. I wonder what your reaction is to that.

Speaker 2: 05:29 Well, uh, there's no doubt Republicans need to be more on offense. We are right on the issues. Democrats, uh, to their credit, they find all kinds of, uh, idea. They come up with new ideas and their crazy ideas in many cases, but at least they have ideas. And then they'd drive the debate and people started discussing something that wasn't being discussed uh, before. So that's to their credit, uh, Republicans need to do a better job of just, uh, being on offense. Uh, taking our message to voters too often are Republicans water down their is to try to just become like Democrats when people are looking for a, a bold colors, not pale pastels. And uh, uh, we are right on the issues. I just mentioned three issues where I think that's a 70, 80% agreement if you, uh, if you ask San Diego sons on those three issues. So we need to proudly proclaim them. Carla Meyer is one candidate who is certainly never afraid to show his colors and uh, we're encouraging more of our candidates to paint with bold colors and not pale pastels like I mentioned.

Speaker 1: 06:27 So Tony, in your opinion, has the Republican party in San Diego found a strategy to talk about president Trump in a way that doesn't alienate either those that support him or those that don't support him?

Speaker 2: 06:39 Well, obviously, uh, when people are running for local office, there's, they're, uh, advocating for the local issues be there in Sacramento or be they on the border supervisors or be they on there on, on the city council or school boards or planning groups. So the issues are always local. And anyone who's running for local office, if the PR the president be they from whatever party, uh, have a policy that's, that's good for that district, then, uh, they would support that. If it's bad for that district, then they would not support that. So we were talking about local office. It's really, uh, very important to get to know the people and it doesn't say Republican or Democrat on the ballot. So voters, uh, need to do their own homework. They will do their own homework, uh, and, uh, if they want to discuss federal issues, then of course there's a ballot for that to vote for the president or not the president. And you have congressional races as well. So, but for local offices, uh, it's always about, uh, the local issues and everybody I've talked to, all candidates are gonna do what's best for that district regardless of who the president is.

Speaker 1: 07:41 Any more big meetings of the San Diego Republican party coming up before the primary?

Speaker 2: 07:46 Yes. Actually, we're going to have a, our big meeting just before the elections take off on Monday, February 3rd, uh, at mission Valley. Our, uh, we're going to hear from Scott, chairman, candidate for Sandia mayor and Candice Owens, uh, who is the founder of [inaudible], uh, which are black Americans, uh, leaving the Democrat party. And that's going to be another huge, uh, meeting. People can go to San Diego, to RSVP for that. We will also be launching all our, uh, Trump 2020 materials, be the yard signs, rally signs, tee shirts, and so forth. So all freedom loving San Diego that's open to the public, all freedom loving San Diego sons are, uh, are welcome and uh, right can

Speaker 1: 08:30 I've been speaking with the chairman of the San Diego County Republican party, Tony Guevara, and Tony. Thank you.

Speaker 2: 08:35 Thank you.

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Maureen Cavanaugh and Jade Hindmon host KPBS Midday Edition, a daily radio news magazine keeping San Diego in the know on everything from politics to the arts.