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Wednesday, December 6, 2023

By rejecting Jessie Lopez recall, Santa Ana voters sent a clear message to the police union – Orange County Register

Public-employee union dominance of California politics suffered an important defeat last Tuesday. Voters in Santa Ana’s Ward 3 snubbed an attempt led by the powerful Santa Ana Police Officers Association to recall Councilmember Jessie Lopez, 56% to 44%. The union spent at least $660,000 and still lost. 

The election also cost taxpayers up to $666,990 to hold, according to the Orange County Registrar of voters. Especially considering Ms. Lopez is up for re-election next year, this was an absolute waste of taxpayer money.

The POA and its allies attempted to reframe the purpose of the recall as having to do with Lopez’s stances on issues like rent control. But that was just a cynical ploy to divert attention from the obvious reason for the recall. 

Fortunately, voters saw things as they really were. 

The recall was the final act of vindictiveness from former POA President Gerry Serrano, who was “separated from city service pending retirement pursuant to a confidential personnel matter.” 

The recall was purely revenge by Serrano against Lopez for daring to stand up to the POA accountable and for daring to order Serrano to do police work if he was going to remain on the city’s dole.

Related: Good riddance to Gerry Serrano

Serrano, who for years was paid by the city to be a full-time union boss, long leveraged his position for selfish ends. 

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