Best Republican Marionette
Published: July 30, 2014
Orange County Commissioner Fred Brummer
Over the past eight years, most of Commissioner Fred Brummer’s grumbled musings have been easily dismissed as noxious exhaust from a grumpy old man. In 2014, though, sensing his final chance at relevance, Brummer – via local Republican operatives – lashed out in very specific terms at an imagined liberal conspiracy in the county. Initially, Brummer brought out a Christmas list of changes he would like to make to the county charter, including the elimination of the tax collector’s office, punitive revisions to the petitioning process for citizens initiatives, the creation of two new “Hispanic” districts and a caveat that would make all county offices nonpartisan, among other bits of anger-making. Worse still, he wanted to rush the matter to a special election at taxpayer expense. Brummer’s scripted power grab would go on to be watered down (again by local Republican operatives), though what ends up on the ballot will likely still be unlikable.