Albert Muratsuchi, state prosecutor and school board member, jumped into the 66th Assembly at just the right time.
He had money from all over the state (most outside of the district), and the national election improved his chances, too. Despite his small registration advantage ( 36% Dem, 33% GOP), Muratsuchi and his special interest hordes relentlessly, immorally, and falsely attacked the Republican challenger.
The lies were so bad, Huey filed a lawsuit against Muratsuchi. Despite the best efforts, and extensively volunteering, Huey did not carry the seat.
From the moment the former prosecutor and school board member unloaded on conservative Republican Craig Huey in 2012, I wanted to see him tank.
In 2014, tank he did.
As soon as he announced his intentions of the 66th Congressional district in 20120, Al Muratsuchi got into a mess he was never prepared for.
The Citizens Redistricting Commission did an adequate job of evening out the seats, and removing the partisan gerrymandering which had marginalized South Bay voters for decades. The seat leaned slightly Democratic based on registration, but with the right ground game, a Republican had a strong opportunity of taking the seat.
Still, from the first week of January, two Republicans were ready to fight for the seat, and Muratsuchi could take advantage of the divide and conquer.
Representing a fiscally conservative seat in a Democratic Party which has been coopted by the left, the school board trustee had not reason to trust that his ride would be an easy one.
What was Muratsuchi thinking?
I am glad to see him gone.
One has to wonder - what was the Democratic Party thinking in vetting his guy to run for state Assembly in 2012?
They judged Muratsuchi by the color of his skin, not the content of his character, pure and simple. The California Democratic Party has referred to the South Bay as "The Asian Seat" for years. Now, we can remind them that this seat, like every other, belongs to the voters, and seeks representatives who take their oath of office seriously.
For a man who claimed to uphold the Constitution, he spent an excessive amount of time denigrating people who care about this nation's founding document. He also spent a great deal of his campaigning and legislative work ignoring the charter, too.
Muratsuchi supported drivers licenses for illegal immigrants. He voted to allow boys to go into girls' bathrooms in public schools, and vice versa. He helped cut key funding to local schools, as well. He claimed to promote aerospace investments, then turns around and votes with the tax-and-spendthrift state legislature which pushed away strong businesses like Toyota, Charles Schwab, and Tesla.
This man was pro-Sacramento, not pro-business. This man was a union puppet, not a man of the people.
With the anti-incumbent, and anti-Democratic sentiment in the 2014 election air, no wonder Muratsuchi tried to bail on this seat and run for state senate seat vacated by Ted Lieu. Democratic Party leaders pushed him back into his seat, and dumped millions of dollars on his race. He tried to paint his new Republican challenger David Hadley as a Tea Party extremist, anti-woman, anti-working man, and anti-ethics. The last mailer from the Muratsuchi camp claimed that Hadley belonged in a jail cell, not the state assembly.
For all the liberal pretenses, despite volunteers and big donations from suspect influences, Muratsuchi still lost. For all the talk about the corrosive influence of money in politics, the 66th Assembly race in Election 2014 proves once again that no politician can buy a seat outright.
Muratsuchi lined up purported support from Republicans, Democrats, and Independents. Yet flashy fliers and big name endorsements do not an election win create. Voters are worried about their future, the economy, the opportunities for their kids. Local schools are still suffering brutal neglect and financial mismanagement from Sacramento, and public sector unions are still calling too many of the legislative shots on both sides of the aisle.
Muratsuchi the poster boy for upstart liberalism tried to play the game, and lost. He had 2012 momentum, but by 2014, even liberals soured on the Obama brand, and Muratsuchi's chances soured with him.