Election 2016: What a difference an evening can make in a country--and in a state.
This Election Day was something unheard of. Pundits, pollsters, politicians, the political elite by and large were astounded.
Well-known, well-respected conservatives could not believe that Donald Trump would win the Presidency. Of course, men and women who understand the working people of our country, who recognize that the rule of law, secure borders, a thriving open economy, and fair deals in all trade still matter--they caught on much more quickly than most.
The turnout was larger than expected, especially among Republicans. Donald Trump took the Rust Belt, taking into his winning train Wisconsin, Michigan, and Pennsylvania, along with Ohio and Indiana.
The networks dragged their feet, as expected, and changed the standards for calling an election.
There was singing, laughing, rejoicing in large and welcome measure.
For California voters in the South Bay, however, the national victory contained a sad undertone.
Our own Assemblyman, David Hadley, did not win re-election.
David Hadley bested some of the most trying odds in 2013.
I understand his frustration and desperate wonder: "If this does not work, I am not sure what else can be done."
Fortunately, I do not share a sense of bleak pessimism about California, but there is no way that anyone could assess the situation without recognizing everything that Hadley did for the South Bay--and for California.
He had served as chairman/President of the Beach Cities Republicans for three years. He took over when the previous leader bailed on his responsibilities because he had not won the nomination--let alone the election--for Congress against Jane Harman in 2010.
He took over, and made something of the Beach Cities Republicans, creating a club that would impact the South Bay and make people think and vote conservative.
He was a monthly featured writer and speaker, The region sought his view on a number of issues. He gave his strict opinions on the political ups and downs in California, where overwhelming elections and underwhelming media coverage hurt civic participation.
He called the corrupting influence of the Big Green agenda in public education.
He championed every candidate who ran for office.
I remember how hard he worked in 2011 for Craig Huey during the 2011 special election to replace Jane Harman, and again his constant efforts to assist Craig's chances in 2012 for the state assembly.
Then he really got busy planning the next phase.
The South Bay 100 would serve as an endorsement body and fundraising arm to help the next Republican candidate who ran for Assembly District 66. I liked the idea, and so did the rest of the Central Committee he served on.
Hadley worked his tail off. He sought locally elected officials, popular and well-connected, to run.
Frank Scott was the termed-out mayor of Torrance. He passed.
Paul Tanaka the mayor of Gardena was the next person, but he turned down the chance, since he was running for LA County Sheriff.
A few other elected officials were worth considering, and all of them passed.
Then I got the phone call in August. Hadley announced to me that he was going to run.
I did not believe it, and I did not welcome the announcement at first. I must admit, I contacted a local official that I thought would be interested in turn. He turned it down, citing overwhelming commitments of a different nature.
I was unhappy, and I even felt snubbed by David. I left him alone for a few months and had nothing to say.
Then October 2014 rolled around, and I realized the scope of all that he was accomplishing. He had created a unifying political force, he had removed unnecessary obstacles to a unified win. He worked, worked worked, I out the pieces together, he congratulated me on what I had--finally--figured out.
AND HE WON!
It was a real boost for the South Bay GOP.
Evan Chase, BCR President at the time, was especially thrilled because at the core he wanted to see us South Bay Republicans win elections again.
And GOP operatives started winning more races. Torrance City Council is majority Republican. Palos Verdes is all GOP now!
Hawthorne has a Republican mayor and city councilman.
Lawndale, too, and El Segundo is looking strong.
Republicans are winning again!
David Hadley left nothing to chance as an Assemblyman.
He got a school choice bill passed in the state of California. Does anyone not understand the full import of this accomplishment?! The media paid attention to Hadley, and documented these incredible victories.
He voted against every single tax increases. Every one. Not many Republicans in Sacramento can make the same boast ...
He voted against SB 1146, a bill designed to bully and ultimately shut down Christian colleges in the state of California.
. He fought for our liberties, and he crowned this achievement with civil asset forfeiture reform, in spite of freuent obstacles.
No, I did not agree with him on everything. I must admit that at one time I was so forlorn I was going to uit serving on the BCR Board.
But instead of complaining, I spoke out, and he listened. He answered every email I sent, and even challenged the Torrance City Council when Mayor Pat Furey was caught colluding with a PAC--a clear violation of campaign finance laws.
This is the kind of legislator we need in Sacramento. May his time increase.
Assemblyman David Hadley, I will write this fully and without reserve ...
Election 2016 loss is not your fault.
Your method for counter-balancing the public sector unions was a strong attempt, but at this point, we need a forceful intervention to stop these abusive labor unions from stealing our taxpayer dollars to spend on candidates and causes contrary to the individual and the public best interest.
This loss is a mere bump in the road. A Trump Presidency will ensure a culture shaped to constitutional rule, with limited government and individual liberty held in high esteem once again.
Thank you for your service, Assemblyman.
Check out his interview on KTLA Five news here: