A Defacto Influence


At the unfurling of Little Saigon banners last week, political pundits could see the who's who running for the election on November 4 and beyond.

There was the usual presence of Sunnyvale Councilmember Otto Lee and San Jose City Vice Mayor Dave Cortese. Of course they both are vying votes for the county supervisor race in District 3. Supervisor Pete McHugh was there with the announcement he is running for Milpitas city council. District 8 city council candidate Pat Waite was given a commendation by the Little Saigon Foundation for his monetary contribution and support of the Little Saigon cause. His opponent, Rose Herrera, wearing her Vietnamese traditional dress " Ao dai", was also given center stage. District 2 supervisor candidate Richard Hobbs was on hand to make sure that the people know his strong support of the Vietnamese-American community. His opponent George Shirakawa decided to take the stand against the community with Madison Nguyen. Milpitas Mayor Jose Esteve also made his usual appearance.

Mayor Chuck Reed sent out email to the foundation a week in advance and informed of his presence. Last minute phone call to Reed by his young Vietnamese-American aide, Khoa Nguyen, to warn him that the area was surrounded by recall banners and tables caused a change of heart. The story as told by Khoa Nguyen to the media was that Reed was halfway to the event and then he changed his mind because he did not want to be seen with the recall crowd.

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