Saturday, November 15, 2008

Down to The Wire

With about 800 ballots left (mostly provisional), Diep Truong is 23 votes from winning the Westminster city council seat.

Is this a must win for Diep Truong? Not really, he is in his mid 20s and will have a long political career in front of him. Little Saigon Inside is picking him to win the election anyway.

Is this a must win for State Assemblyman Van Tran? Well, it would have bolstered his existing political image as a "Godfather" who is in control of the Vietnamese-American voters and politics in OC and beyond. So far none of the "Trannies" won in this election. Matter of fact, if Diep lost, the "Trannies" would have lost all of their election campaigns in 2008, a 0-8 record.

Van Tran is looking into his political crystal ball and right now it is cloudy but full of opportunities

His term ends in 2010 and he is looking at different options :

- Hang up his political career temporarily and get a judgeship appointment
- Run against Lou Correa for the state senate seat in 2010.
- Run against Loretta Sanchez. He already floated email to some of his strongest supporters soliciting money for this campaign. The idea to become the first Vietnamese-American serving in US Congress is very appealing.

His chance is strongest against Lou Correa. Lou has a favorable view by the Vietnamese-American community in OC but it is a matter of how much they dislike Van Tran. Tammy Tran, his district director, is a plus for Lou. However, can she bring him at least 40% of Vietnamese-American votes to offset the Republican substantial base in his district is a big question mark. She is politically untested and not savvy enough in the community. Her association with the controversial political organization Viet Tan (With the aim of overthrowing the Vietnamese government in Vietnam) is a turn-off for the community.

Van will not run against Loretta directly for he is very calculated and not a gambling politician. He will run for her seat if she decided to move on. Her option is limited also. Obama will appoint her sister before her for any lower level cabinet position. A US senate run in 2010 is not impossible but difficut. Governor Sanchez, may be but again, it would be difficult in 2010. On the other hand, any thing is possible in politics

County Supervisor Janet Nguyen of course is beaming with pride and satisfaction on her chief of staff's GG city council victory. It was a proxy battle between her and Van Tran. So far this year, Janet Nguyen 2, Van Tran 0.

When will they end this personal war between each others, nobody knows. But knowing Van and his ambition, Janet is the obstacle for his dream of stretching his political influence to all Vietnamese-Americans. So far, it has backfire as it showed in 2008 elections.

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