Saturday, February 28, 2009

Latest Numbers on Absentee Ballots

For those who are keeping track of the recall election -

8851 absentee ballots so far were received by the Santa Clara County Registrar Office. The people from both Nguyen's camp and the Recall Team indicated that a little bit more than 50% are from Vietnamese American voters and the rest are split between Hispanics, Whites and other Asians. Vietnamese Americans compose about 28% of the population in District 7.

Nguyen's camp is worried because the Vietnamese-American voters will tend not to favor her. Their large turn-out as expected is not what she wanted.

Some of the Hispanic voters who already voted are motivated against her since there is no reason for them to keep her in office for what she had done against them on the GI Forum and not done for them on crime issues. But the more fundamental motive is why would they want Nguyen to be in office when they can have a Hispanic to replace her?

The White voters are motivated against the community, and if you believe the hundred of hatred comments written on the Mercury News, mostly because of racism driven by media and elected officials. Elected officials like Larry Stone are calling the community "bullies and thugs". Sam Liccardo is telling people publicly how disrespectful the community is at him. Strange comment for somebody who is trying so hard to play both sides of the fence. The Merc also has called out the community as extremist and bully. It is strange behavior for public officials and media to incite hatred in a population made up of 1/3 Whites, 1/3 Asians and 1/3 Hispanics. Why would an Asian community has the right to exercise their political rights? Who do they think they are is the message.

Nguyen so far has outspent her opponent almost 3 to 1. She has the most influential public officials supporting her - Mayor Chuck Reed and South Bay Labor Union's Cindy Chavez. Unions are putting in massive money and ten of thousands of volunteer hours to ensure her victory.

She also has most of the media behind her - Mercury News and powerful weathly Vietnamese-Americans who owns influential media like Que Huong Radio and Vien Thao Media.

But at the end of the day, people will judge her on her ethics which has to be the highest for elected officials. Mayor Reed and the Labor Union's leadership (through their San Jose Revealed blog) already predicted confidently that she will win.

There are about 2,000 votes left in this race. Half of it will be Vietnamese-Americans if the trends hold true. Nguyen with all her advantages as an elected official with powerful allies and unlimited resources is in trouble despite conventional wisdom that she would crush the recall movement. Labor's own external poll shows a 20% spread two weeks ago.

David and Goliath is a favorite story of American's political history. Could a group of mostly healthcare professionals, engineers and computer scientists relying solely on grassroot movement to topple a political system of back door dealing that favor the rich, wealthy and the powerful?

The answer is already written by Nguyen's erratic behavior this week by having her strongest ally- the powerful Vien Thao media publicly threatened the Vietnamese-American voters by playing the last two days a prerecored tape of their talk show of a caller identified herself as Santa Clara County official. Nga Nguyen in a hostile tone told the voters that if they voted against Nguyen, they would lose their social assistance benefits.

Footnote: Around 1:00 PM today, a San Jose fire truck with a no recall sign sped by the Recall Team headquarters and started honking their horn loudly. One of the firemen sitting on the passenger side stuck his head out yelling obscenity and gave the finger. It is illegal for public servant (i.e., firemen and policemen) to be a part of a political campaign. Another example of the abuse of power by Nguyen and Reed.

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