A prominent local politician has abandoned the Orange County Board of Supervisors’ (OCBS) race, leaving five candidates in the running for the vacant District 2 seat.
Huntington Beach City Councilman Michael Posey said he was planning to run, but decided not to file after acknowledging that the polling data reflected a less-than-favorable outcome.
“I chose to get out because my polling data doesn’t support a pathway to victory,” Posey told The Epoch Times.
The OCBS supervisor position became available when former District 2 Supervisor Michelle Steel was sworn into U.S. Congress Jan. 3.
Candidates vying to replace her include former State Sen. John Moorlach, Fountain Valley Mayor Michael Vo, Newport Beach mayor pro tem Kevin Muldoon, Costa Mesa Mayor Katrina Foley, and Corona del Mar attorney Janet Rappaport.
With three of the candidates being Republican—Moorlach, Vo, and Muldoon—party leaders have expressed concern over the party being split.
Moorlach has been endorsed by the Orange County Republican Party and has significant name recognition due to more than 25 years of political experience.
“If Republicans unite behind the one candidate that can beat Katrina Foley, we will win,” the OC GOP said in a statement. “If Republicans follow the egos of politicians, we risk losing. We need all Republicans to come together.”
The Orange County Democratic Party endorses Foley.
“Costa Mesa Mayor Katrina Foley is a recognized champion for our health and safety,” party chairwoman Ada Briceño said in a press release when making the endorsement. “When the pandemic hit, Mayor Foley collaborated with every level of government to find immediate solutions for businesses, workers, and residents. In addition to hosting public town halls to keep us informed, she is committed to strong economic recovery that includes everyone.
“She is the best possible person for this job—period.”
Although both parties have endorsed candidates, the OCBS is nonpartisan.
Each OCBS district has nearly 400,000 registered voters.
Nearly 130,000 votes were cast in the 2018 election for the second supervisorial seat.
Vote by mail begins on Feb. 8, and voting centers open Feb. 27.