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Alvarez Apologizes, Kind of….

Santa Ana Mayor Pro Tem Claudia Alvarez apologized last night for her poor choice of words in linking Santa Ana developers Irv and Ryan Chase to Nazi leader Adolpf Hitler and inappropriately using the term “ethnic cleansing.”

The statements first appeared on Art Pedroza’s New Santa Ana blog and came in shortly before 11PM.  Pedroza initially wrote that Alvarez made the statement in a press conference, which surprised Voice of OC reporter Adam Elmahrek who joined several of us from the LiberalOC at Memphis for “Drinking Liberally.”  Pedroza’s post was later changed to attribute the apology to an LA Times story that was posted at 11:24 PM last night a good half hour after his initial post (more on that in a second). OC Register Santa Ana reporter Andrew Galvan was also unaware of of any “press conference.”

In the Times story, Alvarez’s apology was more of a media announcement than one directed at the Chase’s who were informed of the apology by the LA Times reporter.  From the story: “What I said was inappropriate, and I let my emotions get the best of me,” Mayor Pro Tem Claudia Alvarez said by telephone. Alvarez said getting emotional did not justify her statements. She said the debate has affected her personally because her father owned a business downtown, and the incident is the culmination of escalating tensions surrounding the downtown area. “The conversation is not over,” she said. “I obviously need to learn how to keep my cool.”

It’s hard to portray this as a conversation when public comments are limited to three minutes a speaker and Alvarez’s rant was easily 15 minutes long at Wednesday night’s council meeting. It isn’t clear if Alvarez has personally outreached to the Chase’s to apologize by telephone or by letter.  Again, they had no comment when informed of the apology by the newspaper.

What isn’t clear is if Alvarez carried a bias about downtown business due to her father’s previous business interest downtown, should she have recused herself from the vote taken Wednesday night?

Back to Pedroza’s post for a moment.  There was no press conference as he initially reported and the post carried scant information about the apology itself.  Two thirds of Pedroza’s post is a rambling non-sequiter of attacks against those who criticized Alavrez, many of which happen to be political opponents of Pedroza himself. So while Pedroza claims support for Downtown, Inc., the enemy of my enemy is my friend motif comes into play.  Pedroza previously ran cover for Alavarez went she stated that 9/11 was a “horrible accident” citing her difficulty with the English language from her native Spanish tongue. 

Perhaps Art can do us a favor when he writes about Council member David Benevides’ honoring a group of citizens for the 2010 July 4th celebration; a group which included the misguided Lupe Moreno who once signed a candidacy petition for Thomas Gordon that Art should remind his readers that in 2006, he ran Moreno’s state senate campign against Lou Corera.

And since Pedroza is going to play the “Alvarez apologies, look over there, oooh shiny” defense, let’s make it clear– the first place news of the apology broke was on a blog run by a financially and morally bankrupt individual who once used web sites he owned to promote pedastry and gay porn in an attempt to blackmail his political enemies.  The apology broke on a website that ran positive news stories about Santa Ana city council candidates without ethically disclosing the blog owner was being paid by said city council candidates for “web services.”   Alvarez clearly chose to break the news to Pedroza, knowing he’d carry water for her. And since Pedroza is more intent on smearing those who criticize Alvarez for her anti-Semetic remarks (and they were anti-Semetic) than taking her to task for it, then perhaps it’s useful to remind readers of the character of the person Alvarez chose to break the news.

 We have a number of calls in to DPOC party leaders to gauge their reaction. 



  1. Jeff Gallagher Jeff Gallagher August 26, 2011

    Wait. Let’s get this straight. You guys drank Liberally without me? What, you’re embarrassed to be seen with a Libertarian?

    As you’ve pointed out time and again, Alvarez has no business being on the Santa Ana city council and should resign after her asinine remarks. Yes, my wife is Jewish and she remains offended by this woman’s thoughtless remarks.

    Pedroza is,… well, Pedroza. Why bother writing about a nonsequiter?

    • Dan Chmielewski Dan Chmielewski August 26, 2011

      every Thursday night; Libertarians welcome

  2. Al Simmons Al Simmons August 26, 2011

    Alvarez had the perfect opportunity to recant or apologize immediately after the meeting when she spoke to legitimate members of the local press (obviously, Pedroza was not there).

    At that time, not only did she NOT apologize, but she confirmed her statements, according to Adam Ehlemark over at the Voice of OC:
    “Alvarez stood by her remarks after the meeting, saying that ethnic cleansing was exactly what the Chases were doing.”
    “She went on to say that Irving Chase uses his Jewish identity as a defense against the ethnic cleansing allegation, which has been made by Latinos in downtown to describe what they see as gentrification.”

    An 11th hour apology using Pedroza as her mouthpiece, especially after she went out of her way to confirm those attacks, is no apology at all. It’s simply an attempted act of political damage control, just saying whatever must be said to try and make this go away.

    Let’s hope the city revokes her mayor pro tem status and sanctions her appropriately, and that the Chases seek appropriate civil remedies.
    It’s up to the rest of the voting public to make sure that that someone who could say such horrible things (and really mean them) NEVER gets elected to public office again.

  3. Get a clue Get a clue August 27, 2011

    Can someone explain to me what Vince Sarmiento meant when asked about Alvarez’s removal “I want to wait and see, we don’t want to unravel the will of the people”
    Really……really What a worthless, spineless, waste of human skin that goes for Fat Sal Tinejero and Michelle Snookie Martinez

    • cook cook August 28, 2011

      offer a link to that comment please.

      Unless a emergency meeting is called of the council, They should not be discussing this amongst themselves. correct?

  4. Thomas Anthony Gordon Thomas Anthony Gordon August 28, 2011

    Councilman Vince Sarmiento said he also wanted to wait, saying that taking action could be dangerous because “it unwinds the will of the people.”
    “I’m also very glad to know that Claudia did do the right thing and make a public apology and retract public comments she made,” Sarmiento said. “I think that’s a good first step.”

    What about the will of the voters who barely passed Measure D and it’s Code of Ethics that states that elected officials will treat people with respect and civility even when all parties disagree on what is best for the community?

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