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Wu: A few lessons from the 74th District primary race

June 09, 2012|By Jack Wu

Among the self-help and recovery groups, it is thought that if things are not going right in your life, you need to take responsibility for your actions and not blame others for your problems.

It's too easy to say it's so-and-so's fault that I'm unhappy or this person's fault that I lost that promotion. However, taking responsibility for one's actions isn't as easy as it sounds. It takes lots of work and self-awareness, but it can be done.

I have thought about this during this year's primary election season.

First, in the 74th Assembly District, there are candidate and Newport Beach City Councilwoman Leslie Daigle's interactions with Costa Mesa blogger Geoff West, who publishes A Bubbling Cauldron, where she blamed her questionable performance at the Feet to the Fire Forum on everyone but herself.

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Fellow Councilman Rush Hill was quoted in a recent Daily Pilot article blaming Daigle's opponent, Democrat Bob Rush, saying, "I think he was a spoiler."

He then blamed the press, saying, "Everyone came out against her in the media," and that the media coverage was unfair ("Mansoor, Rush likely to advance," June 7).

So it's the media and Rush's fault that Daigle garnered 23% of the vote, while Rush got 33% and Assemblyman Allan Mansoor (R-Costa Mesa) received 43%? (Disclosure: I consider both men friends)

So it's the media's fault that, as written in the above Pilot article, that "Daigle could have harmed her own chances with poor debate performances and minimal interaction with the media — at one point she stopped taking calls from most reporters and declined a second debate invitation."

The result was a generally unflattering portrayal by columnists in the Orange County Register, Daily Pilot, Newport Beach Independent and other news outlets and blogs?

And of course, it has to be someone else's fault that Daigle chose not to attend the Laguna Beach League of Women Voter's forum ("Mansoor, Rush debate issues," May 27).

In the post-election aftermath, Daigle was quoted in the Orange County Register as saying Orange County Republican Party Chairman Scott Baugh and its endorsement of Mansoor may have been a factor in Charles Munger Jr.'s decision to make such a large donation, but then she graciously accepted defeat.

"Although I am disappointed," she said, "I am proud of the way my campaign was run and grateful for my supporters. It was a positive learning experience for me and everyone."

The 20% gap between Mansoor and Daigle's votes reminded us of a few things.

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