4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs

Re-drawing lines may delete Orange County from 49th Congressional District

Mike Levin says he'd move to San Diego County

Brian Maryott Congressional campaign headquartered in same Oceanside complex as Chris Rodriguez mayoral campaign.
Brian Maryott Congressional campaign headquartered in same Oceanside complex as Chris Rodriguez mayoral campaign.

“The Republican party asked me to run against [Congressman] Mike Levin in 2020.” That’s what Oceanside city councilman Christopher Rodriguez said two years ago when the Latino ex-Marine who served in Iraq was viewed as a GOP up-and-comer.

“I turned them down,” says Rodriguez about his party’s request for him to represent the GOP in Congress. “I just felt I had too much to do for the city of Oceanside.”

Rodriguez could win a kind of electoral lottery this September.

So Rodriguez instead ran for mayor of Oceanside. He was trounced in November by fellow councilmember Esther Sanchez who topped him with an 11 percent spread. Rodriguez retains his city council seat.

Rodriguez, a father of seven and a real estate agent who bills himself as a farmer, has just decided to run to unseat Levin in the 49th Congressional District which includes South Orange County and North San Diego County. But he now does so without the blessing of the GOP machinery. High-profile elected Republicans are supporting former San Juan Capistrano mayor Brian Maryott to take out Levin. Longtime Carlsbad mayor Matt Hall as well as his colleagues on the Oceanside city council (Peter Weiss and Ryan Keim) both want Maryott over Rodriguez.

Maryott lost to Levin by six percentage points in the 2020 general election. Yet Maryott would seem to have greater name recognition in the 49th congressional district than Rodriguez. Maryott won 181,157 votes for Congress, more than 11 times the votes Rodriguez got for his mayoral quest in that same November election. And Maryott would seem to have a native son advantage in the Orange County cities in Congressional District 49, which include San Clemente, Dana Point, and San Juan Capistrano.

But Rodriguez could win a kind of electoral lottery this September, some nine months before the June 2022 primary: Incumbent Mike Levin and challenger Brian Maryott could find themselves cut out of the congressional district they want to represent.

The California Citizens Redistricting Commission meets once every ten years to redraw the state's assembly, state senate, and congressional districts. California’s lagging population growth caused the state to lose one of its 53 seats. In September the commission will start working on the boundaries of the new 52 congressional districts.

Brian Maryott: Will the GOP favorite be painted as an Orange County interloper?

About two-thirds of the voters in the current CD-49 live in the North County cities of Oceanside, Carlsbad, Encinitas, and Vista. The other third who vote in Orange County are separated from their southern district mates by 125,000 acres of Camp Pendleton, the world's largest Marine Corps base.

Is it possible the newly created 49th congressional seat would focus on just North County and move the Orange County cities in with other cities in their own county?

From 2002 to 2012 CD-49 was a North County-based district with no Orange County voters at all. That district was more horizontal than its current vertical configuration. The 49th from ten years ago included Fallbrook, Valley Center, Julian, and some cities in southwest Riverside County.

If CD-49 loses its Orange County cities again, San Clemente-based Mike Levin and San Juan Capistrano’s Brian Maryott would be squeezed out of their own district. Both Levin and Maryott could still run in the new district since residency is not required to serve in the House of Representatives. In fact Darrell Issa survived carpetbagger charges when he was elected to the 50th congressional district last year even though he was not a resident of the 50th.

A North County-only CD-49 may help Levin.

If such a realignment were to occur, it would seem to give Rodriguez a boost, since he could say he is the only true major candidate on the ballot, not an interloper from Orange County. Rodriguez could claim that North San Diego County people have an entirely different lifestyle than those who live on the other side of the Orange Curtain, and that Vista, for instance, has nothing in common with San Juan Capistrano.

But how realistic is it that the redistricting commission would in fact try to keep CD-49 mostly a North County sector as it was 10 years ago?

Fredy Ceja is the spokesman for the California Citizens Redistricting Commission. He said by phone that honoring county lines is “super important” to the commission as it sets out to redraw the statewide map. The commission must make sure that all 52 new districts have the same population. He says it must seek to “minimize divisions of counties, cities, neighborhoods, and communities of interest.”

In fact, Ceja welcomes all statewide voters to weigh in with their input by contacting the commission directly at www.wedrawthelinesca.org. He says that if North County residents want their own district again, free of Orange County influence, they need only to let the commission know. “They can even send in their own map,” says Ceja. He says the commission wants to hear all points of view. He says the commission is composed of five Republicans, five Democrats and four independents.

Rodriguez could conceivably get his followers to weigh in on the commission's website with a locals-only, North County-focused campaign. “Redistricting will impact campaigns across the state on both sides,” Rodriguez says by email. “I’m ready for every scenario.”

But what then would incumbent Levin and challenger Maryott do? Levin’s spokesperson Eric Mee said by phone that should the new district exclude Orange County, Congressman Levin would move to North County.

Maryott’s campaign did not respond.

A North County-only CD-49 may help Levin since voters from Orange County skewed more heavily Republican than voters from North San Diego County in recent elections. Levin flipped CD-49 in 2018. Republican Darrell Issa was North County’s congressman from 2000 through 2018.

Meanwhile the Maryott for Congress campaign has set up its North County headquarters in the same downtown Oceanside complex that housed the Rodriguez for Mayor headquarters last year. That glassed storefront on the 400 block of North Coast Highway is just northwest of the Oceanside city hall complex. Its Florida-based landlord Elliot LaBreche says the decision to rent to the Maryott campaign should not be interpreted as a preference of Maryott over Rodriguez. “I like them both,” he says. “They are both quality people.” He says the Maryott campaign is leasing the space at "full market value."

A separate commission is deciding how the five county supervisor districts will be reconfigured. A Democratic candidate to challenge 5th District supervisor Republican Jim Desmond has not yet been identified. Oceanside mayor Esther Sanchez says she has no plans to run. "I want to keep focusing on making Oceanside a better place.” Carlsbad Councilwoman Cori Schumacher, who was expected to announce, is dealing with a threatened recall. Desmond’s 2018 Democratic challenger was Michelle Gomez. Gomez recently filed for bankruptcy seeking protection from creditors who worked on that 2018 campaign and who claimed they were not paid.

Retired USMC Colonel Doug Applegate ran against Darryl Issa in Issa’s final run for CD-49 in 2016. Issa’s poor showing (he beat Applegate with only 0.6 percent of the vote) was thought to have contributed to Issa’s decision to not run for re-election in 2018. Applegate says he would not be running again for Congress. “I am disinclined to do another tour in D.C.,” referring to his military service. Applegate did not rule in or rule out a run against Desmond.

Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all

Previous article

Superbloom lays claim to best café location in the city

On a patio overlooking Mission Bay, even boring mochas taste good
Brian Maryott Congressional campaign headquartered in same Oceanside complex as Chris Rodriguez mayoral campaign.
Brian Maryott Congressional campaign headquartered in same Oceanside complex as Chris Rodriguez mayoral campaign.

“The Republican party asked me to run against [Congressman] Mike Levin in 2020.” That’s what Oceanside city councilman Christopher Rodriguez said two years ago when the Latino ex-Marine who served in Iraq was viewed as a GOP up-and-comer.

“I turned them down,” says Rodriguez about his party’s request for him to represent the GOP in Congress. “I just felt I had too much to do for the city of Oceanside.”

Rodriguez could win a kind of electoral lottery this September.

So Rodriguez instead ran for mayor of Oceanside. He was trounced in November by fellow councilmember Esther Sanchez who topped him with an 11 percent spread. Rodriguez retains his city council seat.

Rodriguez, a father of seven and a real estate agent who bills himself as a farmer, has just decided to run to unseat Levin in the 49th Congressional District which includes South Orange County and North San Diego County. But he now does so without the blessing of the GOP machinery. High-profile elected Republicans are supporting former San Juan Capistrano mayor Brian Maryott to take out Levin. Longtime Carlsbad mayor Matt Hall as well as his colleagues on the Oceanside city council (Peter Weiss and Ryan Keim) both want Maryott over Rodriguez.

Maryott lost to Levin by six percentage points in the 2020 general election. Yet Maryott would seem to have greater name recognition in the 49th congressional district than Rodriguez. Maryott won 181,157 votes for Congress, more than 11 times the votes Rodriguez got for his mayoral quest in that same November election. And Maryott would seem to have a native son advantage in the Orange County cities in Congressional District 49, which include San Clemente, Dana Point, and San Juan Capistrano.

But Rodriguez could win a kind of electoral lottery this September, some nine months before the June 2022 primary: Incumbent Mike Levin and challenger Brian Maryott could find themselves cut out of the congressional district they want to represent.

The California Citizens Redistricting Commission meets once every ten years to redraw the state's assembly, state senate, and congressional districts. California’s lagging population growth caused the state to lose one of its 53 seats. In September the commission will start working on the boundaries of the new 52 congressional districts.

Brian Maryott: Will the GOP favorite be painted as an Orange County interloper?

About two-thirds of the voters in the current CD-49 live in the North County cities of Oceanside, Carlsbad, Encinitas, and Vista. The other third who vote in Orange County are separated from their southern district mates by 125,000 acres of Camp Pendleton, the world's largest Marine Corps base.

Is it possible the newly created 49th congressional seat would focus on just North County and move the Orange County cities in with other cities in their own county?

From 2002 to 2012 CD-49 was a North County-based district with no Orange County voters at all. That district was more horizontal than its current vertical configuration. The 49th from ten years ago included Fallbrook, Valley Center, Julian, and some cities in southwest Riverside County.

If CD-49 loses its Orange County cities again, San Clemente-based Mike Levin and San Juan Capistrano’s Brian Maryott would be squeezed out of their own district. Both Levin and Maryott could still run in the new district since residency is not required to serve in the House of Representatives. In fact Darrell Issa survived carpetbagger charges when he was elected to the 50th congressional district last year even though he was not a resident of the 50th.

A North County-only CD-49 may help Levin.

If such a realignment were to occur, it would seem to give Rodriguez a boost, since he could say he is the only true major candidate on the ballot, not an interloper from Orange County. Rodriguez could claim that North San Diego County people have an entirely different lifestyle than those who live on the other side of the Orange Curtain, and that Vista, for instance, has nothing in common with San Juan Capistrano.

But how realistic is it that the redistricting commission would in fact try to keep CD-49 mostly a North County sector as it was 10 years ago?

Fredy Ceja is the spokesman for the California Citizens Redistricting Commission. He said by phone that honoring county lines is “super important” to the commission as it sets out to redraw the statewide map. The commission must make sure that all 52 new districts have the same population. He says it must seek to “minimize divisions of counties, cities, neighborhoods, and communities of interest.”

In fact, Ceja welcomes all statewide voters to weigh in with their input by contacting the commission directly at www.wedrawthelinesca.org. He says that if North County residents want their own district again, free of Orange County influence, they need only to let the commission know. “They can even send in their own map,” says Ceja. He says the commission wants to hear all points of view. He says the commission is composed of five Republicans, five Democrats and four independents.

Rodriguez could conceivably get his followers to weigh in on the commission's website with a locals-only, North County-focused campaign. “Redistricting will impact campaigns across the state on both sides,” Rodriguez says by email. “I’m ready for every scenario.”

But what then would incumbent Levin and challenger Maryott do? Levin’s spokesperson Eric Mee said by phone that should the new district exclude Orange County, Congressman Levin would move to North County.

Maryott’s campaign did not respond.

A North County-only CD-49 may help Levin since voters from Orange County skewed more heavily Republican than voters from North San Diego County in recent elections. Levin flipped CD-49 in 2018. Republican Darrell Issa was North County’s congressman from 2000 through 2018.

Meanwhile the Maryott for Congress campaign has set up its North County headquarters in the same downtown Oceanside complex that housed the Rodriguez for Mayor headquarters last year. That glassed storefront on the 400 block of North Coast Highway is just northwest of the Oceanside city hall complex. Its Florida-based landlord Elliot LaBreche says the decision to rent to the Maryott campaign should not be interpreted as a preference of Maryott over Rodriguez. “I like them both,” he says. “They are both quality people.” He says the Maryott campaign is leasing the space at "full market value."

A separate commission is deciding how the five county supervisor districts will be reconfigured. A Democratic candidate to challenge 5th District supervisor Republican Jim Desmond has not yet been identified. Oceanside mayor Esther Sanchez says she has no plans to run. "I want to keep focusing on making Oceanside a better place.” Carlsbad Councilwoman Cori Schumacher, who was expected to announce, is dealing with a threatened recall. Desmond’s 2018 Democratic challenger was Michelle Gomez. Gomez recently filed for bankruptcy seeking protection from creditors who worked on that 2018 campaign and who claimed they were not paid.

Retired USMC Colonel Doug Applegate ran against Darryl Issa in Issa’s final run for CD-49 in 2016. Issa’s poor showing (he beat Applegate with only 0.6 percent of the vote) was thought to have contributed to Issa’s decision to not run for re-election in 2018. Applegate says he would not be running again for Congress. “I am disinclined to do another tour in D.C.,” referring to his military service. Applegate did not rule in or rule out a run against Desmond.

Sponsored
Here's something you might be interested in.
Submit a free classified
or view all
Previous article

Luis Urrea daydreams of San Diego, Oklahoma girl spends summers on Bonair Street

We buy a $120,000 hoiuse in El Cerrito, an incurable eavesdropper, lives of a beautiful girl and a fat boy in San Diego
Next Article

Picking the perfect white elephant gift

Revisit the art of humorous gift giving
Comments
0

Be the first to leave a comment.

Sign in to comment

Sign in

Ask a Hipster — Advice you didn't know you needed Big Screen — Movie commentary Blurt — Music's inside track Booze News — San Diego spirits Classical Music — Immortal beauty Classifieds — Free and easy Cover Stories — Front-page features Drinks All Around — Bartenders' drink recipes Excerpts — Literary and spiritual excerpts Feast! — Food & drink reviews Feature Stories — Local news & stories Fishing Report — What’s getting hooked from ship and shore From the Archives — Spotlight on the past Golden Dreams — Talk of the town Letters — Our inbox [email protected] — Local movie buffs share favorites Movie Reviews — Our critics' picks and pans Musician Interviews — Up close with local artists Neighborhood News from Stringers — Hyperlocal news News Ticker — News & politics Obermeyer — San Diego politics illustrated Outdoors — Weekly changes in flora and fauna Overheard in San Diego — Eavesdropping illustrated Poetry — The old and the new Reader Travel — Travel section built by travelers Reading — The hunt for intellectuals Roam-O-Rama — SoCal's best hiking/biking trails San Diego Beer — Inside San Diego suds SD on the QT — Almost factual news Sheep and Goats — Places of worship Special Issues — The best of Street Style — San Diego streets have style Surf Diego — Real stories from those braving the waves Tin Fork — Silver spoon alternative Under the Radar — Matt Potter's undercover work Unforgettable — Long-ago San Diego Unreal Estate — San Diego's priciest pads Your Week — Daily event picks
4S Ranch Allied Gardens Alpine Baja Balboa Park Bankers Hill Barrio Logan Bay Ho Bay Park Black Mountain Ranch Blossom Valley Bonita Bonsall Borrego Springs Boulevard Campo Cardiff-by-the-Sea Carlsbad Carmel Mountain Carmel Valley Chollas View Chula Vista City College City Heights Clairemont College Area Coronado CSU San Marcos Cuyamaca College Del Cerro Del Mar Descanso Downtown San Diego Eastlake East Village El Cajon Emerald Hills Encanto Encinitas Escondido Fallbrook Fletcher Hills Golden Hill Grant Hill Grantville Grossmont College Guatay Harbor Island Hillcrest Imperial Beach Imperial Valley Jacumba Jamacha-Lomita Jamul Julian Kearny Mesa Kensington La Jolla Lakeside La Mesa Lemon Grove Leucadia Liberty Station Lincoln Acres Lincoln Park Linda Vista Little Italy Logan Heights Mesa College Midway District MiraCosta College Miramar Miramar College Mira Mesa Mission Beach Mission Hills Mission Valley Mountain View Mount Hope Mount Laguna National City Nestor Normal Heights North Park Oak Park Ocean Beach Oceanside Old Town Otay Mesa Pacific Beach Pala Palomar College Palomar Mountain Paradise Hills Pauma Valley Pine Valley Point Loma Point Loma Nazarene Potrero Poway Rainbow Ramona Rancho Bernardo Rancho Penasquitos Rancho San Diego Rancho Santa Fe Rolando San Carlos San Marcos San Onofre Santa Ysabel Santee San Ysidro Scripps Ranch SDSU Serra Mesa Shelltown Shelter Island Sherman Heights Skyline Solana Beach Sorrento Valley Southcrest South Park Southwestern College Spring Valley Stockton Talmadge Temecula Tierrasanta Tijuana UCSD University City University Heights USD Valencia Park Valley Center Vista Warner Springs
Close