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Opinion

Readers React: It’s irresponsible to vote for O.C. third-party candidates just to send a message to Democrats

Rep. Dana Rohrabacher speaks during a press conference at his home in Costa Mesa on Monday, April 23
Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Costa Mesa), considered a vulnerable Orange County incumbent, may end up facing no Democratic opposition in the November general election.
(Scott Smeltzer / Daily Pilot)

To the editor: Let me get this straight: Columnist Gustavo Arellano wants Orange County Democrats to “prove” something to him — it’s not quite clear what — in order for him to come home and stop “splitting” his vote among Libertarians, Greens and Peace and Freedom candidates.

He names two “tyrannical” office holders as the reason for voting for third parties, which in the American political system is tantamount to wasting a vote or, in the case of current Orange County congressional races, helping to keep Republicans in power.

I suppose Arellano imagines himself as a quirky independent-minded spirit. But politics is primarily about articulating values, getting elected and then exerting the power necessary to change laws, not about fulfilling the self. This is done through political parties that for most of our modern history have been composed of either Democrats or Republicans.

At this crucial time in our country, for Arellano to offer glib political advice centered on himself is irresponsible.

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Kelly Candaele, Los Angeles

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To the editor: Arellano is wrong: Demographics have changed in Orange County, and now is the time for the Republican stranglehold on power to end. That’s not to say it will be easy. It’s always hard to build something, especially from scratch.

The Republican Party has been entrenched in south Orange County for years because it was pretty much the only game in town. Well, now there are new players. It’s easy to criticize, especially when you’re a hammer and everything looks like a nail, but some of us are working hard to help make a difference. I’m taking action.

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Arellano should not be proud of his decision to split his ballot between third parties. Stop complaining and take a stand. It’s called politics.

Jo Anne Simon, Mission Viejo

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To the editor: If only we had more politicians like former Irvine Mayor Larry Agran, “whose ego,” to use Arellano’s words, stopped the Orange County Board of Supervisors from turning the former Marine Corps Air Station El Toro into a commercial airport.

The Orange County Great Park planned to take the base’s place may not be what was envisioned, but thank goodness there are no planes flying over my roof.

Gail Lewis, Irvine

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