Response To Cancellation of Costa Mesa United Forum
This afternoon, following the announcement by Gordon Bowley, President of Costa Mesa United, of their board's decision to cancel the candidate forum scheduled for next Thursday, September 20th, I received communication from three of the four remaining candidates that Bowley and his team apparently would suffer a disadvantage at their forum because Steve Mensinger and Colin McCarthy would potentially have the inside track.
WEITZBERG ASKS THEM TO RECONSIDER
Candidate Harold Weitzberg's campaign issued a press release to announce that Weitzberg had emailed Bowley requesting that they reconsider the cancellation of the forum. Here is part of his press release:
ALL THREE PREFER IT TO BE HELD
I subsequently had conversations with both Sandra Genis and John Stephens about the cancellation. Both were very disappointed because they each felt their knowledge and experience in the areas that the folks at Costa Mesa United planned to cover - academics, athletics and activities - was strong enough to hold their own with Mensinger and McCarthy.
GENIS IS READY
Genis, for example, felt that her accomplishments while previously a member of the city council, including a term as mayor, prepared her for the discussions that might be planned. She cited the fact that she was instrumental in the Parks and Recreation Commission being established, the Farm Sports Complex being purchased and the creation of the original Joint Use Agreement with the Newport Mesa School District.
STEPHENS MAY FLY SOLO...
Stephens felt confident his more than two decades of involvement and leadership in youth sports activities had prepared him for the discussions. He told me that, since he had cleared his calendar to participate, if the forum remains cancelled that he just might take a cooler of soft drinks down to the Neighborhood Community Center Thursday evening and be prepared to discuss his views on the issues with anyone who cares to show up. Of course, I teased him about holding court among the homeless who inhabit the area.. we both chuckled.. We'll see how that works out.
WILL THEY RECONSIDER?
So, the ball is back in the court of Costa Mesa United. I admire their willingness to step away from what they apparently thought was not a level playing field, but the three candidates have taken them off the hook. There is a body of thought that this forum was cancelled to protect Mensinger and McCarthy from further embarassment like that they experienced at the Feet To The Fire Forum. We'll see how they respond to the request to reinstate the forum.
NO, I DIDN'T ASK GARY
And, in case you're worried about it - NO, I did not contact Gary Monahan for his views on this issue. I didn't want to bother him on a very busy work night. We all know how testy when events interfere with the chance to make a buck. Hot weather brings out a lot of folks seeking a cool beverage - or a dozen - for relief. Besides, as poorly as he did at the recent Feet To The Fire Forum, I suspect he might have breathed a big sigh of relief when this one was cancelled.