Dick Ackerman’s Legacy: a Hideous Monster

Oh my God! Kill it!
Oh my God! Kill it before it reproduces!


Some observant folks might inquire as to why a map of the 33rd State Senate District is such an ungainly looking thing. Why is Fullerton attached to the rest of it by the narrowest of territorial filaments?  Who thinks that the constituents of Fullerton should or want to be represented in the State Senate by the same person representing people who live in Laguna Niguel and Ladera; or vice versa, for that matter? Our old friend Dick Ackerman, that’s who.

Wikipedia diplomatically describes the cause of the 33rd’s odd shape as redistricting – driven by “population growth” in South Orange County. Frankly, this description is just too idiotic to contemplate. The entry omits the key member of that southward population growth – Dick Ackerman – former Fullerton Councilman and State Assemblyman, who ran for the old 33rd senate seat in 2000 after he had already moved out of Fullerton. Can anybody believe the inclusion of Ackerman’s old Fullerton stomping grounds in what is otherwise an eastern and southern county district, is the result of an objective redistricting? Or could it be that a lot of deal making was going on in the cut and paste creation of AB632 that established the new senate districts?

He looks a little better with soft lighting...
Dick's district looks a little better with soft lighting...

Also of note is that upside down wedge of the 34th District that intrudes north of the 91 with an odd little projection that stretches up to Raymond and Chapman. A coincidence? Maybe, if you believe in such fantasies as tooth fairies and political coincidences. Here’s a map you Friends can zoom in on:

Live and learn.

Interestingly enough, if Dick A sought to warn off challengers through these district boundaries, he needn’t have bothered. He won election in 2000 with about 65% of the vote; in 2004 he got 69%. We got fellow district denizens in the Capistrano Valley. Well, maybe Dick just liked visiting his old pals in Fullerton while toting an impressive job title. Who knows? The upshot is that we are now represented by one Mimi Walters who hails from South County.

By the way, Loyal Friends, here’s how the pros did it in the old days:

The original gerry.mander
The original gerrymander. Are you our daddy?

19 Replies to “Dick Ackerman’s Legacy: a Hideous Monster”

  1. It appears to have two heads. I wonder if you cut it in two if both halves would grow. It sure does seem like one more reason to give Ackerman a sarcastic attaboy.

    I’ve been watching Dick’s career for the past eight years as he kept foisting lousy candidates on Fullerton and promoting miserable lefty donkeys like Dick (oh no, another Dick) Riordan on the State level.

    Adios and good riddance!

  2. Doesn’t Norby live in the “extention” of that funny looking wedge?

    If so, maybe Ackerman intentionally squeezed him out of the 33rd. Or am I being too cynical?

  3. Tony, Fullerton has shared the 33rd Senate District with South County cities since 1991, the Special Masters panel of three retired judges created it an SD33 that doesn’t differ much from its current, 2000-redistricting configuration.

    Nice try, though, trying to pin Fullerton’s inclusion in the 33rd on Dick Ackerman.

    1. Matthew, I did not write the post..

      And what you are saying is tantamount to saying dogs chew on bones.

  4. The 33rd was redrawn in 2001 by Assembly Bill 632. By then most of north OC had been removed except for Fullerton – a weird wedge of which was excluded. Fullerton was connected to the rest of the 33rd by a few hundred yard strip along the 91 Freeway. It’s an obvious gerrymander. I wonder what those Special Master panelists had to say about that.

    2001 would have been a time to keep Fullerton with the other north OC cities. Didn’t happen. Wonder why. Oh, that’s right! All the incumbents were greasing each others skids and Ackerman wanted to keep Fullerton!

  5. #5, I was going to make the same point. Mr. Cunningham is clearly one of those guys who likes to dispute points by making statements that are true but irrelevant.

    In 2001 Fullerton should have been removed from the 33rd completely and joined to other north OC communities.

    Watching that redistricting process must have been a real show to watch.

  6. #4 – your statement makes no sense. in 1991 there was no Aliso Viejo, hardly any Rancho Santa Margarita, no Las Flores, no Ladera, etc., etc.

    Compare the 2001 map with the 1991 map.


    Fullerton is now an island surrounded by other districts except for the tiny neck at the 91 and 57.

    Ackerman and his ilk may not like to contemplate it but Fullerton is going to go blue when all the Ackerman voters die off. And we’ll be stuck in a south county district. maybe that was the idea, too.

  7. If I might point out, the original post made it out as if including Fullerton in the same district as South County cities was an alien situation and unique to the 2001 re-districting.

    That was untrue and misleading, and I corrected it. I’m curious why the poster chose to omit that information in the first place?

  8. Perhaps Joe Sipowitz can tell us what cities should have been added to the 33rd to make up for the population loss caused by excluding Fullerton, and then how he would have re-drawn the lines of the adjacent districts that had their cities leeched away to fulfill your wish of a Fullerton unattached to South County?

    After all, you make it sound so simple.

  9. Glad you came back Mr. Cunningham. I had you pegged all right. Talking abut the 1991 redistricting was the typical sleight of hand they warned us about in high school forensics. Pretty soon we would be arguing about something irrelevant. The relevant issue is that the inclusion of Fullerton was a gerrymander – regardles of whether it had been in a previous district with the same number.

    I read the post and it was crystal clear. The fact that you interpreted something wrong only reflects on your own comprehension. Fullerton is now connected to these cities by 600 foot wide strip at the 91 Freeway. Look at the maps. When the redistricting was done in 2001 Ackerman obviously kept Fullerton in it. Why did he do that? He’s your pal why don’t you get the answer and report back.

    As far as redistricting goes, I’m sure it was far from simple. All those politicians trying to carve up the turkey must have been pretty messy. And judging by our district the results were pretty ugly.

    BTW, I’ve been to your site and it’s nothing but an abject stooge operation for Republican politicians so it figures you’d be over here pimping for Ackerman.

  10. Thanks, Joe. You saved me the trouble of getting mixed up in a senseless tar baby with that flack.

  11. Arguing with that guy is fruitless. He’ll never admit he is wrong and he’ll always have the last word. In short a typical Republican noise machine. Turn the key and set it going.

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