On Saturday July 15, 2017, we had our second Q&A event with 48th congressional candidates. Roughly, 180 people showed up to hear Harley Rouda and Tony Zarkades answer questions at the Huntington Beach Yacht Club from 10am-12:30pm.
The event started with our sponsored charity for May-July, Robyne’s Nest, founder, Robyne Wood who discussed how she started the organization when she saw a need for students who were struggling for basic support. Robyne’s Nest provides support to homeless and at-risk students in Huntington Beach through living stipends, food pantries, assistance to social services and healthcare, and life skill classes. For information about Robyne’s Nest or to make a donation, please see: https://www.robynesnest.org/.
To see a full video of the Candidate Q&A, check out this link on Resist Live. (If you don’t see it right away scroll through the videos and look for the one titled: In Huntington Beach today, a group of residents…)
Big Thanks to Alex Matthews for recording this video and posting it! The video already has 3000 views.
The Q&A had a similar format to our previous event with Laura Oatman & Boyd Roberts. Candidates had 10 minutes to introduce themselves, then each HB Huddle Action Team asked a question related to their policy topic, and each candidates had two minutes to respond. Audience members also had an opportunity to submit questions, here is a full list of the questions:
- Which environmental protections are important to you and how will you balance them with economic growth?
- Democrats usually fall into two camps in healthcare: Fixing ACA or supporting single-payer healthcare? Where do you fall on the spectrum and how do you plan to keep Big Pharma out of decision making?
- What is your stance on Citizens United and how to combat voter suppression?
- How will you determine the needs and wants of residents regardless of voter status?
- What two Women’s Rights issues are most important to you?
- If you are the democrat chosen to run against Rohrabacher, what issues you will you bring to the forefront to ensure victory?
- What should the US’ stance be on accepting political refugees?
- What is your relationship with unions and how will you protect labor rights?
- What will you do about the opioid epidemic in OC?
- What will you do to protect LQBTQ rights?
- What are your views on charter vs. public school funding?
“Free tuition for all public schools should be the law of the land.” – Tony Zarkades
“If you provide living wages, you provide people hope.” – Harley Rouda
After the candidate Q&A our five Action Teams updated the group on recent activities:
Karen Coyne of our environment group provided an overview of the HB Huddle and introduced our new logo designed by Casey Ryder for free. Check it out:
Huge thanks to Casey for our amazing logo. Casey is the Creative Director of Global Marketing for Beats by Dre and a former designer for Obama For America and we are grateful for his time working on this design. Our communications team will be working on ordering t-shirts, a banner, and other marketing materials in August.
Environment Team Updates (Karen Coyne):
Water Committee: Karen shared that funding was approved by OCWD for an additional $90,000 (for a total of $320,000 of our tax dollars) to support/consider Poseidon despite the fact that there were no speakers advocating the funding and several against it.
Toxin-Free HB Committee: Karen encouraged audience to sign this petition on change.org to tell leaders in HB to stop using toxic pesticides in parks. Here’s a quick video from the creators of the petition:
Trash-Free HB Waters Committee: Karen shared the state trash policy implementation process has begun, and HB (as well as every other city and county in the state) will have 90 days to pick an implementation option.
Energy Committee: Steve Shepherd shared the Energy Committee will be coordinating a CCE 4 HB write-in campaign for postcards, letters, & email. Anyone interested in attending or speaking at the City Council meeting in support of CCE 4 HB, please contact the Environment Action Team. Click here to join their Facebook page.
Healthcare Team Update (Christian Mach):
Christian discussed the importance of single-payer healthcare system.
Local Elections Team Updates (Cathy Ryder and Brendon Perkins):
Voter Outreach Committee:
Cathy and Brendon shared the accomplishments of the outreach team in their voter registration training and encouraged people to sign up for voter registration booths and purchase voter registration kits. Click here for the Facebook event page for their next meeting.
Education committee: Information on public elected officials is available on their page on our website
Services and Social Committee: The HB Huddle has raised $355 for Robyne’s Nest. The next sponsored charity is Beach Cities Inter-Faith Services
Direction Action Committee: They are organizing a presence at HB City Council meetings.
#NoBanNoWall Update (Shayna Lathus):
Shayna shared they have completed their infographic on hate crimes, which is available here on the website. At their July meeting, they discussed two priorities: Building bridges between the immigrant communities and ourselves and working toward making HB a Sanctuary City.
Women’s Rights update (Hayley Buchannan):
The Women’s Rights team passed out informational sheet on Planned Parenthood and informed audience about Planned Parenthood Advocacy Nights in Santa Ana. They have completed the design of their t-shirts to sell to raise money.
Action teams then had 30 minutes for their breakout sessions.
The HB Huddle will go dark in the month of August. A committee had been planning to host a bipartisan Town Hall event at OCC in August.
The committee had initially received a positive response from Rohrabacher’s local office and were instructed to call the local office to set up a meeting with local Republican party affiliates and HB Huddle members to discuss the possibility of Rohrabacher Skyping into the event. Unfortunately when the committee called to schedule the appointment this week communications with the local office fell apart. Since the congressman’s participation is unlikely, the August event has been cancelled, but the committee will revisit the idea in the future.
Therefore, the next scheduled HB Huddle meeting will be a third “Get Know Your Candidates Forum” featuring Hans Keirstead and Omar Siddiqui on Saturday, September 16 from 10:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. at Carden Elementary School.