Chino Hills: Activists Say No to Council Districts


8-31-2016, Dan Titus, – Extremists groups are demanding that cities in California bend to their will  under the guise of social justice and social equity. These groups are sending letters to cities and demanding that they switch from “at large” voting for city council members, where everyone in the city votes for a candidate from anywhere in the city, to district voting. District voting would allow voting for a candidate within a specific district only. The city would be fractured into multiple districts, like a broken pane of glass. They claim that voting districts would represent “Latino” candidates better. This is a false choice.

Their ploy is to setup concentrated districts based on race, primarily in suburban areas of California. Suburban areas are typically politically conservation. Redistricting favors minority groups, which tend to vote progressive. Coupled with HUD’s affirmative action rules for cities taking grant money, districts put in motion the potential for concentrated voting blocks. Add in sustainable high-density housing that cities are rezoning for and the climate is ripe for ghettos based on ethnicity all couched around social justice.

In a letter to the Chino Hills City Council, The Chino Hills Citizen Action Committee (CHCAC) – a local grass-roots group – argues that the case for redistricting does not hold water:

Did you know that people in the city of Chino Hills are racist, prejudice and have “radically” polarized elections? – Neither did we. But, that is the contention of a extremist “civil rights” group making salacious claims and wants to dictate local control in our city.

Chino Hills is a culture club of ethic identities. It is highly diverse city and prides itself on its cultural heritage. Any 4th grade student knows that the Spanish settled California and that the roots of Chino Hills sprouted from that rich heritage.  And now we have outsiders rewriting our historical past and dictating our future?

Meddling by outsiders in our voting process and offering solutions to a problem that does not exist, usurps our elected form of government and will constrain real voter choice in the city.

We have received concerns from residents and conservative groups about a civil rights entity trying to extort the Chino Hills council into action based on false claims through a demand for compliance with the California Voting Rights Act.

In a “shake down” letter to the city, the Mexican American Legal Defense and Educational Fund (MALDEF) stated that the city of Chino Hills did not have enough Latino representation on its city council.  The letter stated, “… only one Latino, current city council member Ray Marquez has served on the city council since the City’s incorporation.” This is a pat lie. Their circular logic is based on surnames and does not consider the maiden names of former council members or candidates that have run for office.

Their contention that “…the lack of success of Latino candidates results from the inability of Latino voters to elect candidates of choice due to racially polarized voting among the electorate.” This statement is a false claim. Their statement negates former Latino citizens that have run for city council, and did not win.

The “solution” of dividing the city into districts, thereby somehow providing Latino’s a leg up in getting on to city council, won’t work. Suburban and rural communities are highly diversified unlike large urban cities. Comparing the two is like comparing apples and oranges. Dividing the city into districts based on ethnicity is like trying to sort salt and pepper in to piles after they have been mixed together in a casserole. Does the city of Chino Hills desire suburban ghettos? Redistricting sure seems to promote the idea. Furthermore, redistricting violates our right to a republican form of government provided by the U.S. Constitution.

MALDEF offered no proof to substantiate their false claims and they hide behind the California Voting Right Act of 2001 (CVRA) as justification.  Therefore, their claims that at-large elections are “polarizing” is ludicrous. Their demand letter dated August 9, 2016 to divide the city into voting districts, limiting voter choice, is without merit.


Therefore, we request that the Chino Hills City Council:

  1. Defend Claims: The city of Chino Hills needs to defend false accusations and claims made by MALDEF.
  2. No Redistricting in Advance of Litigation: The city does not need to spend taxpayer money on a consultant to develop redistricting maps.
  3. Chino Hills is Exceptional: Every city is unique; therefore, assessing redistricting based on previous case litigation is moot. For example, the city of Palmdale redistricting case has been cited by cities considering redistricting and is not applicable to the City of Chino Hills.