Southern California Greek American Community Unites In Support of State Treasurer Phil Angelides Gubernatorial Campaign
Los Angeles, CA.- On Sunday, November 13, 2005, the Southern California Hellenic community united in an evening of celebration in support of State Treasurer, Phil Angelides’ bid to become the first Greek American Governor of California. Hosted by the American Hellenic Council and held at the University of Southern California’s Town and Gown Ballroom, the dinner reception brought together over 200 leaders of the community from all social, economic, and political backgrounds. Republicans, Democrats, and Independents all united under a banner of Hellenism in support of one of their own. The event, which is only beginning of the growing support for Treasurer Angelides, brought in over $80,000.
The highlight of the evening was Treasurer Angelides’ remarks. Hailed by many pundits as “the Anti-Arnold,” Angelides showed his overwhelming grasp of the challenges facing California as well as the necessary steps to move the nation’s largest state forward. Following the electorate’s declarative rejection of the Schwarzenegger agenda in the recent Special Election, Treasurer Angelides outlined his goals for a California committed to the betterment of all, with a focus on education, healthcare, and corporate responsibility.
The evening also featured speeches by California State Senator and former Los Angeles mayoral candidate, Richard Alarcón, and the American Hellenic Council President, Dino Andrianos. Senator Alarcón spoke briefly on why he chose to endorse Treasurer Angelides, highlighting his strength of character and commitment to public service. Following Mr. Andrianos’ official greetings, he espoused on why the AHC had chosen to organize the evening’s gathering. While the AHC exists as a non-partisan organization dedicated to fostering peace and stability in the Eastern Mediterranean and Southern Europe, Mr. Andrianos reminded the crowd that the organization had a long history of supporting Hellenes, both Republicans and Democrats, in their efforts to be among the nation’s leading policy makers. He emphasized, “the opportunity to see a Helene atop the largest state in the country is a once in a lifetime chance.”
Serving as Master of Ceremonies was Demetrios A. Boutris, President of Boutris Group, Inc. and former Commissioner & CEO, California Department of Corporations. In his introductory remarks, Mr. Boutris highlighted recent polling data which show Treasurer Angelides with a seven point lead over Gov. Schwarzenegger and also ahead of all Democratic primary contenders.
FAVORED TO WIN
Despite a bitter and unpopular special election campaign, voters say they are as likely — or, rather, as unlikely — to re-elect Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger next year as they were six months ago.
A Field Poll released on November 3, 2005, found 55 percent of voters not inclined to vote for Schwarzenegger; 36 percent said they were inclined to vote for him. Those numbers remained statistically unchanged from June when 57 percent said they were not inclined to vote for him and 39 percent said they were.
In addition, 46 percent of voters said Schwarzenegger’s call for the special election has made them more likely to oppose him in next year’s election; 29 percent said the special election has made them more likely to support him.
While the governor’s unpopular special election appears to be hurting him in the polls, his Democratic opponents have so far been unable to fully capitalize. When matched against possible Democratic candidates who might face him next year — state treasurer Phil Angelides, state controller Steve Westly, movie director Rob Reiner and actor Warren Beatty — Schwarzenegger remains competitive with each.
Schwarzenegger trails Angelides (47 percent-41 percent), Westly (46-40) and Reiner (45-43), but leads Beatty (44-41). Neither Reiner nor Beatty have announced they are running.
The Field Poll surveyed 1,450 registered voters from Oct. 18 to Oct. 30 and had a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points.