Thanks primarily to the generosity of people from this website, I will be able to pay my filing fee this morning. In return for your generosity, I can offer you -- well, at this point, only an update.
I'm Greg Diamond -- a member of this site since 2005, posting initially as "Major Danby" and since 2008 as "Seneca Doane." I raised $1,109 from noon yesterday until 9 a.m. today (pacific time) -- and, why yes, that will take you to a page with a contribution link! (Thanks, by the way!) Most of that money isn't yet processed, but it should trickle in over the course of the day. Unfortunately, I need it by 11 a.m, but the excess will be used to repay a $1,500 loan to the campaign coming from ... my rent money. My overdue rent money. (I notified my landlord earlier this week that I was going to be late. Sometimes it's best not to explain why.)
You see, I need to show up at the Registrar of Voters office with a check or money order in hand in order to get the papers -- including the signatures of 20 voters -- that I need to have filled out and filed by the 5:00 final deadline. I can't wait for processing to be complete -- so hello, rent money!
If you don't know about my sudden campaign for Orange County District Attorney, which came about only when it became clear that an expected candidate with almost $1,000,000 in his war chest was convinced not to run, then please read my diary from yesterday: I'm Running Against the DA Who Blew the Kelly Thomas Murder Trial.
And yes, I still need contributions. My opponent picked up $419,000 from fat cat donors in one evening in Newport Beach; I'm going to need to do more than just make a bunch of fiery, witty, and learned speeches to downtrodden voters in Santa Ana and Anaheim about what a large county district attorney should do to treat people fairly.
Of course, if you read this story about the acquittal yesterday of a police office who shot an unarmed and young fleeing Latino man in the backside, and then came up to him and shot him once more in the head to make sure that he wasn't a threat to the officer's safety -- you'll know that I'll have plenty to talk about. I was one of the primary "citizen journalists" (ok, bloggers) to cover this story from the outset from a legal perspective -- and I publicized and attended multiple rallies over this and a subsequent killing of the son of a woman who has since become my good friend.
Should someone with my views on the apparent summary execution of youth -- which had become a bad habit by 2012 -- be running for District Attorney here? Oh, I THINK SO!
We can't stand -- I can't stand -- the lack of a candidate who will be a strong voice of opposition. So here I am. On my way to pick up the rent money.
My wife is, as you might guess, unamused by this. She thinks it's crazy that I should have to be the one to challenge the 16-year incumbent -- because it is. An attorney who is having to scrape together liquid funds to make a $2,500 payment should not have to be the only candidate to challenge a sitting DA with a record of tolerating public corruption and routine violation of average people's rights. Orange County is the 6th largest county in the nation, with 3.1 million people -- about the size of Iowa -- and it is filled with wealthy attorneys, many of whom have wonderfully liberal views on civil rights and opposition to corporate giveaways to campaign donors.
And none of them are running. This is sort of a career killer, is the fear. People talk darkly of retribution. Orange County is sort of like one of those rural counties in South Carolina or Georgia, where the law is not your friend -- except that we have maybe 10,000 times the amount of money flowing around here, making it ripe for payoffs and arrangements.
So that deters a lot of challengers to the unanimously endorsed GOP candidate. And lots of Democrats are in on the gravy train as well -- as Vice-Chair of the County Democratic Party, I have to deal with more than my share of Liebermans and Evan Bayhs and Harold Fords around here -- which makes offering real political opposition much more "entrepreneurial" than institutional.
I'm proud of my willingness to run -- and I'm ashamed as an Orange Countian that I'm apparently the only one willing to bear that burden. But one thing I've learned here is that sometimes you just have to lead by example for people to get the idea of what they should do as well. So, this will be my example.
As for you: I'm grateful to whatever support you can comfortably provide -- and nothing beyond that, please. You'll find my bare-bones website -- seriously, I just decided to run, so I will humbly hope that you will cut me some slack and I promise to get to the "issues" statements when I can! -- at democracy.com/DiamondForDA. For now, the "contribute" and "volunteer" buttons are all you need to find and use. I'll post more there soon.
Thanks for your attention -- and, on behalf of Orange County, for your help. You are welcome to share this as you please.
9:34 PM PT: I'M IN! And I'm exhausted. And the state Dem Party convention is tomorrow and Sunday. But then I will update on Sunday night!