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Republicans in Huntington Beach Rally Behind Charter Amendments


Huntington Beach voters will be asked during the March primary to vote on three new charter amendments, including one that would aid voter protection. 


Huntington Beach Republicans are rallying behind three charter amendments slated for the March primary that would aid in voter protection, among other items.


Voters will now be asked a range of topics for the three charters, starting off by deciding if they want to change local municipal elections, which would include voter ID requirements. The second would seek to only allow the government, military, the POW/MIA and possibly Olympic flag to fly. The third would deal with administrative changes, targeting how the City Council would be able to fill vacancies and adjusting the city’s budget to a biennial event.


Due to a 4-3 vote from the Huntington Beach City Council in early October, the three measures were decidedly added to the upcoming 2024 primary ballot. Conservative members then-Mayor Tony Strickland, Mayor Pro Tem Gracey Van Der Mark, Councilman Casey McKeon and Councilman Pat Burns all voted for the measure, while Councilman Dan Kalmick and Councilwomen Natalie Moser and Rhonda Bolton attempted to stop the push.


While disputes circulated over the cost of the election and the measures, Strickland stated that he believed the ballot additions could have the potential to give people more “trust and faith” within the system, according to The Orange County Register. 


“People have to have trust and faith in our election system, otherwise our democracy doesn’t work,” Strickland stated. 


Some criticisms of the amendments have stated they are “racist,” yet Van Der Mark is vehemently pushing back against that claim, highlighting her own experience as a “person of color.” 


“As a teenager, we were poor, [but] we were not ignorant,” Van Der Mark stated, according to the outlet. “We were not incapable of getting an ID. I don’t know if you guys realize how racist it even sounds for you guys to say that people of color are incapable of getting an ID. That’s offensive. I do not like identity politics, but I will point this out. Every single person who said people of color could not get IDs was not a person of color, but yet they’re speaking for me. I can speak for myself.”


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