Races of the Week:Coronado vs. Sanchez

In a district represented in Congress by a Democrat with an 11% rating from the American Conservative Union in a state increasingly known as America’s Western Liberal Stronghold, there are, nevertheless, high hopes within the GOP for conservative Republican can Dr. Alexandria Coronado, the challenger to Rep. Loretta Sanchez (D.-Calif.).

A graduate of Anaheim high schools and USC, Dr. Coronado is a young, energetic businesswoman. Aside from owning her own company, she has also twice won elective office in the district and is currently vice president of the Orange county Board of Education. In that capacity, she became a local conservative heroine as leader of the successful movement to recall far-leftist Nativo Lopez from the Santa Ana School Board. Said Dr. Coronado: “I have a very good voting base to work from. That’s one of the reasons people. . . think I can take her [four-termer Sanchez] out of there.”

When it comes to issues, Dr. Coronado is decisive. “I strongly believe, let me re-iterate, I strongly believe that the federal government has no business sticking its nose into education,” she declares, “There is no way that Washington, D.C., can sit there and tell a local school district what to do. I think it’s outrageous and they do not help us at all. In fact, they really help to depress and oppress the local school districts and that’s not just coming from me here in Anaheim–it’s coming from people all over the country.”

Asked if she is pro-life she responded with an enthusiastic: “Yes I am.” Mention of the issue makes the Republican nominee pause for a moment, recall her involvement while a young woman “with someone who turned out to be a very bad man,” how she became pregnant and, after heart-wrenching and prayerful discussions with her parents, underwent a crisis pregnancy and bore the child. “How could I be while anything but pro-life after that?” declares the proud single parent.

This pro-life stance stands in striking contrast to that of Rep. Sanchez, whose official position reads: “Congresswoman Sanchez supports the existing law of the nation that gives a woman the right to choose on the issue of reproductive rights.”

As for gun rights, Dr. Coronado believes in every citizen’s lawful right to own a firearm. “I think restricting your 2nd Amendment rights is absolutely abominable, because the minute the government takes your arms is the minute you have an oppressive government,” she said, “And we’ve seen it time and time again in history.” This also is in great contrast to Rep. Sanchez’s gun stance which says: “Congresswoman Sanchez supports a citizen’s right to own a gun, provided there are background checks, waiting periods and safe storage laws in place to assure the most responsible possible gun ownership. She has support the assault weapons ban in the past and continues to do so.”

A descendent of governors of colonial Mexico, Dr. Coronado also believes only immigrants who enter the country legally should be allowed to stay and that illegal aliens are exactly that–illegal. Sanchez, of course, is still inevitably recalled as the upset winner in 1996 over Republican Rep. Bob Dornan by fewer than 1,000 votes, with a probe showing widespread evidence of voting by undocumented aliens.

Her ability to draw a vivid contrast with the incumbent, her record as campaigner and organizer, and her youth all make Alexandria Coronado an attractive candidate. Moreover, under the direction of Chris Jones, longtime right-hand man to Republican State Sen. John Lewis, a battalion of hard-working volunteers is taking her message throughout the 47th District. “But this is California and it will still take $800,000 to win,” says Coronado, “And that’s why I need conservative friends in and out of California. To help out.”