Last week Fly took a close look at the life of Manh Nguyen, a Vietnamese media executive and candidate for a San Jose City Council seat. It turns out he rented an apartment in District 4 last November, just weeks before he declared his candidacy, which sounded like an odd maneuver for someone who claims to be a longtime D4 resident. We also learned that he’s a bit of a Ladies Manh. Several readers suggested Fly turn its attention on Nguyen’s opponent in the June 23 special election, Tim Orozco, and some of those tips had merit. Orozco said in a phone interview that he has twice been arrested for driving drunk—the first incident occurring more than 30 years ago in college, and the second occurring almost 17 years ago, around the same time he was working on the campaign of U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer. Orozco said they were mistakes in judgment he’s learned from and that he’s fine to still have a drink from time to time in social situations. He admitted, however, it was a bit “unnerving” to see his personal life being discussed publicly. A former staffer to Assemblywoman Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) and now an employee for state Sen. Bob Wieckowski (D-Fremont)—in addition to campaigning, Orozco said, he still works a minimum of 17.5 hours a week to retain health benefits—the microscope that comes with getting out front and running for public office has been a new experience; as has fundraising. Orozco said his advisers told him he needed to raise $70,000 in the runoff to defeat Nguyen, and right now he’s only about halfway to that goal with five weeks remaining in the race. As for any residency claims, Orozco said he moved home from San Diego to North San Jose in 2012 to be closer to family. The Registrar of Voters confirmed he lives at his mother’s house and has voted in each election since returning to San Jose.
Published by The Fly
The Fly is a weekly column written by San Jose Inside staff that provides a behind-the-scenes look at local politics. View more posts