SHARI GRACE, San Clemente
The resounding defeat and rejection of council candidate Jackson Hinkle wasn’t a surprise to most people who follow local politics.
The most shocking thing was that San Clemente’s old establishment politicos, such as former Mayor Bob Baker and current Councilmembers Kathy Ward and Chris Hamm, supported him despite his having zero experience at 20 years of age, as well as his hard left radical record and positions.
How did Hinkle, who only graduated high school last year, who within a year falsely described himself as an “Energy Policy Advisor” for a company in Oslo and as a “Marketing Specialist” for a $500 million-a-year health-food company, raise and spend over $30,000 and lose in a landslide?
Despite having an independent expenditure from a Nevada-based developer and the endorsement and monetary support of public employee unions, Hinkle got over a thousand fewer votes than he did just a year ago. How is that possible?
First, his extreme left actions such as taking a knee during the National Anthem to protest the “police state,” getting arrested blocking hallways in the U.S. Capitol, and choosing to celebrate the Fourth of July by protesting outside an immigration office and posting a photo of himself with a fist in the air calling for open borders are way off the mainstream political spectrum.
Those and more hard-left actions scare average voters.
The second part that gave voters pause was how Hinkle attempted to reinvent himself from his actions only a year ago to appeal to voters and appease his “old timey” backers who were looking for a malleable elected official.
For someone who stated that his goal was to “become President of the United States,” Jackson Hinkle may have used up his 15 minutes of boyish fame by running and losing twice despite tens of thousands of dollars and Old Guard backing.
Maybe, over time, Hinkle may mature and grow to appreciate American values, hard work, and ease up on his arrogance and radical views.
Until then, even with a few more years under his belt, he will continuously be rejected by voters in San Clemente.