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Morning Briefing: OC Candidates Court Vietnamese American Vote

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Good morning, L.A.

As election day gets closer, local races are heating up. In Orange County, one of the most hotly contested races is for the 48th Congressional District, and at the center of the battle is a group of voters who say they haven’t been courted like this before: those in the area’s dense Vietnamese community.

My colleague Josie Huang reports that the candidates — incumbent Democratic Congressman Harley Rouda, who flipped the district in a 2018 upset, and Republican Michelle Steel, an Orange County Supervisor — have been flooding the community with campaign paraphernalia.

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"I've never seen this many mailers, this many signs, and this much effort from two non-Vietnamese candidates into the Vietnamese community," said resident Tam Nguyen.

Nguyen and many of his neighbors also believe the effort is long overdue; with an estimated 200,000 people of Vietnamese descent, the Little Saigon area of Orange County is home to the largest concentration of Vietnamese people outside of Vietnam.

Keep reading for more on what’s happening in L.A. today, and stay safe out there.

Jessica P. Ogilvie


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The Past 24 Hours In LA

Crime: L.A. County saw an increase in anti-Asian and anti-transgender crimes in 2019. The man who bought and later provided two of the rifles used in the 2015 San Bernardino mass shooting was sentenced to 20 years in prison.

Teachers And Kids: A survey of L.A. teachers found that they’re working overtime and worried that the district will reopen schools too soon. How do you help disappointed kids cope with a different kind of Halloween this year, and give them alternatives to trick-or-treating?

First Person: LAist contributor James Rojas writes about the shared Brown-Black spaces of his 1970s youth as a Chicano growing up and coming out in L.A. Hannibal Buress spoke to us about comedy in the pandemic, performing at the Rose Bowl and more.

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Election 2020: The Vietnamese American vote is being courted like never before in Orange County's CA-48 Congressional race.


Weekend Reads

There's a lot going on in the world right now, and it’s hard enough to keep up with our day-to-day lives, let alone to stay current on the news. But if you have some time this weekend, these articles provide much-needed insight into the current moment in L.A., as well as some news you may have missed:

Inglewood Unified School District staff say they face ongoing racial discrimination. The first such complaints were made in 2014. (2 Urban Girls)

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Back to the Future screenwriter Bob Gale explains the significance of Emmett "Doc" Brown’s Denver Broncos clock in the movie’s opening scene. (The Hollywood Reporter)

Protesters threw bags of polluted dirt from their yards at the federal courthouse in downtown L.A. to denounce the contamination left behind by battery company Exide – and the company’s refusal to clean it up. (L.A. Times)

Even as Hollywood attempts to diversify in front of and behind the camera, most television executives are still white men. (Variety)

Trump’s insistence that he has the support of the Latino community may just be to soothe his white supporters who fear being perceived as racist. (LA Taco)

After a developer insisted that no public funds would be used for costs related to the proposed Clippers arena, the Inglewood City Council approved … public funds being used for costs related to the Clippers arena. (2 Urban Girls)

The Sixth Street Bridge, which will connect the Arts District and Boyle Heights, is getting closer to completion. (The Eastsider)

Employees of the California Air Resources Board claim that their workplace is steeped in racist culture. (The Sacramento Bee)


Photo Of The Day

James Rojas, a local urban planner, leading one of his Place IT! workshops which uses model-building and on-site interactive models to help engage the public in the planning and design process.

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(Courtesy James Rojas)

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The news cycle moves fast. Some stories don't pan out. Others get added. Consider this today's first draft, and check LAist.com for updates on these stories and more. Follow us on Twitter, Facebook and Instagram.

This post has been updated to reflect changes in what's coming up for today.

Correction: An earlier version of this story misidentified where the ballot box fire took place. LAist regrets the error.


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