That Would Be “Great Moments in HISPANIC Municipal Governance”

This is an item from James Taranto`s WSJ Best Of The Web column:

Great Moments in Municipal Governance
San Fernando, Calif., a city of 24,000 in the northern part of the eponymous valley, has a few problems with its local government. Among them, according to the San Fernando Sun: “a police chief `on vacation` for having sex with a cadet,” “a police dispatcher caught exposing himself,” and a member of the city council who “votes on the police department while having a sexual affair” with a police sergeant.

As of last week, there`s one more:

With his wife, Anna, sitting in the front row, Mayor Mario Hernandez, for whatever reason, decided Monday night was the night to formally announce that he lost his business, and filed personal and corporate bankruptcy. “And secondly,” Mayor Hernandez said, “I`d like to put out there, `to squash the rumors,` that yes, I have been in a relationship with Councilwoman (Maribel) De La Torre.” . . .

The aggrieved wife bravely stood up and said, “That`s why I`m here . . .” Mayor Hernandez retorted, “Yes, I know” as she continued to try to speak, saying “I`m his wife. . . . We weren`t separated.”

The paper notes: “It`s no surprise that Mayor Hernandez failed to take the city`s mandatory ethics training last February.” If his failure to take it led him to behave like this, that must be one hell of a good ethics course.

There`s a lot of fun stuff at the story he was linking to,[As the City Turns- San Fernando Mayor Mario Hernandez Admits Affair with Councilwoman Maribel De La Torre,by Diana Martinez, Editor, San Fernando Sun,November  23, 2011] but this is not just a “Great Moment” in municipal government, it`s a great moment in Hispanic municipal government. The city of of San Fernando, CA is over 92 percent Hispanic.

In 2006, Dave Weigel, bashing Pat Buchanan`s book State Of Emergency, asked this question:

“Can anyone point me to the border towns where democracy has collapsed, supplanted by Latin American-style caudillos? “

At the time I was able to point to South Gate, California.[See South Gate: Mexico Comes to California By Roger D. McGrath, The American Conservative, May 19, 2003]

I might also have mentioned Maywood, CA or Bell, CA. I can now add San Fernando.