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ANAHEIM : Assembly Candidates in 2 Races Trade Barbs

October 19, 1994|MARTIN MILLER

Democratic and Republican candidates in two state Assembly races traded barbs on crime issues Tuesday, with each side accusing the other of lying.

Democrat Irv Pickler, seeking to unseat Curt Pringle (R-Garden Grove) in the 68th Assembly District, said the incumbent "fabricated" Pickler's stand on "three strikes and you're out" legislation in recent campaign literature. At the same press conference at Anaheim City Hall, Democrat Mike Metzler made identical charges of misrepresentation against Jim Morrissey, his Republican opponent in the 69th Assembly District race.

The Democrats produced mailers from their opponents that contended Pickler and Metzler oppose Proposition 184, the "three strikes" initiative, which calls for substantially longer prison sentences for repeat felons. However, Pickler and Metzler said they support the initiative and always have.

"Pringle is one of the most dishonest politicians in California," said Pickler, an Anaheim councilman. "He will say or do anything to win election."

But the Republicans countered that the Democrats' endorsement of the "three strikes" initiative is new. Both Republican candidates said they based their mailers on a news report that indicated the Democrats backed a less stringent version of "three strikes," not the tougher Proposition 184.

"It was a way to ride the 'three strikes' bandwagon without supporting Proposition 184," said Pringle. "(But) we are glad to have him aboard now."

Metzler "changed his position because we hit him hard and heavy," added Mark Thompson, a political consultant with the Morrissey campaign. "If we are talking deception, the real deception is theirs."

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