Mavrick Von Haug, the one-time mixed martial arts fighter turned actor who has more recently been bitten by the political bug, has resigned his current elected position to concentrate on a run for governor.
Von Haug was the top vote-getter in the November 2016 race among four candidates for two positions on the Lucerne Valley Unified School District board of trustees, gathering 848 votes or 28.34 percent. He replaced Joanne Collingham. But he has now voluntarily renounced his hold on that position to concentrate his political firepower in an effort to become California’s 40th governor.
He and his wife, Gwen, recently sojourned from Lucerne Valley to Sacramento, where he completed his official filing to become governor.
“We’re physically driving all the way to Sacramento to make sure my paperwork is turned in, and turned in properly,” Von Haug said at the outset of the trip.
Once at the state capitol, Von Haug lodged the documentation with the California Secretary of State’s office. “We decided to drive all the way here because they just didn’t have the information in San Bernardino,” Von Haug said via video. “We wanted to make sure there wasn’t any Russians or anything weird messing up our paperwork. We met with the two most helpful people I’ve ever dealt with in the political reform office. We’ve got it all done. It’s all squared away. It’s official and we’re ready to get running.”
Von Haug toured the capitol building, where he filed past the portrait hall of those in whose footsteps he aspires to tread, Peter Burnett (1849-1851), John McDougal (1851-1852), John Bigler (1852-1856), J. Neely Johnson (1856-1858), John Weller (1858-1860), Milton Latham (Jan 9-14, 1860), John Downey (1860-1862), Leland Stanford (1862-1863), Henry Haight (1867-1871), Newton Booth (1871-1875), Romualdo Pacheco (Feb – Dec 1875), William Irwin (1875-1880), George Perkins (1880-1883), George Stoneman (1883-1887), Washington Bartlett (1887-1887), Robert Waterman (1887-1891), Henry Harrison Markham (1891-1895), James Budd (1895-1899), Henry Gage (1899-1903), George Pardee (1903-1907), James Gillett (1907-1911), Hiram Johnson (1911-1917), William Stephens (1917-1923), Friend Richardson (1923-1927), C. C. Young (1927-1931), James Rolph (1931-1934), Frank Merriam (1934-1939), Culbert Olson (1939-1943), Earl Warren (1943-1953), Goodwin Knight (1954-1959), Edmund G. “Pat” Brown (1959-1967), Ronald Reagan (1967-1975), Edmund G. “Jerry” Brown (1975-1983), George Deukmejian (1983-1991), Pete Wilson (1991-1999), Gray Davis (1999-2003), Arnold Schwarzenegger (2003-2011) and Edmund G. “Jerry” Brown (2011-present).
“You have to ask yourself what separates yourself from these others,” Von Haug asked rhetorically as he gazed at the portraits, and then answered, “Nothing. They’re not greater. These men are not better. You better ask somebody. Mavrick 2018,” he said.
The latter part of his statement echoes the slogan of his campaign “Nothing limits you. You better ask somebody.”
Von Haug said, “It’s not about being a Republican or a Democrat or any of the above. It’s about the people of California and what’s right for the people of California.”
Von Haug was a professional mixed martial arts fighter from 1996 until 2007, going undefeated in a string of fights from 1999 until 2006, retiring in 2008. He made a single comeback bout in 2016, and boasts a career record of 8 wins, 5 losses and one draw. He defeated George Alvarez, Shaun Caris, Steale Williams, Ghost Ghost, Ronan Bushnanik, Shannon Ritch twice and John Dale. He lost to Brian Matapua, Giva Santana, Falaniko Vitale, Marcus Gaines and Shannon Ritch in his 2016 comeback rematch.
As an actor, he played Meat in 2013’s “Revelation Road: The Beginning of the End;” reprised Meat for 2013’s “Revelation Road 2: Sea of Glass and Fire;” Nefarius in 2015’s “Do You Believe?;” Mongrel in 2015’s “Dancer and the Dame;” and Circle Face in 2017’s “Boone: The Bounty Hunter.”
He is currently seen on the small screen on “Storage Wars.”
Von Haug appears poised to conduct a campaign that will rely heavily on videos, which he is posting to the internet. In one of those, he took up an issue he intends to explore, expounding his belief that police departments should end their recruitment practice of relying upon the invitation of 20-year-olds into police academies and then installing them as officers at the age of 21. He said he favors hiring officers at a somewhat more advanced age, saying the challenges of functioning within a law enforcement environment require a greater degree of maturity than is typically obtained by someone who has barely achieved the age of majority, who, as he put it, “have never gotten a parking ticket themselves.” He said the long existing current recruitment policy was derived some seven decades ago, when circumstances, including social circumstances, the sophistication of enforcement tools, and the anticipated longevity of officers was much different than at present.
“In this day and age the average life expectancy for a male is in the mid-70s, so I don’t think the kids these days – and I call them kids – have enough life experience or enough time with their feet on the pavement to do the job that policing is requiring now in California. Times have changed. There’s lot of guns. There’s a lot of hate crimes and a lot of things going on. A lot of 21-year-olds have different life experiences, but from my belief, it’s a fact that I don’t think a 21-year-old kid has really experienced enough to be a police officer.”
As a consequence of Von Haug’s effort to move up the political food chain, the Lucerne Valley Unified School District is seeking applicants to fill the position on its board of trustees that he vacated.
The term to which the successful applicant will be appointed, according to district superintendent Peter Livingston, will run until the next regularly scheduled board election in November 2018, at which time the position will be placed on the ballot.
Those interested in filling the board vacancy can obtain an application packet from the Lucerne Valley Unified School District office at 8560 Aliento Road in Lucerne Valley through January 3 or can download one at http://lucernevalleyusd.org. The applications must be filed at the district office by noon on January 4, 2018, and no electronic and/or facsimile applications will be accepted.
The school board will review submitted application packets and then schedule interviews on the morning of January 6 with candidates deemed ahead of time to be qualified to hold the position. The board is reserving the right to not interview any candidates who do not pass initial inspection as was well as the right to not make an appointment of any of the applicants should none be considered qualified for the position.