Rutherford Offers Ambrozic A Political Hand Up With Lake Arrowhead MAC Appointment

Second District San Bernardino County Supervisor Janice Rutherford has chosen Michelle Ambrozic, who unsuccessfully vied for election as 33rd District Assemblywoman last year, to replace David Caine on the Lake Arrowhead Municipal Advisory Council.
Like Rutherford, Ambrozic is a Republican. A health insurance broker, Ambrozic used her knowledge of the health industry to formulate part of her platform in the heavily Republican-leaning 33rd District, where Jay Obernolte ultimately emerged victorious to claim a seat in the lower legislative house in Sacramento in 2014. Her campaign included attacks on Democrats in the form of heavy criticism of President Barack Obama and the Federal Affordable Care Act, which she referred to as Obamacare.
Ambrozic was guided in her Assembly bid by Greg Imus, who acted as her campaign manager. Imus had successfully guided Tim Donnelly to victory in 2010, when he ran for the Assembly in the 33rd District. Imus then came very close to being elected to Congress in his own right, qualifying for the run-off election in the overwhelmingly Republican 8th Congressional District in 2012 against the eventual winner, Paul Cook, another Republican.
Imus’s influence on Ambrozic’s political strategy was in evidence last year. As the co-founder of the Minuteman Civil Defense Corporation of California, which advocates heavily in favor of Second Amendment rights, Imus put Ambrozic’s 2012 candidacy for Assembly into high gear by means of campaign signs which depicted a silhouette of the candidate firing a high powered automatic rifle.
Rutherford’s promotion of Ambrozic, a Lake Arrowhead resident, to the municipal advisory post signals the supervisor’s willingness to keep Ambrozic in the spotlight, providing her with name repetition and name recognition, perhaps advancing her political ambition.
Rutherford, a former Fontana councilwoman, was first elected Second District supervisor in 2010. She was reelected in 2014. Under the county’s term limits put in place as a consequence of Measure P passed by the voters in 2006, supervisors are limited to three four-year terms.
Though her post on the Lake Arrowhead Municipal Advisory Board will potentially strengthen Ambrozic politically, she is not likely to garner wide attention throughout the Second District, which counts as its major population centers the northern portion of Upland, all of Rancho Cucamonga and the west half of Fontana. Ambrozic, who enjoys some notoriety in the San Bernardino Mountains and the First District’s Victor Vally, would need greater name recognition in the western portion of the Second District to successfully challenge Rutherford. If Rutherford chooses to run again and is successful, she would not leave the board until 2022. Nevertheless, she might be grooming Ambrozic as her successor. Ambrozic, 33, is relatively young and would be 40 in 2022, three years younger than Rutherford was when she defeated incumbent Paul Biane five years ago.
By aligning herself with Ambrozic, Rutherford, 48, strengthens herself by creating even stronger connections with elements of the GOP identifying themselves as social, Constitutional and fiscal conservatives than she already enjoys.

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