Los Alamitos voters on Tuesday welcomed back a former mayor who was forced to resign after making national headlines in 2009 for forwarding an email depicting a watermelon patch on the front lawn of the White House.
Former Los Alamitos mayor Dean Grose, a local businessman, was elected to serve four more years, clinching one of two spots on the city dais, according to the Orange County Registrar of Voters.
The vote is a remarkable affirmation for Grose, who faced national scorn three years ago for the email sent in the wake of Obama’s election as the nation’s first black president.
He had forwarded the email—a cartoon captioned "No Easter egg hunt this year"—to a local volunteer, triggering a public outcry for his resignation. Despite the scandal, he remained active in the community and recently called on voters to accept his apology and “move on.”
“As we go through life, we also do things, some things, we later regret,” Grose told voters at a recent candidates forum. “That particular instant I received a cartoon, laughed and thought it was cute and forwarded it on to a couple of friends. I didn’t understand at the time the impact that it would have. I understand that now, I have a great deal more sensitivity than I did at that particular point ... I have apologized to my colleagues that were on the council at the time and also the community.”
“It’s time to move on,“ he added. “There are some folks in the community that believe that’s not possible. I do. We’ll let the voters make that decision.”
Grose could not be reached for comment Monday night.