SANTA ANA (AP) — The changing face of Orange County helped Democrat Loretta Sanchez win an upset election to Congress 14 years ago as Latinos arrived as a political force.

Now, a rise in Vietnamese-American political clout has her fighting to keep her seat.

READ MORE: Lakers Handle Celtics 117-102, Split Rivalry For Season

Sanchez recently injected the thorny issue of race into the campaign for California’s 47th Congressional district when she said in a Spanish-language television interview that “the Vietnamese and Republicans” were trying to take her seat.

READ MORE: Retired Judge To Investigate Claims Riverside County Failed To Protect Turpin Children After They Were Freed

Vietnamese-American state Assemblyman Van Tran called the remarks a “racial rampage.”

The majority of the district is Hispanic and Democrat. But Latinos have a lower turnout rate than Vietnamese-Americans and Democrats will likely be hurt this year by anti-incumbent sentiment.

MORE NEWS: Family Mourn Teenager Shot And Killed Near Boyle Heights Recreation Center

(© Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)