There was something a little fishy in North San Jose’s City Council office late last year. Vietnamese media mogul Manh Nguyen trounced Tim Orozco in a special election last summer to fill the District 4 seat, which covers Berryessa. It was an unusual race, as Nguyen was accused of having multiple wives and living out of the district, while Orozco had to answer questions about multiple drunk driving convictions. Due to term cycles, Nguyen already has to defend his seat this year and the two could square off again, although no challengers have yet to announce their candidacy. After moving into City Hall, however, Nguyen’s office has set the benchmark for odd behavior on the 18th floor. He has had at least six people leave the office in less than six months, in part because the councilman preferred to hire only part-time workers. Nguyen apparently does this not only to test new employees’ abilities, but also because he wants to ensure staff has time to volunteer on his campaign. Longtime office administrator Margie Espinoza, who worked in the D4 office before Chuck Reed became mayor, didn’t get that chance, though, as was pushed out because of her costly salary—outgoing council member and now State Assemblyman Kansen Chu boosted her pay as a parting gift. Staff volunteering for campaigns is nothing new, but sources say there’s been pressure on some employees to take leaves of absence to work full time to get Nguyen re-elected. The councilman’s closest advisers, Jonathan Padilla and Bryan Do, say that’s not true, but they’re both currently volunteering at the moment. Padilla will return to the office next month, but Do—who often popped up on the 18th floor last year unannounced, a la Kramer from Seinfeld—has never been employed by the councilman’s office or campaign. And yet, somehow, he’s also never made an appearance on Nguyen’s calendar.