Orange County is a county in the U.S. state of California. Its county seat is Santa Ana. As of the 2010 census, its population was 3,010,232, making it the third most populous county in California, behind Los Angeles County and San Diego County and the second most populous in the Greater Los Angeles Area after Los Angeles County. It is the sixth most populous county in the United States as of 2009 while at the same time is the smallest area-wise county in Southern California, being roughly half the size of the next smallest county, Ventura. The county is famous for its tourism, as the home of such attractions as Disneyland and Knott’s Berry Farm, as well as several beaches along its more than 40 miles (64 km) of coastline. It is known for its affluence and political conservatism – a 2005 academic study listed three Orange County cities as being among America’s 25 “most conservative,” making it one of two counties in the country containing more than one such city (Maricopa County, Arizona also has three cities on the list).
Orange County was at the time the largest US county to have gone bankrupt, when in 1994 longtime treasurer Robert Citron’s investment strategies left the county with inadequate capital to allow for any raise in interest rates for its trading positions. When the residents of Orange County voted down a proposal to raise taxes in order to balance the budget, bankruptcy followed soon after. Citron later pleaded guilty to six felonies regarding the matter.