Los Angeles City Councilman Jose Huizar today took himself out of the running to fill the congressional seat expected to be vacated by Rep. Xavier Becerra’s appointment as state attorney general, while state Assemblyman Jimmy Gomez, D-Los Angeles, threw his hat into the ring.
“After careful consideration and much discussion with my wife Richelle and family, we have decided not to run for the 34th Congressional seat that will soon be vacated by the appointment of Congressman Xavier Becerra to the attorney general position,” Huizar said today. “I will proudly continue as a Los Angeles City Councilmember for the 14th District.”
Gomez, meanwhile, told the Los Angeles Times today that he will run for the seat.
“After talking it over with my family and supporters, I have decided to run for the 34th Congressional seat,” Gomez said, according to the Times. “… Now more than ever, we need strong values-based leadership in Washington that will protect our families, friends and neighbors from divisive rhetoric and policies. I’m ready to stand up and do just that.”
Gomez lives in Eagle Rock and was just elected to his third term in the Legislature.
Former Assembly Speaker John A. Perez declared his intention to run for Becerra’s seat soon after Becerra’s appointment was announced by Gov. Jerry Brown. Perez was appointed a UC Regent by Brown in 2014.
Journalist and activist Wendy Carrillo announced her candidacy today as well. The Boyle Heights resident most recently served as host and executive producer of the public affairs program “Knowledge is Power” on KPWR radio (Power 106).
Other names that have been floated as possible contenders include, Los Angeles City Councilman Gil Cedillo and L.A. Unified School Board Member Monica Garcia, whose name is also being mentioned as a candidate for Cedillo’s or Gomez’ seat should one of those two move on to another office.
Brown appointed Becerra on Thursday to succeed fellow Democrat Kamala Harris, who was elected to the U.S. Senate last month.
If confirmed by the state Senate and Assembly – as expected – Becerra will serve the final two years of Harris’ term and become California’s first Latino attorney general.
A special election would then be held to fill Becerra’s congressional seat.