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California Legislature

Former Assemblywoman Ling Ling Chang plans to challenge Sen. Josh Newman if recall measure qualifies

Former Assemblywoman Ling Ling Chang (R-Diamond Bar) plans a rematch against Sen. Josh Newman (D-Fullerton) if a recall measure qualifies for the ballot. None
Former Assemblywoman Ling Ling Chang (R-Diamond Bar) plans a rematch against Sen. Josh Newman (D-Fullerton) if a recall measure qualifies for the ballot.

After losing a close race last year for the state Senate, former Republican Assemblywoman Ling Ling Chang said Friday that she plans a rematch against Democratic Sen. Josh Newman of Fullerton if pending petitions qualify a recall measure for the ballot.

Chang, a Diamond Bar resident, lost to Newman by less than 1% of the vote last year, and said she thinks he is vulnerable because of the recall drive by Republicans critical of his vote for a gas-tax increase.

Chang noted that she voted to stop tax increases during her two years in the Assembly.

“By contrast, Josh Newman voted to raise gas and car taxes by $52 billion and increased the cost of living for the average [Senate District] 29 family by $300 a year,” Chang said in a statement. “I’m running for state Senate and support the recall because we can’t afford three more years of Josh Newman.”

The California Republican Party has turned in more than 100,000 signatures to put a recall measure on the ballot, while 63,500 of them have to be verified as district voters for the measure to qualify.

If the measure qualifies, voters will be asked to answer whether Newman should be recalled and which candidate should replace him if the recall passes.

Chang's name and others, including Republican Fullerton Mayor Bruce Whitaker, would be on the ballot as candidates to fill the Senate seat.

Newman campaign spokesman Mike Roth responded: "This is political opportunism to the extreme - just 8 months after voters fired Ms. Chang she's betting her political future on them believing the bucket of lies they've been fed about the recall."

Updated at 6:20 pm to include a comment from Mike Roth. 

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