Assembly candidates stake out new districts

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Elections for seats in the state Legislature won’t take place until June, but thanks to the recent redrawing of political districts, many candidates are already running hard.

Venice activist Marta Evry is urging freshman Assemblywoman Betsy Butler (D-Marina del Rey) to stay in the South Bay for a rematch with Republican Nathan Mintz of Redondo Beach in the new — and competitive — 66th Assembly District. But Butler plans to run in the new Westside-based 50th District, where Democrat Torie Osborn already has racked up several endorsements, including that of L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. Santa Monica Mayor Richard Bloom is also said to be interested in the race.

Charter school administrator Brian C. Johnson, a Democrat, recently announced that he had raised more than $235,000 in his campaign to replace termed-out Assemblyman Mike Feuer (D-Los Angeles) in the new 46th District. Also already in the race are attorney Andrew Lachman and businesswoman Laurette Healey, both Democrats.


Union activist Jimmy Gomez, a Democrat in Echo Park, has reported raising more than $200,000 and garnered labor and political leader endorsements in his run for the new 51st Assembly District. He hopes to replace termed-out Assemblyman Gil Cedillo (D-Los Angeles), as do Democrats Arturo Chavez, an aide to Cedillo, and Luis Lopez, co-chairman of the Silver Lake Neighborhood Council.

Carson City Councilman Mike Gipson, a Democrat, recently announced his candidacy for the Assembly seat in the new 64th District. Plans to run for Assembly in the new 49th District have been announced by El Monte Union High School board Member John Tran, a Democrat. Democrats Luis Ayala, legislative director for the Los Angeles County Medical Assn., and Ed Chau also are raising money for campaigns in the district, along with the nonpartisan Henry Lo, a Garvey School District board member. Chau, a member of the Montebello Unified School District board, attorney and judge pro tem, and the others are hoping to replace termed-out Assemblyman Mike Eng (D-Monterey Park).

For the record, 7 p.m. Sept. 6: An earlier version of this post incorrectly said Arturo Chavez is an aide to state Sen. Kevin De Leon (D-Los Angeles). Chavez is an aide to Assemblyman Gil Cedillo (D-Los Angeles.

For the record, 11:30 a.m. Sept. 7: An earlier version of this post incorrectly said Luis Lopez is co-chair of the Silver Lake Neighborhood Council. He is former co-chair of that group and now is president of the East Area Planning Commission for the city of Los Angeles.

-- Jean Merl