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Pombo speaks at Wednesday press conference

By Lisa Vorderbrueggen
Friday, November 10th, 2006 at 9:41 am in congressional district 11.

I’ve posted a story below that didn’t make it into our print paper due to a communication glitch on Wednesday. (We probably ought to have a formal name for what happens the morning after the election, something like Post-Election Sleep Deprivation Disorder.)

I have had a few inquiries from folks who wanted to know if Rep. Richard Pombo, R-Tracy, conceded the election to Democrat Jerry McNerney of Pleasanton or if the congressman called the victor.

Yes, he held a press conference in Tracy on Wednesday afternoon and wished McNerney luck. The men never spoke although Pombo tried to call McNerney’s cell phone on Wednesday. As you might imagine, McNerney’s phone rang nonstop that day

Here’s the story that Alameda Newspaper Group reporter Paul Burgarino wrote:

TRACY — Flanked by solemn-faced campaign workers and family still surprised about election results, a subdued Richard Pombo wished luck to Congressman-elect Jerry McNerney Wednesday.

Dressed in jeans, button-down shirt and cowboy boots, the seven-term congressman once again turned rancher talked to the press outside of a Tracy storefront.

Pombo said he had tried to call McNerney several times, but had not reached him yet.

“I just wanted to come out here and wish the Congressman-elect from the 11th District, Jerry McNerney, congratulations on his victory,” he said, adding he would work on the transition of issues he had worked on to McNerney’s office, including transportation and economic
development.

“It was a hard fought campaign down to the end and I wish him luck, it will be interesting, there’s a lot going on,” he said.

Congressional activity that would affect the 11th District in the next two years included $100 million in transportation projects, building of infrastructure and a $2 billion farm bill next year, he
said.

At the press conference, Pombo was asked if he took the Pleasanton wind consultant’s candidacy seriously.

“We took it seriously and knew it would a national race, (a lot of groups) spent a lot of money on this race,” he said “It didn’t change what I did, but I think I was caught in the wave that was
coming across the country.”

Pombo also said that the 11th Congressional District is a split district, and that one of the challenges McNerney will face is the difference in economies.

“If there’s any advice I would give, it’s stick to the things he believes in and fight for them,” he said. “ I hope he does a great job representing my district, this is my home, my family’s been here for four generations, this is what I care about.”

As for his future plans, Pombo said he never left being a rancher.

“I’m going to go home, I still have responsibilities for next couple onths and I’ll do as much as possibly can,” he said.

As for trying to get his seat back in 2008 ?

“I have no idea, don’t even ask me that right now, especially in front of my wife,” he said.

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