Former airline pilot Steve Filson, who dropped out of the Assembly District 15 Democratic field a few days ago, is now contemplating a run for Contra Costa County supervisor.
“We haven’t made a decision yet,” Filson said via telephone. “We’re making some contacts and we’re in the process of due diligence right now.”
Assembly District 15 is a sprawling district that includes portions of four counties, including Contra Costa, Alameda, San Joaquin and Sacramento. The incumbent, Guy Houston, terms out this year.
The filing deadline is March 7, so Filson doesn’t have much time to make up his mind.
Filson wouldn’t start totally from scratch, though. He has a campaign manager from his Assembly effort and had $38,000 in his state campaign account on Dec. 31, 2007.
But if he says yes, Filson will be a late-comer to a race that shot out of the starting gate months ago when Houston announced his plans to challenge Supervisor Mary Nejedly Piepho. They have already raised thousands of dollars.
As the field’s only Democrat, Filson has an advantage: If the two Republicans split the vote, Filson could emerge as either the outright winner or position himself for a November run-off. (In the supervisor contest, the candidate who receives 50 percent plus one of the vote in June wins the seat outright. If no candidate wins a majority, the top two vote-getters will participate in a run-off in November.)
It’s not an entirely far-fetched theory.
Houston’s decision to run against Piepho, his former aide and the woman he advised to run for the supervisor job in 2004, ignited a firestorm among some Republicans.
Some members of the party consider Houston’s decision to run against a fellow Republican a traitorous and opportunistic move while other high-profile Republicans, including Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger and Sheriff Warren Rupf, have endorsed Houston.
Yes, I know that supervisor seats are nonpartisan but let’s be honest, the parties view these posts as part of their farm teams.