Lots of names continue to circulate in the speculation over who’ll run to succeed Rep. Ellen Tauscher, D-Alamo, if she’s confirmed to a high-ranking State Department post. In chatting with a few people today, someone mentioned the name of Contra Costa County Sheriff Warren Rupf as a possible Republican contender, so I gave him a call.
“I don’t know that I’d be a good partisan politician,” he said, noting that as Sheriff since 1992 and with the department for more than 40 years, he has had to operate in a bipartisan way. (Now, isn’t that exactly what a moderate Republican candidate, looking to overcome the CD-10’s 18-percentage-point Democratic voter registration advantage, would say?)
He’ll not rush into anything, he said. “It’s far and away too important a position, and certainly the issues are so important, that it’s not something that should be entered into for emotional or ego-driven motives.”
Rupf lives in Martinez, which is in Rep. George Miller’s 7th Congressional District. But as I’ve reported, that’s no legal obstacle and might be significantly less of a political problem when the jurisdiction someone has been serving for a long time overlaps significantly with the Congressional district at issue.
Other Republicans mulling a run to succeed Tauscher include 2008 nominee Nicholas Gerber of Moraga and California Republican Party Vice Chairman Tom Del Beccaro of Lafayette. I also spoke today with 2006 GOP nominee Darcy Linn; she said she’s not considering a special-election run, and she believes Del Beccaro is the strongest GOP candidate.
On the Democratic side, state Sen. Mark DeSaulnier, D-Concord, already has the blessing of Assemblyman Tom Torlakson, D-Antioch, who decided to stay with his campaign for Superintendent of Public Instruction in 2010. Other possibilities include Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan, D-Alamo; former Assemblyman Joe Canciamilla, D-Pittsburg; Contra Costa County Board of Supervisors Chairwoman Susan Bonilla; former BART director and former PG&E executive Dan Richard of Walnut Creek; and former Lafayette Mayor Scott Talan. Watch for any or all to get involved in the domino effect as some run for CD-10, and some run for the seat the new Congressmember vacates, and so on and so on.
I’ll be on KQED-TV/Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California” to talk about CD-10 at 7:30 p.m. tonight.