CD10: Candidate forum set for Aug. 7

The Contra Costa Council and the Bay Area Council, an association of primarily businesses, will host a forum on Aug. 7 for the Democratic and Republican candidates in the Sept. 1 special election to replace former Congresswoman Ellen Tauscher.

The five Democrats and six Republicans who have filed for the seat have been invited to participate.

Under special election rules, the top vote-getter in each party will advance to the Nov. 3 special general election unless one candidate receives 50 percent plus one vote. In the event that a single candidate receives a plurality of the vote, he or she will win the seat outright. But given the large number of candidates in the field, it is unlikely that a winner will emerge in the special primary election.

The forum begins at 7:30 a.m. at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, 45 John Glenn Dr. in Concord. Contra Costa Times political writer and columnist Lisa Vorderbrueggen will moderate.

The breakfast forum is open to the public. For reservations, call 925-246-1880 or download the registration form at www.contracostacouncil.com.  The cost is $35 for members and $45 for nonmembers.

Participating candidates will be encouraged to remain after the event to provide additional opportunity to speak with attendees.

Sponsors of the event include Chevron, AAA of No. California, Nevada and Utah, Safeway and The Mechanics Bank.

For a complete list of candidates on the Sept. 1 ballot, read on.


Joan Buchanan of Alamo

Assemblywoman, District 15

Web site: http://www.joanbuchanan.com/

Mark DeSaulnier of Concord

State Senator, District 7

Web site: http://www.markdesaulnierforcongress.com/

John Garamendi of Walnut Grove

California Lieutenant Governor

Web site: http://www.garamendi.org/

Adriel Hampton of Dublin

San Francisco City Attorney’s Office investigator

Web site: http://www.adrielhampton.com/

Anthony Woods of Fairfield

Former economic analyst with Booz Allen Hamilton

Web site: http://www.anthonywoodsforcongress.com/home.html


Chris Bunch of Fairfield

Building contractor

Web site: http://www.bunch4congress.com

Gary Clift of Vacaville

Retired peace officer and manager for the California Department of Corrections

Web site: http://www.cliftforcongress.com/

David Harmer of Dougherty Valley

Former vice president and in-house counsel, Washington Mutual Bank

Web site: http://www.harmerforcongress.com/

Mark Loos of Livermore

Owner, PC Solutions

Web site: http://www.loosforchange.com/

David Peterson of Walnut Creek

Accountability system owner

Web site: http://www.davidpetersonforcongress.com

John Toth of Pleasant Hill


Web site: (it was not yet live as of today) http://www.johntothforcongress.com/


Jeremy Cloward of Pleasant Hill

College instructor, Diablo Valley Community College

Web site: http://www.jeremycloward.com/


Mary McIlroy of El Cerrito

Former office worker

Web site: http://www.peaceandfreedom.org/home/mcilroy-for-congress


Jerome Denham of Walnut Creek

Insurance agent

Web site: http://www.freedomcoalition.com

Lisa Vorderbrueggen

  • I thank you for listing all the candidates.

    Though, is the August 7th forum only open to major party candidates?

    If so, I think the article should have made more clear that some candidates were excluded.

    Also, I hope that the councils will reconsider.

    Third party candidates matter. Third party voters matter.

    Kimberly Wilder

  • Lisa Vorderbrueggen

    Ms. Wilder,

    The forums are open only to the major party candidates on the Aug. 7 Contra Costa Council forum and the Aug. 11 Saint Mary’s College round-table because they are the only two parties with challengers in the Sept. 1 special primary.

    As you probably know, this is a special primary, which means that all candidates regardless of party affiliation will appear on the same ballot. The top vote-getter in each party will advance to the Nov. 3 special general election.

    Granted, the rules also say that if a candidate receives a majority of the vote in the primary, he or she will win the seat outright. But given the large number of Democrats (five) and Republicans (six) that is very unlikely to occur.

    As a result, the three minor party candidates who have no primary challengers within their parties will advance to the Nov. 3 general election.

    After the primary is over, the community groups will undoubtedly seek to hold forums with the candidates competing in the Nov. 3 election.