Less than two days after Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan lost her primary bid for the 10th Congressional District, the California Republican Party signaled its intent to target her 2010 re-election campaign in a strongly worded press release.
The party criticized her on a variety of fronts including her yes vote on last week’s prison reform bill, and said her fourth-place finish in the Congressional race among the 14 candidates means she is vulnerable. She garnered only 12 percent of the vote despite loaning her campaign $850,000 of her own money.
The Republicans desperately want to reclaim Assembly District 15. Until Buchanan beat Republican and San Ramon Mayor Abram Wilson in 2008, it was the party’s sole claim to a partisan elected seat in the nine-county Bay Area.
On the other hand, the high-profile Congressional primary has increased Buchanan’s name identification and her visibility. That won’t hurt her in 2010. And while she lost, she wasn’t alone. State Sen. Mark DeSaulnier of Concord went down to defeat, too.
Read on for the full press release:The following was issued today (Sept. 3) by California Assembly Republican Political Director Kevin Spillane:
Joan Buchanan Loses Badly While Voting Badly
Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan was narrowly elected after campaigning as a moderate fiscal conservative committed to her district. But she’s voted very differently while quickly deserting the 15th Assembly District to run as a liberal candidate for Congress.
And Buchanan’s constituents clearly aren’t impressed with her performance. Buchanan apparently didn’t even carry her own Assembly seat while coming in a weak 4th-place in Tuesday’s 10th CD special election.
What makes Buchanan’s low vote total all the more striking is that the Assemblywoman poured what the Contra Costa Times called a “staggering” $750,000 of her own money into the congressional campaign. She raised only $94,000 from other individuals for her congressional race – another sign of political weakness.
Buchanan’s lack of support isn’t surprising given that there is a great deal for Buchanan’s constituents not to support.
First, Buchanan cast a key vote for the largest tax increase in state history.
Then, after only a few short months in office, Buchanan abandoned her district during the state’s unprecedented fiscal crisis to run for Congress. She was brazen in putting her own personal ambition over serving her constituents.
Buchanan followed that up by campaigning for a government-run single payer health care system – supported by liberal Democratic primary voters – but very unpopular with the swing voters of the affluent and suburban 15th Assembly District.
Just this week, Buchanan cast the deciding vote for the corrections legislation that will result in the early release of up to 30,000 criminals in the next two years.
Assemblywoman Buchanan’s political self-destruction will be complete in 2010 as the voters of the 15th Assembly District remind her they don’t like to be misled or taken for granted. They can be counted on to once again reject Buchanan and turn her out of the office she’s already indicated she doesn’t want.