A union heavyweight has signed on to manage Rep. Pete Stark’s re-election campaign as part of a post-primary staffing shakeup.
Sharon Cornu said Monday she has signed onto the effort to help Stark, D-Fremont, win a 21st term in Congress in the newly drawn 15th Congressional District. Stark is challenged by Dublin councilman and Alameda County prosecutor Eric Swalwell, also a Democrat.
Cornu, 53, of Oakland, served as executive secretary-treasurer of the Alameda Labor Council for almost eight years, with a leave of absence for seven months in 2010 to work as national field director for the AFL-CIO in Washington, D.C. She went to work for Oakland Mayor Jean Quan in January 2011 as a senior policy advisor and in April 2011 as deputy mayor, but resigned from Quan’s administration in November.
Also joining Team Stark is Michael Terris of San Francisco, who will serve as a general consultant. Cornu said Terris got his start in politics as an intern in Stark’s office in 1982, researching Social Security, Medicare and education issues.
Alex Tourk, who had run Stark’s primary campaign, is out of the picture. “Alex Tourk and the congressman made a mutual decision, and the congressman is very grateful for Alex’s help in the primary,” Cornu said Monday.
Stark hasn’t had any problems winning re-election in recent decades, but Swalwell came into the race counting on redistricting – which is forcing Stark to campaign on the east side of the East Bay hills, Swalwell’s home turf – and the top-two primary to buoy his challenge. Stark himself went a long way toward boosting Swalwell’s campaign by making a series of erratic, unfounded allegations this spring against Swalwell and others.
UPDATE @ 3:16 P.M.: Another sign of the increased labor focus of Stark’s re-election effort might be tomorrow’s news conference at Tri-CED Community Recycling in Union City, where Stark will be joined by current Alameda Labor Council Executive Secretary-Treasurer Josie Camacho; Tri-CED CEO and newly appointed Alameda County Supervisor Richard Valle; and local workers. Stark will be highlighting the Bring Jobs Home Act, HR 5542, for which he’s among 36 co-sponsors; the event is part of the AFL-CIO’s Bring Jobs Home campaign. Supporters say the bill would eliminate tax incentives for businesses that send jobs overseas and reward companies that bring jobs back to the U.S.