Bill Lockyer endorses Eric Swalwell for re-elction

Lest you think Rep. Mike Honda’s 17th Congressional District is the only Bay Area race where incumbents are trying to get an early leg up on their challengers, Rep. Eric Swalwell fired a shot across his challenger’s bow Monday morning.

Swalwell, D-Pleasanton, announced he has the endorsement of state Treasurer Bill Lockyer for re-election to his 15th Congressional District seat.

“I’m for Congressman Eric Swalwell because I’ve seen him bring great energy and smart thinking to his job, and the determination to listen well to the people and work very hard for them every day,” Lockyer said in Swalwell’s news release. “Eric is getting good things done in Washington and at home, he has earned another term in Congress, and his re-election will be good news for his district and the nation.”

Lockyer’s endorsement is significant not only because he’s the longest serving statewide elected official, but also because he’s a powerful figure in Alameda County politics – particularly in the areas where Swalwell’s challenger, state Sen. Ellen Corbett, runs strongest.

Corbett, D-San Leandro, is looking to her home base on the west side of the hills for strength, but Lockyer’s word could carry significant sway there: He served many of the same areas during his 25 years in the Legislature that Corbett now does. He lives in Hayward now, but started his career in elected office (in 1968!) as a San Leandro Unified School District board member. Corbett as a college student did an internship in then-Assemblyman Lockyer’s office; he spoke at Corbett’s Senate swearing-in ceremony in 2007.

Eric SwalwellSwalwell said he’s honored to have Lockyer’s support.

“He has always been a fierce defender of his constituents and committed to improving the lives of the middle class and those less fortunate,” Swalwell said. “I admire Treasurer Lockyer’s unwavering commitment to his Democratic ideals while also working toward compromise if it will benefit the people. He has provided steady stewardship of California’s finances as Treasurer and I share his priorities to improve our economy and responsibly manage the people’s money.”

Josh Richman

Josh Richman covers state and national politics for the Bay Area News Group. A New York City native, he earned a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and reported for the Express-Times of Easton, Pa. for five years before coming to the Oakland Tribune and ANG Newspapers in 1997. He is a frequent guest on KQED Channel 9’s “This Week in Northern California;” a proud father; an Eagle Scout; a somewhat skilled player of low-stakes poker; a rather good cook; a firm believer in the use of semicolons; and an unabashed political junkie who will never, EVER seek elected office.

  • Elwood

    If Lockyer really wanted to help Swalwell he should have told him “I’ll endorse either you or your opponent, whichever you think would help you more”.

  • JohnW


  • Marga

    I don’t believe endorsements matter at all to voters, specially for Congressional elections. And Bill Lockyer’s endorsement, in particular, is less than powerful in the wake of his family scandals.
    More interesting is speculating about the reason why Lockyer is actually endorsing Swalwell, I’m sure it has nothing to do with who will do the best job in DC.

  • RRSenileColumnist

    There’s a rumor Toronto’s Rob Ford will endorse Bill Lockyer for governor.

  • SactoSteve

    Rob’s more the Tea Party type.

  • SactoSteve

    Lockyer is an honorable public servant who has served our state with distinction for years.

    Based on his record and Swalwell’s, I’m sure the endorsement has everything to do with who will do the best job in DC.

    I’m speculating about why you are attacking Lockyer when he isn’t running. Maybe just sour grapes because he didn’t endorse your candidate?

  • Marga

    You forgot the /s

  • Elwood

    Steve, do you believe in fairies too?

  • True — Bill Lockyer’s singular endorsement doesn’t matter to voters per se.

    But this just becomes part of a larger narrative of Congressman Swalwell doing what’s necessary — running twice as hard as he did in ’12 — to earn reelection in ’14.

    If Ellen Corbett could manage to run a barely competent campaign, then perhaps @SLtalk:disqus would be correct that endorsements don’t matter to voters. But momentum matters, and, without question, Swalwell’s movin’ and groovin’.