Mayor Garcia Files Sac'to Paperwork To Collect Campaign Contribs To Run For Lt. Governor in 2026; Action Tacitly Signals He'll Seek Third Term As Mayor In 2022, Avoiding Previous Third-Term Write-In Req't He Erased With His "Good Gov't" BBB Charter Amendment
|(August 6, 2019, 2:55 p.m.) -- Mayor Robert Garcia has filed Sacramento paperwork including a Form 410 "Statement of Organization" enabling him to begin collecting campaign contributions to run for Lt. Governor in 2026.
UPDATE: Garcia's 2026 Lt. Gov. committee timely filed its Form 410 on August 5 and it indicates the committee reached its "filing threshold" [receiving at least $2,000 in contributions] on August 1, 2019. [end UPDATE]
CA's current Lt. Governor (Eleni Kounalakis) was elected to her first of two allowed terms in 2018, meaning her second term would expire in 2026. CA's immediate previous Lt. Governor was Gavin Newsom (elected Governor in 2018.)
By filing paperwork for Lt. Governor in 2026, Garcia simultaneously signals LB campaign contributors (and potential LB opponents) that Garcia presumably plans to seek and raise money for a third term as Mayor in 2022, (an action that might deter some contributors to possible opponents. Although Garcia can't legally form a committee to begin collecting those sums until 2021, that's politically irrelevant, since he's signaled that he plans to seek re-election in 2022 unless other events intervene; it accomplishes the same goal of chilling potential contributors to 2022 opponents.)
In 2022, Garcia would benefit from Charter Amendment BBB (that he and City Auditor Laura Doud portrayed as a "good government" measure closing a "loophole") that erased LB's former write-in requirement for incumbent Mayors/Councilmembers seeking third terms. With BBB now in place, Council incumbents Dee Andrews and Al Austin are avoiding the former write-in requirement in seeking re-election in March 2020 and Garcia will avoid the write-in requirement in 2022.
Other speculated scenarios abound, as Garcia's 2026 Lt. Governor Committee title also may not tell the full story. Under state law, Garcia can subsequently create another committee to run for Lt. Governor in 2022 or some other state office by simply contributing sums from his "2026 Lt. Governor" committee to another future committee he creates (including a 2022 Mayoral campaign, which he can't legally created until 2021.)
Other political events may intervene. Some have speculated Garcia might accept a future appointment by Governor Newsom or run for Congress if incumbent Cong. Lowenthal steps down or perhaps receive an appointive DC position if a Democrat (including his presidential candidate endorsee Sen. Kamala Harris) is elected president in 2020.
[Scroll down for further.]
Garcia was re-elected in April 2018 after a deadline-filing-day meeting with then-contemplating-Mayoral candidate Robert Fox after which Mr. Fox chose not to enter the Mayoral race (leaving Garcia without a major recognizable citywide opponent.) (Mr. Fox is now seeking to unseat 2nd dist. incumbent Jeannine Pearce in LB's 2nd Council district.)
In late May 2018, Mayor Garcia (safely re-elected in April) unveiled four Charter Amendments, one of which (Measure BBB, dubbed a "good government" measure by Garcia, opposed by LB's Reform Coalition) that enable him and other Mayor/Council incumbents to seek third terms without facing a write-in requirement. (Mayor Garcia, assisted by City Auditor Doud and others including "CA Common Cause," portrayed BBB as "closing a loophole" in LB's voter approved term limits law.)
Following a campaign run by Garcia that significantly outspent LB's Reform Coalition, LB voters approved Measure BBB in November 2018. As a result, two LB Council incumbents, (Dee Andrews and Al Austin) are now using BBB to seek re-election in March 2020 without facing the former write-in requirement...and Mayor Garcia will likewise be able to avoid a write-in requirement if/when he (presumably) seeks re-election for Mayor in 2022.
Two Council incumbents, Rex Richardson and Suzie Price had been speculated candidates for Mayor in 2022; both supported Measure BBB (which also allows themselves to seek third terms without a write-in requirements if they seek to seek re-election it in 2022.)
Further to follow.
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