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    State Senator Jenny Oropeza (Former Ass'ywoman/LB Councilwoman) Enters Congressional Race To Succeed Rep. Millender-McDonald

    (May 2, 2007) -- At a May 2 press event overlooking the Alameda Corridor in Compton, State Senator Jenny Oropeza announced that she will seek the Congressional seat now vacant following the death of Rep. Juanita Millender-McDonald (D., Carson).
    Oropeza 07 Cong announcement May 2/07
    Sen. Oropeza alongside husband Tom Mullins, sister Lynne Oropeza and niece Alisha. Photo source: Oropeza campaign

    Senator Oropeza, a former LB-Carson Assemblywoman, LB City Councilwoman and LBUSD School Board member, called Cong. Millender-McDonald "someone we regarded as a mentor, role model and a friend"...and speaking as a cancer survivor herself said her "heart goes out to her family friends and the community she so ably served." posts the text of Sen. Oropeza's remarks as prepared for delivery [which we're told were closely followed].

    We are all deeply saddened by the event that has brought me here today.

    Iím talking about the untimely passing of an outstanding public servant and someone we regarded as a mentor, role model and a friend.

    As a cancer survivor, my heart goes out to her family, friends and to the community she so able served.

    As a City Council member, state legislator and member of Congress, she fought for us all.

    God speed, Juanita Millender McDonald. You will be missed.

    During this is time of sadness, we all recognize that this is a unique moment in American history.

    After six years of George Bushís incompetence and misrule, America is ready to move in a new direction.

    A new direction that will provide jobs and economic security to working communities -- not massive tax reductions for the wealthy.

    A new direction that will support and strengthen our public schools and empower teachers -- not cripple them with bureaucratic federal micromanagement and scapegoating.

    A new direction that puts the health care of our citizens before the bloated profits of the pharmaceutical industry.

    A new direction that tackles the massive environmental issues that threaten our health and planet -- rather than one that supplants science with oil company fairy tales.

    And finally, a new direction in diplomacy that makes our nation safer and stronger by building international cooperation and mutual respect -- not one that regards military force as our only option.

    You can count on me to work with our Democratic leadership to bring our unfortunate military misadventure in Iraq to a quick and honorable resolution.

    Since the 1980s, I have worked to serve this community as a locally elected school board member, locally elected city council member, locally elected state Assembly member and now as a locally elected state Senator.

    In each of those positions I worked to bring people together to solve common problems.

    You can count on me to bring that same leadership to the United States Congress.

    You can count on me to be a part of this new direction for America.

    You know that I know this district.

    You know that I have served every community at nearly every level of government.

    You know I can be a strong voice in the House of Representatives.

    You know I can be your advocate on trade and transportation, on health and the environment; and on defense and security issues involving our local ports.

    You know that I know our local schools and that I will respond to their concerns.

    You know I know local government and you know I have a proven history of bringing state and federal governments together to tackle our biggest community problems.

    And you know I have a unique blend of experience, dedication and effective leadership that will make me an excellent member, on your behalf, in the House of Representatives.

    Together, letís move forward.

    The 37th Congressional district (lines redrawn by Sac'to Dems in 2001) stretches from Willowbrook to ELB. The Dem approved lines erased the LB district held by Rep. Steve Horn (R., LB-Downey), effectively adding roughly 80% of LB to a formerly Carson-centered district held by Congresswoman Millender-McDonald.

    In Nov. 2006, after six years in the state Assembly, Oropeza sought and won the State Senate seat (lines likewise drawn by state Dems) stretching from PV through several southbay cities.

    When then-Assemblywoman Oropeza was elected to the State Senate, LB Councilwoman Laura Richardson was elected to the Oropeza's former Assembly seat. From 2000-2006, Richardson represented central LB's 6th Council district. On May 1, Assemblywowan Richardson announced that she's also entering the U.S. Congressional race.

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