On the same day long-time Alameda County Supervisor Scott Haggerty announced he will not seek re-election for a sixth term, state Sen. Bob Wieckowski said he will run to replace him next year in the District 1 seat.
Similar to his short three-week run for Congress that concluded last week, Wieckowski did not make an official announcement for his campaign in the March 2020 primary race.
News of his candidacy was first reported by Politico in a tweet Thursday afternoon. Included were two early endorsements of Wieckowski’s campaign by California Lt. Gov. Elena Kounalakis and state Senate Pro Tem Toni Atkins.
Following Wieckowski’s abrupt withdrawal from the race in the 15th Congressional District race potentially left open by Rep. Eric Swalwell’s presidential aspirations, there was widespread speculation as to why the East Bay state senator had made the move at that particular moment.
With Haggerty’s own surprising news Thursday morning that he would not re-election to his Dublin, Livermore, Fremont seat, Wieckowski’s potential path to extending his political career became clear.
Wieckowski is termed out out the state Senate in 2022, and while Congress may have been a preferable office, the race in the 15th District is fraught with uncertainty.
Will Swalwell eventually return to the East Bay and seek re-election to his seat? The answer appears increasingly likely, while the open county supervisor seat will be wide-open and likely place Wieckowski as the early front runner.
The Alameda County supervisorial race now includes Wieckowski and Fremont Councilmember Vinnie Bacon, who had planned on challenging Haggerty in the primary. Bacon announced his campaign last February.
Among the names rumored to be interested in joining the race is former Assemblymember Catharine Baker, a Republican; Ohlone Community College District Trustee Sue Chan, also a former Fremont councilmember; and Fremont Mayor Lily Mei.
It is important to note because the supervisorial contest is a county race–not state or federal–it does not use the top-two jungle primary system. If the winner of the March primary does not win a simple majority, the top two finishers will meet in a November 2020 runoff.