Long Beach Councilwoman Wins Seat in California State Senate

Lena Gonzalez led the field of 12 candidates in the March 26 primary election, leading up to the June 4 special election

Long Beach Councilwoman Lena Gonzalez is expected to be sworn in to the state Senate this month after a landslide victory over Cudahy Councilman Jack Guerrero in a special election to fill the vacant 33rd Senate District seat.

Gonzalez, a Democrat, received 69 percent of the vote to 31 percent for Guerrero, a Republican, according to semioffical results released Wednesday by the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk.

Gonzalez led the field of 12 candidates in the March 26 primary election, earning about 30 percent of the vote. Guerrero was second with 15 percent.

Because no candidate received more than 50 percent of the vote, the top two finishers in the race advanced to Tuesday's runoff.

The special election was prompted by Ricardo Lara's election as state insurance commissioner.

Gonzalez, 38, says she led the fight for higher-paying jobs in Long Beach and want to continue working to strengthen the Port of Long Beach and fight to ensure the district receives its "fair share" of affordable-housing funding.

She also named environmental protection, education, safer neighborhoods and affordable healthcare as hallmarks of her campaign.

Guerrero, 44, touts his work in the public and private sectors, along with his Stanford and Harvard educational background. He said he is committed to eliminating corruption in local governments, addressing the state's unfunded pension liability, overhauling the state's education system and making California more business-friendly.

Guerrero said the state needs to reduce "excessive taxation across the board."

The 33rd Senate District includes Bell Gardens, Bell, Signal Hill, South Gate, Paramount, Vernon, Lynwood, Maywood, Huntington Park and Cudahy, along with a large portion of Long Beach.

Copyright CNS - City News Service
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