Sam Blakeslee gets an opponent

May 4, 2010

The August special election to fill the state Senate seat of Abel Maldonado heated up Monday when Democrat John Laird announced his candidacy. [Tribune]

Laird, 60, a UC Santa Cruz environmental studies professor and former state assemblyman, will face Republican Sam Blakeslee of San Luis Obispo in August, an election prompted by Maldonado’s recent elevation to lieutenant governor.

“Sam went to Sacramento to be a good Republican moderate, and he took a hard turn to the right,” Laird said of his opponent.

The 15th Senate District includes parts of Santa Barbara, San Luis Obispo, Monterey, Santa Cruz, and Santa Clara counties. Laird served three terms in Sacramento, from 2002 to 2008, before being forced out by term limits.

Laird made his announcement at Rio Del Mar State Beach in Aptos. In his remarks, Laird called for the creation of new jobs, protection of the environment by expanding green technology, and a return of public education to  a “prominence it once had.”

Laird, one of the first openly gay men to serve in the Legislature, said the 82 laws he had signed into law shows that he is able and willing to work in a bipartisan manner.

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If Blakeslee ran unopposed, ie received 50% +1 of the votes cast in the special primary, would that then remove the need for the second special election? This would save, by Rodewald’s estimates, $225,000 in special election costs.

How come we are not getting our dander up and saying unkind things about Laird who is going to cost our cash-strapped county all this bread? If there is any truth to my musing above, then Laird is WAAAAY more guilty than Maldo is of necessitating a costly special election.

I have thought about this some more, I and realize that my post above doesn’t make any sense.

If there are only two candidates, the primary election is the single election necessary (because in all likeliness, one will end up with 50% + 1 votes.) So my first assumption doesn’t work. Secondly, this is a partisan race, so the simple majority doesn’t work as the candidates will be appearng on separate ballots (Blakeslee on the Rep, and Laird on the Dem).

I just heard that he doesn’t even live in the district.

John Laird, do yourself a favor and give Alan Settle a call ASAP: (805) 878-7646

I think Sam has been a good representative and I’ll probably vote for him again. But I welcome this, because I never like to see someone run un-opposed. It’s not good for our political system.

I’m glad to see Blakeslee is FINALLY not running unopposed! It’s about time someone with a brain runs agains him. I would love to see SLO’s good old boy finally out of politics!