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.