Rep. Jerry McNerney is moving to San Joaquin County to seek re-election here rather than at his current home in Pleasanton.
"After spending so much time in San Joaquin County, it truly is my home," McNerney said in a news release Thursday afternoon. "That's why I'm planning to move my residence to San Joaquin County and put down even more roots in this community."
However, it won't be known until Aug. 15 what the congressional district boundaries will look like, when the California Citizens Redistricting Commission adopts its final map. A final draft of the legislative maps will be released for public review today.
According to a previous proposal, Lodi and most of San Joaquin County would be in the same congressional district along with Brentwood and Antioch.
McNerney was elected for the first time in 2006, when he upset Republican Richard Pombo, of Tracy, in the 11th Congressional District, which includes the Lodi area. McNerney defeated Republican Dean Andal, of Stockton, in a re-election bid in 2008 and David Harmer, of San Ramon, last year.
Campaign spokeswoman Sarah Hersh said that McNerney chose to run in San Joaquin County because he believes it is where he can best serve the people.
Political consultant Don Parsons says that the congressional district, as the lines were drawn prior to the final proposal to be released today, shows a slight Democratic majority. However, the district is conservative enough that Democrats think that the GOP will win the San Joaquin County seat unless McNerney runs locally, Parsons said.
McNerney has shown that he can win in San Joaquin County, Parsons said, because he has already beaten Harmer and Andal, two solid Republican candidates.
Another likely reason McNerney chose to run in the Central Valley, Parsons said, is that he would face a challenge from incumbent Democrat Fortney "Pete" Stark, of Fremont, because McNerney's current home in Pleasanton stands to be in Stark's district when the lines are changed.
Republican Ricky Gill, of Lodi, announced in May that he will run for whichever congressional district includes Lodi.
"We're confident that voters realize it's too little, too late," Gill campaign spokesman Colin Hunter said upon hearing the news of McNerney's move. "Moving into San Joaquin County doesn't compensate for six years of neglect.
"It's ironic at a time when many people are leaving San Joaquin County as a result of economic circumstances exacerbated by Jerry McNerney's policies that he would choose to move into San Joaquin County," Hunter added.
Hersh said on Thursday that McNerney has a proven track record of winning tough elections.
McNerney has not decided where in San Joaquin County he will move, Hersh said. He will move to the county "as soon as it's feasible," she added.
Contact reporter Ross Farrow at firstname.lastname@example.org.