A third Republican candidate for Jerry McNerney's Congressional seat announced his candidacy Thursday morning.
Tony Amador, a patrol officer for the Los Angeles Police Department for 13 years and U.S. Marshal the past seven years until his retirement in July, announced he is running for the 11th Congressional District seat held by McNerney, D-Pleasanton, who is serving his second term. It's the first time he's run for public office since his bid for the Orange County Republican Central Committee several years ago.
Amador, 65, said he moved to Lodi a month ago. Published reports indicated that he previously lived in Elk Grove. It's not a requirement to live within the congressional district - you only have to live in California - but it's the right thing to live in the district you represent, he said.
Amador hasn't officially filed for the seat because he hasn't registered to vote in San Joaquin County, where he now lives, according to Bassem Nakhla, an election technician for the San Joaquin County Registrar of Voters.
Amador joins two other Republican candidates, Brad Goehring, of Clements, and Jon Del Arroz, of Danville, in the race against McNerney. The primary election will be in June 2010, with the general election taking place the following November.
"I'm not running against the other two Republican candidates," Amador responded when asked what separates him from his opponents. "I'm running against Jerry McNerney and (House Speaker) Nancy Pelosi."
Nevertheless, Amador says he's the best Republican candidate due to his experience with the U.S. Marshal's Office and with the Narcotic Addict Evaluation Authority, Youthful Offender Parole Board, the U.S. Merit Systems Protection Board and Public Employment Relations Board.
Amador doesn't seem to be too well-known in the Lodi area. Mayor Larry Hansen, a Republican, said he received a phone message last week from Amador. Lodi City Councilwoman JoAnne Mounce, who is also an active Lodi Republican Women member, said she doesn't know anything about Amador either.
Ann Mehrten, another Lodi Republican Women member, said she heard a rumor that someone was moving into the 11th District, but she didn't know who it was.
Mehrten said she was trying to find out who the candidate was because the Lodi Republican Women hosted Amador's two Republican opponents at their monthly luncheon on Wednesday and would have liked Amador to join them.
However, Sara Blicharz, District 3 chairwoman of the county's Republican Party, said she knows Amador and knew for several months that he would probably run for McNerney's seat. Amador had reached out to Republican leaders in the county, Blicharz said.The News-Sentinel was the only member of the media to attend Amador's announcement. And there was no contact information on his Web site on Wednesday, though an e-mail address was added to the Web site on Thursday. His address is amadorforcongress.com.
Amador expressed traditional Republican values in his remarks on Thursday, criticizing Congress' spending habits and government's intrusion into people's lives.
"We have to tell Washington that when someone lies, you need to call him out," Amador said. "My Achilles heel is my honesty."
Amador said he retired in July because he believed he couldn't be an effective candidate.
The 11th Congressional District includes much of San Joaquin County, including the Lodi area, plus the San Ramon Valley, parts of the Livermore Valley and the city of Morgan Hill in south Santa Clara County.
Several candidates have moved to a new districtTony Amador has reportedly moved to Lodi in order to live within the 11th Congressional District, but he's far from being the only candidate to change his residence. Here are a few who have moved:
Dan Lungren, a Republican who moved from Roseville to Gold River, which is in the 3rd Congressional District.
Pete McCloskey, who moved from Rumsey, in western Yolo County, to Lodi, to run against incumbent Richard Pombo in the Republican primary in 2006 in the 11th Congressional District. Pombo defeated McCloskey in the primary, but lost to McNerney in the general election.
Guy Houston, who served three terms in the 15th Assembly District. He moved from Dublin, which is not in the district, to San Ramon during his first campaign in 2002.
Tom McClintock, a Republican elected in 2008 to the Fourth Congressional District, which includes Placer and several counties in northeastern California. He previously lived in Ventura and Elk Grove.
Source: News-Sentinel staff