DeSaulnier announces he will run for Miller’s Congressional seat

Mark DeSaulnier

Mark DeSaulnier

In response to the retirement announcement by Congressman George Miller, today, State Senator Mark DeSaulnier, a Democrat, who represents Antioch, announced that he will run this year for California’s 11th Congressional district seat, which Miller represents. The 11th district covers about 30% of Antioch.

I considered Rep. Miller one of California’s strongest champions for working people and the middle class,” said Senator DeSaulnier. “I’ve always greatly admired Rep. Miller’s tireless work ethic, his dedication to the residents of his district, along with his deep devotion and perseverance in fighting for the progressive values and issues that matter most to Californians.”

Senator DeSaulnier added, “Rep. Miller will be missed, but his legacy of working to create good jobs, increase access to healthcare, improve our schools, and help California flourish in a global economy, will live on forever.”

It’s truly been an honor working closely with Rep. Miller for over 20 years on a variety of critical issues. We’ve partnered together during my tenures as a local City Councilman, County Supervisor, member of the State Assembly, and recently in my current job as a member of the State Senate.”

I’m running for Congress to help bring an end to the brinkmanship and gridlock in Washington, so that we can move forward with President Obama’s agenda of creating more good paying jobs, growing our middle class, investing in our infrastructure, increasing access to healthcare, advancing the use of renewable and homegrown energy, enhancing our education systems, and making the United States a leader in innovation around the globe.”

I plan to hit the ground running hard in this campaign.  I am ready to run and ready to serve the people of the 11th District,” explained Senator DeSaulnier.

Currently, DeSaulnier represents California’s 7th Senate district, which covers 70% of California’s 11th Congressional district. He was elected in 2008 and reelected in 2012. Previously, DeSaulnier represented California’s old 11th State Assembly district from 2006-2008.

He got his start in Contra Costa politics by being appointed to the Concord Planning Commission in 1988, then elected to the City Council in 1991 where he served as Mayor in 1993. Then in 1994, DeSaulnier, then a Republican, was appointed to fill a vacancy on the Board of Supervisors by Governor Pete Wilson. He later switched to the Democrat Party before running for his third term in 2002.

In 2009, he ran for Congress in the special election for former Rep. Ellen Tauscher’s seat, but lost in the Democrat primary to former California Lt. Governor John Garamendi, who continues to serve in Congress, today and represented Antioch, until redistricting moved his district north to Solano County in 2012.

County Supervisor Candace Andersen, a top Republican who lives in the 11th Congressional District, said through her staff, she’s been getting calls all day, today, that she’s happy serving the people of the 2nd Supervisorial district and there’s much to be done, so she will not be seeking the Congressional seat. The ranking Republican in the district, District Attorney Mark Peterson, who is up for reelection in June, was unavailable for comment for this story.

If DeSaulnier is elected to the congressional seat, that will trigger a special election next year, for the remainder of his State Senate term, causing a further game of political dominoes or musical chairs. The most likely candidates will be Assembly Members Joan Buchanan, Susan Bonilla or Jim Frazier.

Filing to run for Congress will be open February 10th through March 7th. but, candidates can pick up In Lieu of Signature petitions now, through February 20th. For more information visit or call (925) 646-4166.

For more information about Senator DeSaulnier, visit his state website at

Allen Payton contributed to this report.

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