Michael Costa/Daily Journal
Rich Gordon speaks to a group of supporters at the San Mateo Democratic Headquarters last night thanking them for their support and hard work.
Rich Gordon easily held back two opponents to win the Assembly District 21 seat as Jerry Hill and Leland Yee were both re-elected to their state seats.
Gordon, president of the San Mateo County Board of Supervisors, earned 59.6 percent of the vote as Republican challenger Greg Conlon earned 36.2 percent of the vote and Ray Bell Jr., a Libertarian, earned 4.2 percent of the vote.
Gordon takes the seat from Ira Ruskin, D-Redwood City, who is termed out of office.
Hill, D-San Mateo, was re-elected to his Assembly District 19 seat with 70.3 percent of the vote. His challengers, Alberto Waisman and Gary Tutin, earned 26.9 percent and 2.8 percent, respectively.
State Sen. Leland Yee, D-San Francisco/San Mateo, easily won a second term for the Senate District 8 seat, earning 78.2 percent of the vote. His challenger, San Francisco resident Doo Sup Park, earned just 21.8 percent of the vote in last night’s election.
Funding education is Gordon’s top priority when he gets to Sacramento. He also intends to introduce legislation to reform the state’s budget process and supports eliminating the two-thirds majority needed to pass a state budget.
Gordon was grateful to his supporters last night after it became clear he won.
"I’ve taken on a huge task,” Gordon said last night. "I look at the challenge and I think I’m up for it. The region needs someone to reach for common ground.”
He also said getting by candidates Josh Becker and Yoriko Kishimoto, his Democratic rivals in the June primary, helped make him a better candidate. He held the same regard for Conlon.
Conlon campaigned extensively against the California High-Speed Rail Authority’s plan to use the Caltrain corridor for the $40 billion state project.
"Gordon needs to listen to the community about high-speed rail or he will have a short tenure,” Conlon said last night.
District 21 includes San Carlos, Redwood City to the north and Los Gatos and South San Jose Almaden Valley in Santa Clara County to the south.
Gordon sides with Hill when it comes to solving the state’s $20 billion budget deficit. Hill also wants to reform the way the state adopts a budget and is supportive of eliminating the two-thirds majority needed to approve it. Hill’s top priority in Sacramento is to solve the deficit and get people back to work.
Hill previously served on San Mateo County Board of Supervisors starting in 1999 after serving seven years as a San Mateo councilman, including turns as mayor.
Yee fought off a Republican candidate with little name recognition in San Mateo County to reclaim his Senate seat. Yee has been in Sacramento for almost eight years now, after serving two terms in the Assembly.
His main focus for San Mateo County is to improve the area’s public transportation system, maintain critical health care and social services and to prevent the state from taking any more money out of the county to fix its $20 billion deficit.
He also wants to get as much funding as possible from the California High-Speed Rail Authority to help improve the county’s transportation system.
Bill Silverfarb can be reached by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org or by phone: (650) 344-5200 ext. 106.