On Thursday, former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa officially became the fourth Democrat to enter the race to become California’s 40th governor, after Jerry Brown is termed out in 2018.
Villaraigosa, who became the first Latino mayor of Los Angeles in over 130 years in 2005, launched a website for his campaign, naming it antonioforcalifornia.com.
This past March, Villaraigosa told Breitbart News that while he “wasn’t going to make any announcements,” he has not retired his mantle of public service, saying, “I have a lot of service left in me.”
Villarigosa issued a press release on his site, where he suggested “his campaign would focus on uniting California around solutions to rebuild the middle class by investing in our schools and repairing our state’s infrastructure. And he pledged to organize his campaign to ensure every voice is heard—particularly for those who have been ignored or left behind.”
Further, Villaraigosa took the opportunity to take a shot at President-elect Donald Trump. His press release wrote that he former mayor, “noted his entry into the race for governor just two days after Donald Trump was elected president created a clear contrast between a California vision of shared prosperity and the national political climate.”
In an interview with KQED on Thursday, Villaraigosa said he has spent recent weeks on a “listening” tour around the state. He reportedly said, “What I’ve heard is that people want their voices heard, so this campaign and this candidacy is about giving voice to every Californian — and particularly after this election, I think my candidacy is particularly poised to be an answer to the divisive nature of our politics. We need to be promoting unity, not division, and the answer to fear is hope.”
California Lieutenant Gov. Gavin Newsom is perhaps the highest-profile person running, and an early Field poll, released in October of last year, showed Villaraigosa and Newsom neck-and-neck in terms of voter support to replace Gov. Brown.
The other two candidates so far are State Treasurer John Chiang of Torrance, and former Delaine Eastin, who was the first woman to be elected as the California State Superintendent. Billionaire left-wing activist Tom Steyer is also considering a gubernatorial bid.
Other potential candidates include left-wing actor and activist George Clooney, Oakland Mayor Libby Schaaf, President pro-temporate of California’s State Senate Kevin de Léon, Secretary of State Alex Padilla, and Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti.
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