Bowen for Congress

Tonight CDP Chair John Burton emailed party delegates to announce Jane Harman’s resignation. But what was most interesting was who he mentioned as the only candidate who has told the CDP they’re running for the CA-36 seat – and it wasn’t Janice Hahn:

As of the sending of this email, the only candidate that has officially informed the California Democratic Party that they are running in the 36th congressional district is Debra Bowen. Bowen has been our Secretary of State since 2007 and she is a former State Senator and State Assemblymember from the area.

Yep. Debra Bowen appears to be running for Congress. She has an ActBlue page up as well. Although she’s made no formal announcement, she did tell Bob Brigham earlier today that she was “giving it very serious thought”.

It makes sense for Bowen to jump into the race. She’s termed out in 2014, and in 2018 the race for governor will be a slugfest between Gavin Newsom, Kamala Harris, and maybe some other folks as well. Bowen has served her terms in the Legislature, and so there isn’t much else for her to do in Sacramento. As much as I liked the idea of Governor Bowen, Congresswoman Bowen works too.

So too does Senator Bowen – as in United States Senator. Dianne Feinstein is likely to run for re-election in 2012 and will probably win. But by 2018 she might be ready to hang it up, and the House of Representatives would be a good place to launch a campaign for Senate – just ask Barbara Boxer.

Most importantly, Bowen has shown herself to be a strong progressive leader during her time in Sacramento – not just as one of the best Secretaries of State in the country, but as a good progressive legislator during her years in the State Capitol. She won’t be just one of 435 Representatives – she’ll be a strong voice for change and for 21st century solutions to our problems.

Janice Hahn has run for the seat before and has a local base, but so too does Bowen. Bowen’s ability to raise money statewide outstrips Hahn’s, and Bowen is likely to get more grassroots support, although one should never dismiss what Hahn can bring to the table.

It should be an interesting race between Hahn, Bowen, and who knows who else that jumps in. Either one would be a huge upgrade over the anti-Constitution Jane Harman, even if my support will ultimately lie with Bowen.

21 thoughts on “Bowen for Congress”

  1. The only problem is that she has been such a good secretary of state, and is somewhat uniquely qualified, that I’d hate to lose her in that position.

  2. Go Debra!

    It’s worth noting that although Janice Hahn has run for this seat before, she didn’t win. It would make as much sense to expect Marcy Winograd to replace Jane Harman. By contrast Debra Bowen has won statewide, and is probably the politician in California with the most proven integrity and responsibility to voters. I hope she runs and eventually takes Dianne Feinstein’s Senate seat. Kamala Harris would be an excellent choice for Governor in 2018.

  3. I recall some drama, and a decent effort on Harman’s part to defend her Democratic cred, but the damage was done.  

  4. “Dianne Feinstein is likely to run for re-election in 2012 and will probably win.”

    not that anybody would try to DO anything about that, like hound her into retirement, or run against her in the primary

    not that there are any people called “liberys” or “programists” or whatever who would try to do such a thing

    we all think she’s been doing a Bang Up Job!

  5. Debra Bowen is very thoughtful and principled and has the respect of all the Democrats I’ve met who know her. She would make a great Senator.

    Janice Hahn is thoughtful and principled as well, and is great at bringing energy and attention to issues.

    Hahn is my Councilmember and has been a real champion for the Clean Trucks Program and for labor.  I have seen her show courage that I don’t see in other electeds.  The fight for Clean Trucks has moved to the House. We need Janice Hahn to wage that fight. Janice will be an outspoken advocate for Progressive causes.

    My hope is that Debra decides to run for Senate and Janice becomes my member of Congress.

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