Campaigns

Saturday, March 8, 2014 – 10:00 a.m.
Last Modified, Saturday, March 8, 2014 – 02:00 p.m.

You gotta hand it to the local democrats.

What should have been a sure lock to pull the 31st Congressional District into the blue column is now up in the air.

A potential candidate field of four democrats, and three republicans, could make for an interesting primary.

Democrats, by diluting their vote, have taken another big risk.

In the republican field, lesser-known Businesswoman/Congressional staffer Lesli Gooch (R-Rancho Cucamonga) has money and party backing, while anti-drug activist Paul Chabot (R-Rancho Cucamonga) has name identification from his previous Assembly run, where he narrowly lost to Mike Morrell. San Bernardino City Councilman John Valdivia, who pulled papers, has yet to file. Valdivia has minimal name recognition of the three, with little, make that no, funding.

On the democrat front, all four candidates have officially filed. Yes, there are four democrats in. All, except one, have ballot statements.

Emily’s List candidate Eloise Gomez Reyes (D-Colton) is gaining a foothold over party establishment darling Pete Aguilar (D-Redlands). Like we’ve been saying, Aguilar isn’t that great of a campaigner and, once again, he’s taken his annoited status and translated into a reason to be lazy and lose. When the Los Angeles Times runs a story about your opponent’s momentum, you know your starting to sink.

The other two men in the race, Former Congressman Joe Baca and School Board Trustee Danny Tillman, will also draw votes. Baca especially, since the 31st runs through his geographical area of core support. Tillman has no ballot statement or money.

The closing date to file for the seat is Wednesday at 5 p.m.