Bill Emmerson

Legislator says all 7 GOP rivals worthy
Wendy Leung, Staff Writer
Created: 05/08/2010 07:07:55 AM PDT

Work hard, pound the pavement and enjoy yourself.

That’s the advice Assemblyman Bill Emmerson, R-Rancho Cucamonga, has for the seven Republican candidates seeking his termed-out seat.

Six years ago, he did just that, dividing his time evenly between the western and eastern portions of the 63rd District – which spans Rancho Cucamonga, Upland, San Antonio Heights, Redlands, Loma Linda, Grand Terrace and parts of Fontana, San Bernardino, Highland, Yucaipa, Moreno Valley and Riverside.

With several friends looking to replace him, Emmerson isn’t making any endorsements.

“I think it’s a very fine group of candidates and any one of them will do a great job representing the 63rd District,” Emmerson said. “They’re a very focused group trying to create jobs and fix the economy. I am offering my support to all of them.”

Seven candidates are vying to win the GOP nomination in the heavily Republican district in the June 8 primary. They are former teacher Jacqueline Bolda, former parole board commissioner Paul Chabot, Redlands Mayor Pat Gilbreath, Rancho Cucamonga Mayor Don Kurth, business owner Mike Morrell, financial analyst Henry Nickel and Fontana Councilwoman Acquanetta Warren.

Emmerson said the key to success in a race this crowded is to be diligent when it comes to walking precincts.

On April 13, Emmerson won the Republican primary in a special election for Riverside County’s 37th state Senate District. Emmerson will face
Democratic and American Independent Party candidates on June 8.

Last November, Emmerson changed his voter registration from Redlands to Hemet in order to run for the open state Senate seat. The assemblyman had a dental practice in Hemet prior to his 2004 victory.

Among the projects Emmerson said he is the most proud of during his six years in the Assembly are those dealing with transportation issues. He said the 60/91/215 Interchange Improvement Project, which added lanes, reconstructed bridges and made other improvements, was necessary in a region strongly impacted by port traffic.

He acknowledges that his tenure in the Assembly ends with voters deeply frustrated.

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