Brown Smothers Local Party Challenge In 47th District

Assemblywoman Cheryl Brown appears to be cruising toward an easy reelection later this year after she put down an incipient intraparty insurrection led by a sister Democrat at a pre-endorsement conference on Saturday.
The Region 9 division of the California Democratic Party held its pre-statewide conference in Palmdale on Saturday at which local delegates made their recommendations for party endorsements.
First elected in 2012, Brown represents the 47th Assembly District, in which voter registration strongly favors the Democrats. On Saturday, Brown was faced with a relatively rare challenge for an incumbent in a “safe” district, when Eloise Gomez Reyes, a Colton-based attorney and longtime Democratic Party activist who in 2014 unsuccessfully vied for Congress in California’s 31st Congressional District, tested her strength in supplanting Brown.
As an incumbent, Brown was on track to receive the party’s routine automatic endorsement. Gomez Reyes moved to challenge her, but succeeded in capturing only 20 percent of the endorsements from the party’s Region 9 delegates. The 80 percent show of confidence in Brown exceeded the 70 percent threshold the statewide party considers the necessary benchmark upon which to award an endorsement. The California Democratic Party will hold its state convention in San Jose on February 26, 27 & 28.
Brown sought to wallpaper over the temporary challenge to her primacy in the 47th District. “We’ve been working hard to bring Democratic unity to the Inland Empire, and today’s confirmation of support validates this effort,” she said.
In State Senate District 21, Jonathan Irving and Star Moffatt are fighting it out for the party endorsement. Irving captured the endorsement of 39 delegates, while Moffatt pulled down six.
Congressman Pete Aguilar is the only official Democratic candidate in California’s 31st Congressional District, though Bob Conaway is contemplating a run, having taken out papers to do so but having not yet filed them. Conaway, like Gomez Reyes, stands virtually no prospect of wresting the state party endorsement from the incumbent Aguilar, though Conaway appears intent on making an issue of the consideration that Aguilar voted with his Republican Congressional colleagues against giving social security recipients a cost-of-living increase while simultaneously conferring upon members of Congress a raise.
Scott Markovich, who was formerly a Republican and as such vied for election in 2014 as 33rd District Assemblyman, is now running as a Democrat in the 33rd yet again, looking to knock off the incumbent, Republican Jay Obernolte, who was victorious in 2014 in his first attempt at state office. Perhaps because of distrust over his status as a former member of the GOP, Markovich, the only Democrat competing in the 33rd at this point, received only three endorsements.

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