State Assembly Race Strains Campos, Chavez Relationship

A race that’s still a year away has created a wedge between two longtime political allies. Sources tell Fly that county Supervisor Cindy Chavez and Assemblymember Nora Campos (D-San Jose), who terms out next year, have not been on the closest of terms ever since Chavez refused to back Nora’s bumbling baby brother, former San Jose Councilman Xavier Campos, for Assembly District 27. There's also the fact that Nora terrorized Andres Quintero, a former staffer to Chavez, like many of her since departed staffers. Nora and Cindy are still on speaking terms but there’s “a lot of tension,” according to a source. It appears Chavez and the labor machine are more inclined to back Ash Kalra, who already has the support of San Jose Councilman Raul Peralez—a former cop—and the city’s police union. But the Camposes aren’t the only ones fixated on keeping the seat in Latino hands. Word is the Legislative Latino Caucus in Sacramento actively recruited first-year SJ council members Magdalena Carrasco, who vanquished Baby X for the East Side council seat last year, and Peralez, who declined to run and endorsed Kalra. Carrasco, who has a child with State Senate president Kevin de León, might never have a better opportunity to climb the ladder than now, and she’s been cagey about her plans. But word is she’s leaning toward staying put, which could open the door for lifelong Assembly aspirant Darcie Green, who currently sits on the county Board of Education. Green’s had her share of embarrassments, so the Latino Caucus might be her best bet to receive institutional support. It would be a reluctant pairing, according to sources, but the Latino Caucus has a history of supporting candidates who aren’t exactly ideal policy matches. Former city Vice Mayor Madison Nguyen is also running for the AD27 seat, and Van Le, a Republican on the East Side school board, could split the female vote even further.

Correction: A previous version of this story incorrectly cited a past endorsement by the Latino Caucus. San Jose Inside regrets the error.

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6 Comments

  1. I’ve met Andres Quintero in passing a few times. Always sharply dressed (but always sat in the back during DCC meetings with PJA) and just an all around nice guy. Too nice to be “Terrorized” as SJI put it. Chavez just from the few times meeting her always struck me as someone who would stay above all the mess. Just a genuinely nice person.

    Carrasco’s staying put. She’s probably sick of getting asked that all the time.

    Kalra and Green should not go toe to toe. No, rather, Ash should run for Mayor when he terms out of council. Sure, the same could be done with Green, but I don’t think she has nearly the amount of local public employee support Kalra does. Green being on a county board, has a bigger chunk of the AD27 map.

    • Sorry for the bizarre side note, but I just had to say that I still have a vintage “Dom Cortese Works for You” pot holder, given to me among other things by my Grandmother when I moved into my own apartment for the first time. My kids asked me what it meant, and I didn’t actually know until I looked it up. Still in use after probably 4 decades.

      • Heh ya, that stuff floated around the family for years. We had a seperate electrical meter in the creek by the prune ranch I was raised on. They build a shack around it (vandals) and part of the shack was built from an old Dom Cortese billboard. His mug stared at me from the bottom of the creek for years.

    • Ash for Mayor? He needs to prove he can at least get the two air monitoring stations by the Metcalf Energy Center up and running. Ash has been working on this campaign promise for six years and has accomplished very little.

      • Really? He should just do like PLO did with the radar gun and just get it to the residents. They’re pretty cheap these days. The only recurring cost is getting your control gas (used to make sure the units are still calibrated right)