When it rains it pours, and the month of March has flooded San Jose’s 2014 mayoral race with new candidates. On Thursday, San Jose Councilman Pete Constant confirmed with San Jose Inside that he will make a run to become the top elected official in the city. Constant represents the western portion of San Jose.
Earlier this week, SJI reported that Councilman Pierluigi Oliverio also plans to run for mayor. Oliverio represents the Willow Glen and Cambrian neighborhoods.
Constant provides voters a clear contrast from the candidates who have already announced their intention to run. Unlike Oliverio, a fiscally conservative and socially liberal independent (although he’s listed as a Democrat), and Vice Mayor Madison Nguyen, a Democrat who once enjoyed organized labor’s support before an ugly recall election and backing pension reform through Measure B, Constant is a clear-cut Republican. He may not rise to the conservative level of new Councilman Johnny Khamis, but Constant is fairly far to the right. He was the only elected official from San Jose to attend last year’s Republican National Convention.
He did, however, surprise observers in a recent City Council vote to support same-sex marriage in an amicus brief sent to the U.S. Supreme Court.
Constant, who was considering running for Paul Fong’s State Assembly seat in 2014, came to the City Council in 2007 after 14 years with the San Jose Police Department. He suffered a career-ending injury while serving in the line of duty.
Along with the three aforementioned councilmembers who plan to run next year for Mayor Chuck Reed’s termed out seat, City Hall retiree David Wall and Louis Garza have also filed papers with the City Clerk. It’s still very early in the process—candidates can’t even start collecting campaign contributions until December—but Councilman Sam Liccardo is also expected to run for mayor, as is county Supervisor Dave Cortese. And there could be more.
Interesting to note, Richard McCoy filed papers just two weeks ago to run for Constant’s District 1 seat in 2014.