Cunningham is Out; Three to Challenge for New Assembly Seat

Written by Estero Bay News

January 28, 2022

San Luis Obispo County — or at least most of it — will have a new State Assemblyman after the Republican incumbent bowed out of the race, and the newly formed district picks up a whole lot more Democrats.

Thirty-fifth District Assemblyman Jordan Cunningham announced that he would not seek re-election to the Assembly seat he’s held since 2016. 

“After talking it over with my wife and kids,” Cunningham said in a news release, “I have decided not to seek a fourth term in the State Assembly.”

Cunningham, who had been representing the 35th District — which used to include all of SLO County and Northern Santa Barbara County — saw the State Redistricting Commission re-draw the Central Coast District, dividing SLO County near the Southern County Line and lumping it together with Coastal Monterey County up to Capitola near Santa Cruz.

The change swung what has been for decades a Republican stronghold into a district that looks a lot more blue than red.

“It has been a great privilege to represent this community in Sacramento. San Luis Obispo County has been my home for most of my life, and northern Santa Barbara County has been my adopted home.”

So far there are three people who have announced their intentions to run for the new Assembly set.

Morro Bay Councilwoman Dawn Addis, who lost to Cunningham in 2020, and would be up for re-election in 2022, has announced that she will run for the new seat.

Monterey County Republican and businesswoman, Vicki Nohrden, who lost a bid in 2020 for the State Senate to Sen. John Laird has indicated she will challenge for the new seat as well.

And progressive Democrat, Jon Wizard, a Seaside City Councilman and retired first responder, has also launched a campaign.

There may also be others who join the race but no matter how many candidates there end up being, under California’s Primary Election system, the top two candidates in the June Primary Election — regardless of party affiliation — will run off at the November General Election. And with the candidates trending 2:1 Democrat, there is a good chance SLO County will have its first ever Democrat Assemblyman.

If readers would like to begin researching the candidates online, Addis’ website is at: dawnaddis.org; Wizard’s website is at: www.electwizard.com; and Nohrden doesn’t appear to have launched a new website as of yet, however, her website for the 2020 State Senate race is still active, see: www.vicki4senate.com, as it gives her relative information on how she stands on the issues, which haven’t changed much in California since 2020.

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