Once the Republicans stopped obstructing the confirmation of southern California Congresswoman Hilda Solis to the Secretary of Labor post Obama had nominated her, the special election for her overwhelmingly Hispanic and overwhelmingly Democratic (PVI is D+15 and McCain received less than a third of the votes) got under way. CA-32 includes parts of East L.A., Monterey Park, Rosemeade, El Monte, Baldwin Park, Azusa, Covina and West Covina; it's 62% Hispanic and 18% Asian. The Republicans haven't bothered to run a candidate there since 2002. The multiparty primary is scheduled for May 19 and the general election will follow on Bastille Day (July 14). There are an even dozen candidates but political handicappers say it all comes down to 4 progressive front-runners: state Senator Gil Cedillo, state Board of Equalization member Judy Chu, former Solis deputy district director Benita Duran, and ex-Obama transition team member Emanuel Pleitez.
Blue America hasn't taken a stand on the race because all four front-runners seem like good choices. We had Emanuel Pleitez over for a live blog session at FDL in early March and today we'll be meeting Judy Chu at Crooks and Liars at 11 am (PT).
People who wrote off Judy Chu's chances in such an overwhelmingly Hispanic district missed the fact that Judy has represented the district in various elected capacities for two decades and that many of the Hispanic elected officials in the district have endorsed her (as has Hilda Solis' family and both the SEIU and the L.A. County Labor Federation). You can check out her stands on the important issues facing the district at her website, where you can also donate to her campaign. But first, please join us below, in the comments section for Dr. Chu's first official visit to Crooks and Liars.