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The Desert Sun Endorses Ron Oden for California State Assembly, 80th District June 1, 2006

Posted by ronodenmedia in Endorsements, In the Media.
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Oden's independence makes him better candidate for Assembly seat

The Desert Sun
June 1, 2006 June 1, 2006


Democrats next Tuesday should back Ron Oden as the party's candidate for the 80th District Assembly seat. As Palm Springs' current mayor, Oden has shown himself to be an independent thinker, offers municipal experience that could prove beneficial for the valley and holds strong ties with many in the community.Oden faces Steve Clute, head of the nonprofit Children's Spine Foundation and Palm Desert resident, in the June 6 primary. The winner takes on incumbent Bonnie Garcia, R-Cathedral City, in the November general election.As mayor, Oden has proven himself a moderate willing to work across party lines, and in doing so has proven himself an independent voice on the City Council. He takes stands on principle but not on ideology. Indeed, during the past three years Oden has successfully worked with Palm Springs Councilmen Mike McCulloch and Chris Mills to get city business done. Most notably is establishing a retail district in the Ramon Road and Gene Autry Trail area. Because of this, he's helped improve Palm Springs' standing as a business-friendly city. This is the kind of leadership that is needed in Sacramento, where special interests too frequently influence decision-making and where partisanship prevents solutions.Oden offers important municipal experience that could prove useful in representing the valley. He served eight years on the Palm Springs City Council, having been elected in 1995, and has been mayor since 2003. Our valley essentially is a string of cities;the Imperial Valley, also in the 80th Assembly District, is becoming increasingly so. Bringing an understanding of cities' needs and problems they've faced when dealing with Sacramento gives Oden an advantage over Clute.

Strong ties to the valley mark another of Oden's strengths. He has served on a variety of regional bodies, including the board of directors for the United Way of the Desert. That experience comes through when Oden talks about how he would help the district if elected. He focuses on bringing state dollars to the valley to ensure we have more than one transportation artery and so that we expand our colleges. He speaks about striking a balance to resolve Salton Sea issues and then aggressively advocating that plan at the state level. He wants to recapture the movie industry from other states and countries, bringing it not just to the LA. basin but to the valley.

Clute touts how past experience in the state Legislature will give him a running start representing the district if elected. But with term limits, the Legislature has changed since Clute last served from 1982 to 1992. That, accompanied by Oden's charisma and ability to make connections, erodes the advantage Clute claims.

THE ISSUE
Democrats will decide Tuesday who will be their candidate for the 80th Assembly District: Ron Oden or Steve Clute. WE SUGGEST Democrats should vote for Ron Oden.

Our Endorsements

Positions we’ve taken:

  • Proposition 81 (Library bonds): No
  • Proposition 82 (Preschool education): No
  • 45th Congressional District (Democrats): David Roth
  • 80th Assembly District (Democrats): Ron Oden
  • Riverside County sheriff: Bob Doyle
  • County superintendent of schools: Dave Long
  • 5th District Board of Supervisors: Marion Ashley
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