PALM DESERT — Only two of the five Senate candidates vying for the open seat in District 28 have agreed to participate in a candidate forum here on Sunday.

The two Senate candidates agreeing to participate are Elizabeth Romero, D-Indio, and Ana Nevenic, D-Palm Springs.

Those who have declined or not responded are Joy Silver, D-Palm Springs, who lost to former Sen. Jeff Stone for the same seat in 2018. Nevenic also challenged Stone in 2018. Nevenic lost in the primary election on June 5, 2018. Stone ultimately beat Silver and resigned his seat to start work on Nov. 1 as the Western Regional Director of the United States Department of Labor in the Trump administration.

The two Republicans are Assemblywoman Melissa Melendez of Lake Elsinore and John Schwab of Temecula, a real estate broker/small business owner. Neither will attend the forum.

“I’m still working, I have children,” Schwab told Uken Report. “I can’t just drop everything and run over to participate in forum because they want me to.”

The Melendez campaign did not return Uken Report’s email or phone call.

Silver told organizers she could not attend due to a conflict.

Local Coachella Valley organizations, like Mujeres Advancing Leadership, Advocacy, and Success (MALAS),  East West Alliance, Comite Latino in partnership with UNIVISION are hosting the Coachella Valley Community Forum of Candidates for State Senate, District 28 .

“The purpose of this forum is to give residents of the valley a chance to meet and be informed of your future plans as potential state senator,” Marcos Gonzalez, managing editor, of Univision said.

The Forum for senate candidates is set for 2-4 p.m. on Sunday, Feb. 9 at the Palm Desert Library, 73300 Fred Waring Drive in Palm Desert.

The special election for the 28th District State Senate seat will be held March 3, 2020, to coincide with the Democratic Presidential Primary.

The 28th Senate District, which is entirely in Riverside County, stretches from the vineyards of the Temecula Valley to the Colorado River and includes the cities of Blythe, Canyon Lake, Cathedral City, Coachella, Desert Hot Springs, Indian Wells, Indio, Lake Elsinore, La Quinta, Murrieta, Temecula, Palm Desert, Palm Springs, Rancho Mirage, and Wildomar.

Image Sources

  • Female candidate: Shutterstock