Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia did not file paperwork

SACRAMENTO — It was a political shockwave that could be felt throughout Riverside and Imperial counties — Assemblymember Eduardo H. Garcia, D-Coachella, is not seeking reelection to Assembly District 36, which includes Imperial County and cities and communities in Riverside County and San Bernardino County, in November 2024.

There was no formal announcement or news release, which is standard practice for his office. He simply did not file the necessary paperwork, by the deadline, which means the deadline has been extended to Dec. 13, German Cervantes, election technician for the Imperial County Registrar of Voters, told Uken Report.

His next term, if re-elected, would have been his last to serve in the state Assembly.

Garcia isn’t termed out until 2026 but he recently lost the influential Energy and Utilities Committee chairmanship after Speaker Robert Rivas reshuffled the leadership deck, according to Politico. (Garcia’s people had no comment.)

Democrats of the Desert (DOD), one of the largest Democratic clubs in the Coachella Valley, added a fifth early endorsement at its September member meeting for the State Legislature. It endorsed incumbent Garcia, who was said to be running for re-election.

During his tenure, Garcia has achieved success on legislation that would increase access to healthcare, create new parks, support small businesses, invest in broadband infrastructure, improve air and water quality, expand affordable housing, provide workforce training, and bring economic relief to underserved areas, like those in his district. He also secured historic investments for regional environmental priorities such as the Salton Sea and New River.

Neither he nor his communications director Aurora Saldivar has returned numerous text or phone messages.

“Eduardo Garcia has served his community honorably and well and whatever he decides to do as he moves forward, he will no doubt do well,” Elle Kurpiewski, Political Director of Democratic Headquarters told Uken Report. “His support of the Democratic Headquarters of the Desert has been invaluable, and we look forward to our continuing relationship with him.

At least four people are hoping to fill the seat: Pastor Jeff Gonzalez, who challenged Garcia in 2018 as a Republican, and Joey Acuna, a Democrat, according to the Riverside County Registrar of Voters.

Waymond Fermon, an Indio City Councilmember, has also pulled papers to seek the seat. He will make a formal announcement on Tuesday, he told Uken Report.

Eric L. Rodriguez, a social worker from Imperial declared his candidacy for the seat on Nov. 27; and Kalin Morse, a nonprofit director from Westmorland, declared candidacy Nov. 27, according to the Imperial County Registrar of Voters. Acuna has not yet qualified to be on the ballot.

Before serving the State Assembly, Garcia was elected to the Coachella City Council, and at the age of 29, he became Coachella’s first elected Mayor.

Image Sources

  • Eduardo-Garcia-Profile-800×568-2: Edwardo Garcia