Photo Courtesy of Gary Jeandron
Gary Jeandron, who lost to Chad Mayes for the 42nd Assembly District seat, will again challenge the politically beleaguered Mayes in 2018.
Mayes has represented the sprawling district that includes parts of Riverside and San Bernardino counties since 2014.
Jeandron, 62, who has run unsuccessfully twice for state Assembly and once for Riverside County Supervisor, said he will put himself on the political stage once again because, “I still believe I can make a difference.”
A successful campaign will cost him between $350,000 and $500,000, Jeandron said.
He spent more than $440,000 in 2010 when he challenged John Benoit for Riverside County Supervisor, according to campaign finance records. Benoit, who was victorious, spent more than $633,000 on that race.
Jeandron a Republican said in an email interview that he was recruited to run by “several political friends,” but declined to identify them.
His motivation for challenging Mayes is due in large part to Mayes’ vote that cost him his position as Republican caucus leader. For nearly two years in that position he was able to spearhead fundraising efforts throughout the state.
Mayes, 40, got crossways with his party after he joined Democrats in August to extend California’s Cap-and-Trade Program to 2030. The controversial program requires businesses to buy permits to release greenhouse gas emissions.
“(The program) drives up gas prices, hurts the working poor and small business,” Jeandron said.
He is a self-described “nice guy with a soft demeanor,” but do not be fooled if you think he can’t handle Sacramento, he said.
“I survived 33 years in law enforcement with the same demeanor, I can handle Sacramento politics,” Jeandron said.
One of Jeandron’s first public endorsements comes from former Palm Springs Police Capt. Michael McCabe. He has endorsed Jeandron, his former boss, in every election and this is no exception. The pair have been friends for more than 40 years and worked together for 30 years.
Jeandron, who has never shied from talking about his Christianity, has three qualities that have earned McCabe’s endorsement, he said: trust, experience and knowledge.
“Outside of my family, Gary is the most trustworthy person that I know,” McCabe said in a written statement. “My life has been in Gary’s hands on several occasions. Gary has never let me down or disappointed me. Gary can be trusted to follow through on what he says and what he believes in as a candidate and as a State Assembly member.”
McCabe added that Jeandron has proven experience in government administration as a police chief, school board member and college instructor.
“As a small business owner, Gary knows how difficult it is in California to run a successful business with the current high taxes and over regulations that currently exist in the state,” McCabe said. “Gary lives full time in the Coachella Valley where he knows the challenges and opportunities that exist. Gary wants to serve the people in this district in Sacramento and be a reasonable voice for all the people of this district.”
Jeandron, who resides in La Quinta, is the second Republican to announce a challenge to Mayes. The first to announce was U.S. Navy Veteran and former San Jacinto Mayor Andrew Kotyuk. He also mounted an unsuccessful bid for a seat on the Riverside County Board of Supervisors.
The 42nd District represents the San Gorgonio Pass, most of Hemet, San Jacinto, Calimesa, Indian Wells, La Quinta, Palm Springs, Cabazon, Rancho Mirage and desert communities in San Bernardino County, including Twentynine Palms and Joshua Tree. The 42nd District represents the San Gorgonio Pass, most of Hemet, San Jacinto, Calimesa, Indian Wells, La Quinta, Palm Springs, Cabazon, Rancho Mirage and desert communities in San Bernardino County, including Twentynine Palms and Joshua Tree.