San Jacinto Council Member the Rev, Brian Hawkins to run for Congress

The Rev. Brian Hawkins, a San Jacinto City Council member, elected in 2020, and pastor has announced plans to challenge incumbent Rep. Raul Ruiz, D-Palm Desert, in 2022.

Pastor Brian Hawkins to Challenge Rep. Raul Ruiz“It has nothing to do with politics and everything to do with unity,” Hawkins told Uken Report in a telephone interview. “It bothers me when I see race being the narrative, It’s time to put a nail in the coffin of that conversation.”

Racism is the greatest war of all time, Hawkins said.

“I can’t wait to have an exit strategy,” he said.

Hawkins said said he has launched his campaign so early so constituents have the opportunity to get a “really good understanding” of his character, his goals, his work ethic and more.

In a YouTube video, Hawkins, 42, said he will advocate for unity. He also said he wants a strong border and immigrants to have a pathway to citizenship. Furthermore, he said he wants to make sure veterans feel appreciated – not just thanked.

“As a whole, the government — period has failed our veterans,” Hawkins said. “There should not be one homeless veteran, not one, without benefits. If I were a veteran I would be so offended at the attention being given to immigrants at the border.”

On his Facebook page, Hawkins, who has spent a total of 10 years behind bars, says, “I am the most dangerous political figure in (Calif.) Let’s go ahead and address the elephant in the room — I’m black and I’m conservative. With that, here are some things I stand behind:”

  • PRO-COP: I back the blue.
  • PRO-2A: I protect the 2nd amendment.
  • PRO-LIFE: I believe every livelihood is essential.

Hawkins will lead a Bible study at 8:30 a.m. Wednesday, March 31 at the East Valley Republican Women Federated. Hawkins also led the prayer at Sheriff Chad Bianco’s swearing-in ceremony.

“We welcome Pastor Hawkins to the race for Congress,” Roy Behr, a campaign consultant for Ruiz said in an email statement to Uken Report.  “Dr. Ruiz will be proud to highlight his own record as an irreplaceable leader who is helping the Riverside County recover from COVID-19 and rebuild the economy.  There has never been a more important time for us to be represented by a physician with a proven record of public service.

Ruiz, who worked as an emergency room physician until he was elected in 2012, represents California’s 36th District, which includes the entire Coachella Valley, as well as the cities of Banning, Beaumont, Blythe, Hemet and San Jacinto. He resides in Palm Desert,

Over the years Ruiz has held off a quartet of Republican challengers.

In 2020, Ruiz triumphed over Erin Cruz.

In 2018, Ruiz defeated Republican Kimberlin Brown Pelzer in the general election by a vote of 59 percent to 41 percent.

In 2016, Ruiz bested former Republican state Sen. Jeff Stone,

California’s 36th Congressional District was a battleground district in 2014 due to the low margin of victory for Democrats in the previous election and last two presidential elections. Incumbent Raul Ruiz (D) and Brian Nestande (R) triumphed in the blanket primary over Ray Haynes (R). Ruiz went on to defeat Nestande in the general election on November 4, 2014.

According to a Washington Post article in December 2012, Ruiz was one of the 10 most vulnerable incumbents in 2014.

Ruiz was a member of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee’s Frontline Program. The program was designed to help protect vulnerable Democratic incumbents heading into the 2014 election.


Image Sources

  • The Rev. Brian Hawkins: YouTube