By STEVEN TAVARES
Citizen Exclusive!SENATOR EXPLORED RUN FOR ALAMEDA COUNTY SUPERVISOR WITH URGING OF SUPPORTERS
LEGISLATUREState Sen. Ellen Corbett ended weeks of speculation regarding her political future by announcing Wednesday she will run for re-election in June.
In a telephone message late Wednesday, Corbett said she had explored a possible campaign to replace departing Alameda County Supervisor Alice Lai-Bitker, but reconsidered to continue representing the tenth district.
"After careful consideration, I decided, of course, I would like to continue my work as a state senator," said Corbett. The former San Leandro mayor and assemblywoman says she enjoys her work a senator in Sacramento and puts saving San Leandro Hospital as her top priority this year.
Corbett said many of her supporters encouraged her to run for supervisor and out of respect of their wishes, she attended meetings on behalf of political groups, including endorsement interviews with the Central Labor Council.
Corbett's brief flirtation with moving from the capitol to closer to home in Oakland started slowly two months ago after the suddenly decision by Lai-Bitker to not seek re-election. The subsequent news allowed for a slew of candidates to be quickly thrown onto the slate. Former Supervisor Wilma Chan, former San Leandro Mayor Shelia Young and Alameda Mayor Beverley Johnson quickly rose to the top of possible candidates. Whispers quickly began to include the name of the first-term state senator, but while most local politicos thought it might be possible, most dismissed the rumors as a sideshow to Corbett's believed intention to move to a statewide office somewhere down the line.
As Lai-Bitker enthusiastically endorsed Alameda City Councilwoman Lena Tam over Chan and possibly fracturing the all-important Chinatown voters in the north of District 3, the Corbett rumors once again heated up. Numerous local politicians told The Citizen, Corbett had a more than cursory interest in the supervisor's seat. Several sources then told The Citizen this last Monday Corbett had ended his her look at board of supervisors and would return to her work in the senate.
According to the Alameda County Registrar Office, Corbett's declaration of her candidacy was filed Wednesday. The deadline for candidates to file for the June primary is Friday, Mar. 12. At this moment, Corbett is running unopposed for the Democratic nomination. A rematch of her previous senate race could occur in November with Republican Lou Filipovich, whom she handily defeated. Robert Blake Maffit and Jeffrey Wald are also likely opponents for the Republican nomination.
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