SMART Transportation Division Endorses Gavin Newsom and others for the Statewide Direct Primary


Lieutenant Governor Gavin Newsom is by far the most qualified and progressive candidate in the field to fill the role of Governor.  As the Mayor of the City and County of San Francisco, he understands the public transportation needs of a major metropolitan city like Los Angeles.  When General Chairman Marco Gudino met with him earlier this year, Newsom expressed concern for unprovoked operator assaults.  He dealt with a similar issue with parking enforcement officers in San Francisco. Newsom has also always been a strong union advocate and supporter of quality pay & benefits for municipal workers, operator safety and increased transit ridership.  He has also expressed his skepticism for the benefits of subcontracting, anti-union efforts and autonomous vehicles.  We truly believe that if this union needed Governor Newsom to weigh in on an issue that impacted our members, we would have an educated, attentive, and compassionate ally.

SMART TD will be in good company with this endorsement.  Gavin Newsome has also been endorsed by LA County Supervisors Hilda Solis and Janice Hahn, Senator Kamila Harris, and the California Labor Federation.

For the other candidates in the field, we feel the LA Times summed them up best.

“Wealthy Republican businessman John Cox has no experience in government other than failed bids for office in Illinois and unsuccessful ballot initiatives in California. Assemblyman Travis Allen (R-Huntington Beach) is running as a Trump Mini-Me, pandering to the right with irresponsible positions contrary to those held by most Californians. The other two well-known Democrats in the race, state Treasurer John Chiang and former state Superintendent of Public Instruction Delaine Eastin, just don't have the experience or the chops to serve as chief executive of this massive government. Chiang — for whom we initially had high hopes — has been surprisingly unwilling to take strong stances or unpopular positions. None of the other 21 people on the ballot are prepared to be governor.” - LA Times Editorial Board, May 10, 2018.

As for Former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, there are almost zero scenarios where General Committee 875 could endorse him.  Villaraigosa took it as a personal affront when SMART endorsed James Hahn for Mayor in 2001 and 2005.  SMART’s relationship with the Hahn family went back decades with Kenneth Hahn, and it was not a relationship that SMART would discard in the 2005 Los Angeles Mayoral Race.  When Villaraigosa won the race, this union feels that he sought to punish us for not endorsing him.  This is a history that this union can’t shake so easily.  We seek to support candidates who will do the right thing, and support our members no matter the history.  We don’t feel that Villaraigosa is the right candidate for that job.

The 2018 Election season is upon us, with California holding its Primary Elections on June 5th, 2018. The SMART Transportation Division California State Legislative Director has published the list of endorsed candidates, and you can read that list below.  The list includes statewide and legislative districts.

For more information about the election including where to vote, you can visit the California Secretary of State’s website at

2018 California State Legislative Board State Primary Endorsements

Gavin Newsom (D)

LT. Governor
Ed Hernandez (D)

Secretary of State
Alex Padilla (D)(I)

State Treasurer
Fiona Ma

Attorney General
Xavier Becerra (D)(I)

Betty Yee (D)(I)

Supt. Of Public Instruction
Tony Thurmond (D)

Insurance Commissioner
Ricardo Lara (D)

Ballot Measures

Prop. 68: Yes -  California Drought, Water, Parks, Climate, Coastal Protection, and Outdoor Access For All Act of 2018.

Prop. 69: Yes - Motor vehicle fees and taxes: restriction on expenditures: appropriations limit.

Prop. 70: Yes - Greenhouse Gas Reduction Reserve Fund.

Prop. 71: Yes - Ballot Measures: effective date.

Prop. 72: No Recommendation


California State Senate
District / Candidate

2: Mike McGuire (D)

4: Open

6: Richard Pan (D)(I)

8: Open

10: Bob Wieckowski (D)(I)

12: Anna Caballero (D)

14: Open

16: Ruth Musser-Lopez (D)

18: Robert Hertzberg (D)(I)

20: Connie Leyva (D)

22: Open

24: Maria Elena Durazo (D)

26: Ben Allen (D)

28: Open

30: Holly Mitchell (D)(I)

32: Open

34: Tom Umberg (D)

36: Open

38: Open

40: Ben Hueso (D)(I)

California State Assembly

District / Candidate

1: Open

2: Jim Wood (D)

3: Sonia Aery (D)

4: Cecelia Aguiar-Curry (D)

5: Open

6: Open

7: Kevin McCarty (D)

8: Ken Cooley (D)

9: Jim Cooper (D)(I)

10: Mark Levine (D)(I)

11: Jim fraizer

12: Open

13: Open

14: Tim Grayson (D)(I)

15: Open

16: Open

17: David Chiu (D)(I)

18: Rob Bonta (D)(I)

19: Phil Ting (D)(I)

20: Bill Quirk (D)(I)

21: Adam Gray (D)(I)

22: Kevin Mullin (D)(I)

23: Open

24: Marc Berman (D)(I)

25: Kansen Chu (D)(I)

26: Open

27: Ash Kalra (D)

28: Evan Low (D)(I)

29: Mark Stone (D)(I)

30: Open

31: Joaquin Arambula (D)(I)

32: Rudy Salas (D)

33: Open

34: Open

35: Open

36: Steven Fox (D)

37: Monique Limon (D)

38: Open

39: Open

40: Open

41: Chris Holden (D)

41: Chris Holden (D)

42: Open

43: Laura Friedman (D)

44: Jacqui Irwin (D)

45: Open

46: Adrin Nazarian (D)(I)

47: Eloise Gomez Reyes (D)(I)

48: Blanca Rubio (D)(I)

49: Ed Chau (D)(I)

50: Richard Bloom (D)(I)

51: Wendy Carrillo (D)(I)

52: Freddie Rodriguez (D)(I)

53: Miguel Santiago (D)(I)

54: Sydney Kamlager (D)(I)

55: Open

56: Eduardo Garcia (D)(I)

57: Ian Calderon (D)(I)

58: Christina Garcia (D)(I)

59: Reggie Jones-Sawyer (D)(I)

60: Sabrina Cervantes (D)(I)

61: Jose Medina (D)(I)

62: Autumn Burke (D)(I)

63: Anthony Rendon (D)

64: Mike Gipson (D)(I)

65: Sharon Quirk-Silva (D)(I)

66: Al Muratsuchi (D)(I)

67: Open

68: Open

69: Tom Daly (D)(I)

70: Patrick O’Donnell (D)(I)

71: Open

72: Open

73: Open

74: Open

75: Open

76: Open

77: Open

78: Todd Gloria (D)

79: Shirley Weber (D)(I)

80: Lorena Gonzalez Fletcher (D)(I)