Catherine Blakespear Declares Victory in California’s 38th State Senate District
Gunderson concedes; Blakespear’s victory marks the first time Democrats have represented North San Diego County and South Orange County in the State Senate since 1882
Encinitas, California — On Thursday, November 17, Senator-elect Catherine Blakespear released the following statement:
“I am tremendously grateful to the people of California’s 38th State Senate District for electing me as their next Senator. From Pacific Beach to Mission Viejo, the people of this district chose to defend a woman’s right to choose, protect our environment, support small business owners and the working class, strengthen our gun laws, and ensure a clean, reliable water supply. They chose a message of hope — a message that we can accomplish anything and make life better if we come together and try.
Our great state has no shortage of challenges, and now we must address them head-on. These challenges include the homelessness epidemic, wildfires that destroy our precious forests, a never-ending drought, the soaring cost of housing, high gas prices and inflation, and aging infrastructure, among other things.
The people of California are sending me to the Senate to address these very real problems. I am here to take action. We have a mandate in this state to pass common-sense legislation that will make a difference in people’s everyday lives. Now it’s time to get to work. We may not do it all in one year, or even in one term, but we will tackle these problems head on.
To every citizen of the 38th District, whether you supported my opponent or me, I want you to know that my door will always be open. I welcome your views, your ideas, and your solutions. In the words of President Kennedy, ‘Let us not seek the Democratic answer or the Republican answer, but the right answer.’ That’s what this moment calls for.
To that end, I would like to offer my recognition to Matt Gunderson, his family, and his team on running a hard-fought campaign. It is a leap of faith to run for office, and there’s the hard reality that there can be only one winner. I thank him for the sacrifices made and the worthy issues he raised in this race. I wish him success and send my best regards to his family for the future.
I would like to thank my family for the unwavering support they’ve provided throughout may 8 years in local elected office, and especially in this last campaign. I am humbled by their loyalty, commitment and pride.
I would like to offer the biggest thank you to my dedicated supporters who helped run one of the most efficient campaigns in recent memory by knocking on every door, making hundreds of thousands of phone calls, staffing every rally, and distributing thousands of yard signs. I am so humbled by the time and talent they have so generously donated to our cause. In the end, this was one of the costliest legislative races in the state’s history. We were outspent… but there is no price tag for passion, for hard work, and for sincerely believing that the future we believe in is worth fighting for. To my campaign staff — Katie, Duane, Kevin, Jeff, Aria, Scott, Matt, Sarah, Kelli, Kerry, Dave, Lucia, Joanna, John, and Sonia — I couldn’t have asked for a better team. They stood by my side and had my back for more than a year and did a stellar job from start to finish.
And most importantly, thank you to Senate President Pro Tem Toni Atkins and her tremendously talented team! We are so fortunate to have her as our leader, and she did an amazing job defending and expanding the Democratic Senate Majority. I’ll never forget the people and organizations, including environmentalists, women’s groups, labor unions, Democratic clubs, and others who took a bet on me and supported me from the start.
The people have placed great trust in me — great trust in all of us. And as we celebrate the fruits of victory, let us not forget the lofty goals we aspire to. And whenever we doubt ourselves, remember that immortal slogan, ‘Yes we can,’ which defines our spirt as a people.”
Blakespear is a fourth-generation Encinitan whose great-grandparents put roots down in the area nearly 100 years ago. She has been the Mayor of the City of Encinitas for six years, and an attorney for 16 years. In addition to leading her city as mayor, she serves as the Chair of SANDAG, the county’s powerful transportation agency, and as a board member on the San Diego County’s Airport Authority. She and her husband have two teenage children.
The newly-drawn 38th Senate District includes the communities of Pacific Beach, La Jolla, Carmel Valley, Pacific Highlands Ranch, Del Mar, Solana Beach, Rancho Santa Fe, Fairbanks Ranch, Encinitas, Elfin Forest, Carlsbad, Vista, Oceanside, Camp Pendleton, Rancho Mission Viejo, Ladera Ranch, San Juan Capistrano, Coto De Caza, Rancho Santa Margarita, Mission Viejo, and Laguna Hills.