Mayor of Fresno won't seek US Senate seat

AP News
Posted: Feb 28, 2015 1:02 PM

FRESNO, Calif. (AP) — The Republican mayor of the California city of Fresno has decided not to run for the United States Senate, an adviser said.

Mayor Ashley Swearengin will not seek the seat being vacated by Democratic Sen. Barbara Boxer in 2016, the Los Angeles Times ( ) and Sacramento Bee ( ) reported Saturday.

"She's letting people know this weekend that she's decided against a run," Swearengin adviser Tim Clark told The Bee ahead of the state Republican Party's convention in Sacramento.

Swearengin, who lost a bid for state controller in 2014, is the latest Republican to steer clear of the race.

There is no competitive Republican candidate currently seeking the seat, and while a Field Poll last week found that former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice would be an automatic front-runner, she doesn't want the job.

In a University of Southern California Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll released Friday, Swearengin received the largest support among potential Republican candidates: 9 percent of registered voters who were surveyed. But only 19 percent of voters surveyed could identify Swearengin, who was elected mayor in 2008.

Democratic Attorney General Kamala Harris, who is the only major candidate who has announced she is running, received 28 percent support in the poll.

Nearly a quarter of voters were undecided.