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JD_JUAN_VARGAS.JPGCalling it his "victory speech," Juan Vargas has released a statement declaring that it's time to move past the hard-fought Democratic primary with Mary Salas and "begin the fight to reform California government."

Vargas and Salas finished in a virtual dead heat last month in bidding for the San Diego Senate seat of termed-out Sen. Denise Moreno Ducheny.

Vargas noted that Salas, a Chula Vista assemblywoman, conceded defeat Wednesday night. Their 40th Senate District primary proved to be one of the Democratic Party's most contentious in California.

The following is Vargas' statement as he looks toward the Nov. 2 election, when he will face Republican Brian Hendry in a district that tilts decidedly Democratic:

"The time has come to take a stand -- to blaze a bold new trail and once again make California the state of possibilities.

"I know we can do this if we work together.

"As one of 10 children, born and raised on a small farm, I leaned from my parents at a young age that anything is possible and that no dream is too big if you work hard to achieve it...

"As your senator, I will passionately promote policies that reflect a vision for the future in which we measure our progress not merely in the quantity of our goods but in the quality of our lives - the purity of the air we breathe and the water we drink; the safety of our streets and the excellence of our schools and healthcare system.

"Thank you once again for joining me in this cause. Let's win in November and turn California around."

PHOTO CREDIT: Then Assemblyman Juan Vargas, D-San Diego, Aug. 18, 2003. Sacramento Bee file photo.



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