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State Sen. Leland Yee officially threw his hat into the San Francisco mayoral race today by submitting signatures to City Hall.

The San Francisco Democrat submitted a batch of 4,200 voter signatures, bringing his total to nearly 14,000 -- roughly 4,000 more than is needed to qualify for the ballot without paying a filing fee.

"I am looking forward to the next stage of our campaign and continuing to talk with voters about improving our public schools, our environment, and our economy," Yee said in a written statement.

Yee is seeking the gavel held by interim Mayor Edwin M. Lee, who is not currently a candidate in the Nov. 8 election. Lee replaced Gavin Newsom in January after Newsom was elected lieutenant governor.

Yee will be termed out of the Senate in 2014. He does not need to give up his legislative seat to run for mayor, so he is assured of a Capitol job if he loses the local election.

A child psychologist, Yee was elected to the Senate in 2006. He previously served three terms in the Assembly. His resume also includes service on San Francisco's Board of Supervisors and its school board.



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