Former Republican Sen. Sam Aanestad is weighing a run for the Northern California congressional seat being vacated by retiring GOP Rep. Wally Herger.
The Penn Valley Republican said he learned of Herger's decision after returning home from Mexico, where he had been vacationing without access to his cell phone or lap top, several days ago. Since then, he has been "making phone calls to see if there is any support" for a run for the newly drawn 1st Congressional District.
Aanestad, who ran unsuccessfully for lieutenant governor in 2010, said the addition of a new partner at his Grass Valley oral surgery practice has given him the time and flexibility to run. He said the 12 years he spent serving in overlapping state Senate and Assembly districts makes him a good fit for the House district, which runs from Yuba City to the Oregon border.
"I already know most of the local issues of each of the areas and the people involved in the history," he said. "It wouldn't be much of a learning process in terms of getting up to date on what the issues are for the district."
News that he is considering entering the race was first reported by FlashReport publisher Jon Fleischman on Twitter. GOP Sen. Doug LaMalfa, who succeeded Aanestad in the Senate, has already announced plans to run for the congressional seat with Herger's backing.