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Edgar Garcia returns as write-in candidate for mayor

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Edgar Garcia has decided – again – to join the race for mayor, but this time he will campaign as a write-in candidate.

Garcia, a tax preparer in Oak Park, returned to the city clerk’s office Wednesday morning to complete paperwork for a write-in candidacy for mayor in the June 5 primary election.

He originally jumped into the race in November, but the momentum was short-lived: Just six weeks later, reports were surfacing in the media that he was dropping out of the race.

When the March 9 filing deadline passed, the city clerk’s office reported that Garcia had in fact submitted all of the required paperwork to remain in the race, but his candidate petition fell short of the required 20 valid voter signatures, and he didn’t qualify for the ballot.

Despite the setback, Garcia said Wednesday that he still has his sights set on the mayor’s seat.

“I gave up at first, but I keep looking at what is happening (at City Hall) and at the other candidates, and I feel I needed to keep going,” Garcia said. “I feel that I need to give it a try.”

Garcia said he believes the other candidates for mayor don’t have what it takes to make the best decisions for city residents.

Garcia said he believes the role of mayor requires a more personal touch than simply being an administrator and that requires having more “heart.”

“They (the other candidates) don’t have that, I don’t think,” Garcia said.

Garcia has his work cut out for him as a write-in candidate.

According to Assistant City Clerk Stephanie Mizuno, the last write-in candidate to vie for the mayor’s seat was Robert Drumgoole in 2008 – a race in which Drumgoole received only three votes.

Prior to that, there has not been a single write-in candidate going back more than 25 years – possibly longer – Mizuno said Wednesday.

A write-in candidate has never won the seat in the city’s history – but Garcia said that doesn’t intimidate him.

“I think if a person is going to run in the race, they should run to win,” Garcia said.

The deadline for submitting a write-in candidate application with the city clerk is May 22, Mizuno said.

To qualify for the race, Garcia will need to re-submit all of the candidate forms he originally submitted, along with another petition with 20 valid voter signatures.

If he succeeds in entering the race, he will join a field that includes incumbent Kevin Johnson, municipal finance manager Jonathan Rewers, insurance broker Richard Jones and bounty hunter Leonard Padilla.

Melissa Corker is a staff reporter for The Sacramento Press. Follow her on Twitter @MelissaCorker.

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