California Assembly Republicans elect Escondido's Marie Waldron new leader
California Assembly Republicans on Thursday elected a new leader, Assemblywoman Marie Waldron of Escondido, who said the minority party needs to take action to end its decline.
Waldron takes over as Assembly Republican leader from Assemblyman Brian Dahle of Bieber, who is stepping down from the role to run for a state Senate seat being vacated by incumbent Ted Gaines, who was elected to the state Board of Equalization on Tuesday.
The share of registered Republican voters in California has declined steadily from 35.5 percent in 1998 to 24 percent this year, and the party appears to have lost seats in the Legislature after Tuesday’s election, although votes are still being counted.
“As a caucus and as a party we need to seriously consider why our party continues to decline,” Waldron said in a statement. “We need an aggressive, new approach to message our values, strengthen, grow and expand our party and our caucus as we stand for hardworking Californians. I look forward to leading this effort.”
Waldron, who was elected to the Assembly in 2012, co-owns a custom screen-printing and apparel business with her husband in Escondido. She served for 14 years on the Escondido City Council and also has served as deputy mayor in Escondido.
Waldron also worked for NBC Sports in New York and the New York Mets, where she managed promotions and advertising.
The Legislature will hold a brief organizational meeting next month but begins its new session in January.