Politics, government and public life for Southern California

Independent Mike Meza endorses Republican Joe Gardner in Democratic 48th Assembly District

Roger Hernandez Joe Gardner

Roger Hernandez Office/Joe Gardner Campaign

Assemblyman Roger Hernandez, left, is running for reelection against Joe Gardner, right, a retired member of the Santa Monica Police Department.

It’s the homestretch for candidates whose names appear on the Nov. 6 ballot, which means everyone is looking for an advantage. In some cases, that advantage can be as simple as an endorsement from a former opponent. 

Take the 48th Assembly District race for example. Democrat Assemblyman Roger Hernandez is running for his second two-year term of office, but his district lines have been slightly re-drawn. He finished the June primary behind his Republican challenger, Joe Gardner, a retired member of the Santa Monica Police Department. Gardner picked up 46 percent of the vote, compared to Hernandez’s 43 percent — despite party registration in the district favoring Democrats by 18 percentage points.

The primary had a third challenger, Mike Meza, who ran as an independent. Meza won 11 percent of the vote in the primary and has endorsed Gardner in the November runoff.