Politics

Matt Gunderson Speaks About His State Senate Race and Catherine Blakespear’s Failures at SANDAG

With incumbent Senator Pat Bates term-limited, a new State Senator will represent much of coastal San Diego and parts of Orange County which is currently the 36th district. Due to redistricting, some of the district moved south into parts of the city of San Diego and is now the 38th district. Making his case is Matt Gunderson, a businessman from Mission Viejo

Gunderson has been an owner of car dealerships in Orange County. Gunderson said in an interview with KUSI that he recently sold those businesses but is staying to, “fight for the California dream”. Gunderson highlighted his ties to San Diego, having employed and served many San Diegans. His wife was also born in San Diego and is the great-great-granddaughter of Geroge Marston. Marston was one of the major backers of projects such as Balboa and Presidio Park. Marston is regarded as “San Diego’s First Citizen” and has a statue at Balboa Park. Gunderson says that his main focus is affordability. Gunderson says that it costs way too much to live in California. He also says that he would like to see more local control and power drawn away from Sacramento. 

Gunderson’s main opponent is Encinitas Mayor Catherine Blakespear. He says that Blakespear is far too liberal for the district and would only add to the problems in this state. He pointed to her position on SANDAG. Blakespear is currently the chair of SANDAG and has refused to address the scandals that have plagued SANDAG in recent months. Gunderson says that Blakespear’s actions show a lack of transparency and accountability, “ I think how she’s handled this SANDAG issue is an example of how she would likely handle things in Sacramento.” SANDAG was recently caught paying for lavish dinners and drinks with taxpayer money which has caused many on the board and elected officials throughout the county to call for the resignation or removal of CEO Hasan Ikhrata. Gunderson also highlighted the fact that Blakespear supported SB 9 and 10. SB 9 and 10 took away local control regarding housing. Gunderson says that Blakespear is being “disingenuous” with voters regarding the issues with SANDAG and her refusal to talk about the issue is a problem. 

Gunderson says that he will bring transparency to Sacramento, something that Sacramento has been lacking for a long time.