May 2022 Newsletter Articles

California GOP Endorses Dahle, Hochman & Chen for Top State Offices


The CAGOP endorsed six candidates for statewide office at its spring convention in Anaheim last weekend.

Senator Brian Dahle secured the endorsement for Governor after four rounds of delegate voting.  He prevailed in four-candidate field after the candidate receiving the lowest number of votes in each round was eliminated.  Dahle previously served as the Republican Leader in the California State Assembly and as Supervisor in Lassen County.  A 60% super majority of voting delegates was needed in order to receive the CAGOP endorsement.

Nathan Hochman, former prosecutor and Assistant Attorney General under George W. Bush, was endorsed for California Attorney General.  Coming into the convention, Hochman had raised over $1.74M and promises to be a competitive challenger to the Democrat incumbent who is seen as a progressive ally of District Attorneys in San Francisco and LA who are now facing recall elections.

Lanhee Chen, on leave from his post as a Hoover Institution Fellow, was endorsed by acclamation for the office of Controller.  As the sole Republican running for an open seat, he has united diverse elements of the Republican Party and raised over $2M in the process.  He was recently endorsed by the Los Angeles Times as a needed check on the one-party Democratic rule we now have in Sacramento.

Angela Underwood Jacobs was also endorsed by acclamation at the convention as the only Republican who qualified for consideration after receiving over 200 nominations from CAGOP delegates.  Jacobs combines experience as an elected official with a compelling personal story that led her to run for the office.

Lance Christensen was endorsed for the non-partisan office of Superintendent of Public Instruction.  Lance works as Vice President of Education Policy at the California Policy Center and served many years as a chief of staff in the California Legislature.  Lance points out that if he receives 50%+1 of the votes in the June primary, he will be elected.  This provides a unique opportunity for Republicans as voter turnout in the primary is generally lower than that of the general election.

Finally, attorney Mark Meuser, who ran previously for Secretary of State was endorsed for United States Senate.  As the leading fundraiser among the challengers to the appointed incumbent, Meuser promises an energetic campaign.  Voters may remember the California Bike Tour he conducted during his previous race for statewide office.

There was no endorsement for Treasurer, Secretary of State or Insurance Commissioner as no candidate reached the 60% required threshold.

Only Lanhee Chen is guaranteed a spot in the top two, so it is important for Republicans to unite around these endorsed candidates to make sure we have a strong Republican ticket in November.

Peter Verbica Runs for Board of Equalization

By: Roger Riffenburgh

Santa Cruz County financial advisor and community leader Peter Verbica is running for the state Board of Equalization in the coastal District 2.  As taxpayer advocate endorsed by the Howard Jarvis Taxpayer Association PAC, the contrast with his two Democrat opponents could not be greater.

Peter says “The Board of Equalization needs a clear-eyed fiscal conservative and fair advocate for taxpayers. I’ve seen how unchecked county tax assessors can attempt to do an end-run around the protections of Proposition 13. As a member of the BOE, I won’t let that happen.”

Trained in business, real estate, law, and as a Certified Financial Planner®, Peter brings extensive professional experience to the Board of Equalization.  He is currently a managing partner for two investment management firms.  He worked previously as an Assistant Vice President at Merrill Lynch, in real estate, as a Chief Financial Officer, and in funding tech companies.  He taught as an Adjunct Associate Professor in the Economics Department at San Jose State University.  He is also a published author.

Peter has been active in the community.  As a volunteer, he has actively supported schools, military service men and women, youth ballet, the symphony, Asian-American culture, and California State Parks.

The state Board of Equalization has four elected members plus the state’s Controller.  Each elected member represents nearly 10 million people.  The Second District includes the coastal strip of the state from the Oregon border down the coast to Ventura County.  It includes the entire Bay Area, except for Solano County.  (See the map.)  The seat will be open because the incumbent is running for higher office.

The state Board of Equalization was dramatically restructured in 2017 by new legislation, as a result of audit reports showing misallocation of funds and misuse of staff.  The BoE retains its core constitutional duties, including “adjusting property tax assessments, assessing taxes on insurers, and assessing/collecting excise taxes on alcoholic beverages.”  The collection of sales and excise taxes is now handled by the Department of Tax and Fee Administration, while the Office of Tax Appeals hears appeals on other tax matters.

Peter Verbica grew up on a cattle ranch in the hills of Northern California, where he learned a strong work ethic and an appreciation for the land. He graduated from Bellarmine College Preparatory in San Jose. He earned his BA at Santa Clara University, a JD from Santa Clara University School of Law, and an MS in Real Estate Development at MIT.

His family donated the heart of Henry W. Coe, Jr. State Park, which is now California’s second largest state park. It’s located in the hills east of Morgan Hill and is named after Peter’s great grandfather.

Peter is an unabashed advocate of cowboy culture and enjoys creative writing, hiking, and tennis. He is married and has four daughters.  He’s proud that his oldest daughter served in the US Navy and that his second daughter helped with deforestation issues in the Panamanian rain forest with the Smithsonian Institution.  You can learn more about Peter Verbica’s campaign on his campaign website.

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