Berkeley City Councilman Jesse Arreguín may have inadvertently announced his candidacy for mayor Monday when he changed the name of his Facebook page from “Jesse Arreguín for City Council,” to “Jesse Arreguín for Mayor.”
The change triggered an automatic notice to all of his followers, including Berkeleyside, which then sent out the following tweet at 3:48 p.m.:
— Berkeleyside (@berkeleyside) October 19, 2015
Arreguín was rushing around Tuesday and said he could not comment on his candidacy but would get back to Berkeleyside later in the week. He told the Bay Area News Group he intended to formally declare on Thursday with an email blast and news release and would have a new website next week.
Arreguín is the first to announce his candidacy for the 2016 race. When Tom Bates was reelected in 2012, he declared that it would be his final term as mayor.
No others have formally declared, but many expect that City Councilman Laurie Capitelli will also run for mayor.
Arreguín, who represents District 4, the downtown area, is in his third term as councilman. He was first elected in 2008 and holds the distinction of being the first Latino elected to council, as well as the youngest elected. He graduated from UC Berkeley and has long been politically active, according to his official biography.
“The son and grandson of farm workers, he worked to educate others about the life and legacy of César Chávez and has modeled his life after Chávez’s commitment to non-violent social change,” according to his city website. “Over the past 20 years, Jesse has been involved in political activism and public service in a number of ways: such as working at the age of 9 to rename Army Street in San Francisco after his hero Cesar Chávez; fighting for workers rights; and serving as a member of the San Francisco Youth Commission advising the Mayor and Board of Supervisors on issues relating to children and youth.”
Arreguín, who served as a legislative aide to Councilman Kriss Worthington before his own election to council, is part of a progressive trio on the council that often finds itself in opposition to Bates and the rest of the council. However, Arreguín votes with the Bates side more often than do Worthington and Councilman Max Anderson.
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