Political Notebook

Swearengin endorses Bredefeld for City Council

Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin on Tuesday endorsed Garry Bredefeld for the District 6 Fresno City Council seat. Lee Brand, who currently holds the seat, will reach his term limit at the end of the year.
Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin on Tuesday endorsed Garry Bredefeld for the District 6 Fresno City Council seat. Lee Brand, who currently holds the seat, will reach his term limit at the end of the year. The Fresno Bee

Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin, looking to support candidates who share her vision for the city and will carry it on after she leaves office this year, is endorsing Garry Bredefeld for the District 6 City Council seat.

Bredefeld is seeking to recapture the northeast Fresno seat he held from 1997 through the end of 2000. He left office Jan. 2, 2001 after passing on seeking reelection to make an unsuccessful mayoral run in 2000. He’s been out of politics since then.

Looking at Bredefeld’s time in office, as well as his current political positions, Swearengin said Bredefeld is the best person to replace Lee Brand, who reaches his term limit at the end of the year and is seeking to replace Swearengin as mayor. Also running for the seat are Holly Carter, a business owner and former Fresno County GOP executive director, and Jeremy Pearce, a small business owner and Elvis tribute artist.

In my opinion, Garry Bredefeld is proven from serving on the Fresno City Council in the past.

Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin

“In my opinion, Garry Bredefeld is proven from serving on the Fresno City Council in the past,” Swearengin said in a Tuesday news conference outside Fresno City Hall. “His priorities very much line up with the priorities we’ve sought to pursue here in my time in office.”

For instance, Bredefeld was a big supporter of downtown revitalization – an key part of Swearengin’s mayoral efforts – during his city council term.

Bredefeld said he was “extremely honored, and, frankly, humbled,” to have Swearengin’s endorsement.

From the moment she was elected in 2008, Swearengin said she knew “the work of moving our city forward would take many years, and that the work would have to be continued by people well past my time in office.”

That is now Swearengin’s mindset as she enters her final year in office.

Besides District 6 on the City Council, Steve Brandau in District 2 and Paul Caprioglio in District 4 are also up for reelection. There is also Swearengin’s successor as mayor.

It is unknown at this time whether she will weigh in with endorsements in any of those races, but based on Swearengin’s comments it seems likely.

“I’ve known for a long time the recommendations I’ll make this year for those seeking office in the City of Fresno would be among my most important decisions and my most important recommendations to the people of the community,” Swearengin said.

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