The state Senate race has turned into a contest as Supervisor Jane Kim is expected to officially announce her bid Wednesday morning to challenge Supervisor Scott Wiener for the 11th District seat representing San Francisco and northern San Mateo County.
Wiener on July 1 put speculation to rest he would run for the seat. Not only did he announce his bid for the higher office, but he secured a long list of endorsements, including from current seat holder Sen. Mark Leno, who is termed out next year.
Supervisor Jane Kim, who was also long expected to run for the seat, is expected to make it official Wednesday morning with a formal announcement. The news seemed to get ahead of her with the establishment of a Kim for Senate 2016 committee registered with the Secretary of State, not going unnoticed Tuesday.
Kim said she would be making a statement about the race Wednesday morning.
Kim, who is considered the progressive candidate in the contest, has often sparred with Wiener, the more moderate candidate, on a number of issues at the Board of Supervisors from building a new jail to how to regulate short-term rentals.
Notably, Kim has endorsed Aaron Peskin, who is backed by tenant groups, in this November’s District 3 race, while Wiener has endorsed Mayor Ed Lee’s appointee Julie Christensen. Both Wiener and Kim were first elected to the Board of Supervisors in November 2010, Wiener to represent the Castro neighborhood and Kim to represent Tenderloin and SoMa.
Kim’s expected announcement comes just days after she had a large political victory with the passage by the board of tenant eviction protections.
Wiener’s campaign manager Maggie Muir said Kim enters the race “behind the eight ball,” noting that Wiener announced back in July and has already amassed close to half a million dollars in contributions. Campaign finance filings have yet been filed and aren’t due until the end of the year.
In a statement by text message, Wiener said, “I welcome Jane to the race and look forward to a great debate about the future of our city, region and state.”