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Politics & Policy

David Campos won’t campaign in Assembly election rematch with Matt Haney

David Campos addresses the crowd at El Rio after ceding the District 17 Assembly race to Matt Haney in San Francisco on Tuesday, April 19, 2022. | Nick Otto | Source: Nick Otto for The Standard

Fresh off a resounding defeat, David Campos confirmed in a text message Friday that he will not run an active campaign to challenge Matt Haney in a rematch of their state Assembly special election.

In an odd quirk of timing, there will be four elections this year for the Assembly District 17 seat after David Chiu resigned from the post last fall seat to become San Francisco’s city attorney. Haney won Tuesday’s special election runoff in a landslide, reeling in 63% of the vote. But he will need to run again in June and November to serve beyond the remainder of this year and secure a two-year term running through 2024.

Campos’ name will still appear on the June ballot because he pulled papers to run last year, before Chiu announced he was relinquishing his seat in the Assembly. However, Campos’ candidacy will apparently be in name only, as this week’s results suggest voters have given Haney a clear mandate that the job is his.

Campos’ decision was first reported by the Chronicle.

California election law requires Haney to run for a full term in a primary this summer, and the top two finishers in that race will automatically advance to a runoff election in November. In addition to Haney and Campos, Republican Bill Shireman, an environmental solutions entrepreneur, has pulled papers to run in the primary.

It’s not clear if Campos will return to his job as District Attorney Chesa Boudin’s chief of staff. Boudin is facing a recall election in June, so that position might be a bit tenuous. Campos reportedly told the Chronicle that he will take some time before making a decision on returning to the DA’s office.

His defeat Tuesday was the second time in a decade he has lost a runoff for the Assembly 17 seat. He previously fell short in a close race against Chiu in 2014.

In an interview Thursday, Haney told The Standard he hoped to “work together” with Campos in the future, and Campos suggested that could be a possibility in a tweet he sent later that evening.