Torie Osborn Picks Up Julia Brownley Endorsement in Bid for State Assembly Seat

June 20th, 2011

Posted on, by Tom Fauquher, Sharon Cotal, and Jonathan Friedman.

Current officeholder Julia Brownley announces her support for Osborn to succeed her at a campaign kickoff event in Pacific Palisades.

Liberal activist Torie Osborn received the backing of Assemblywoman Julia Brownley on Sunday in her bid to be the next representative of the state Assembly’s 41st District, which includes Malibu. Brownley, the 41st District’s current representative, endorsed Osborn for the 2012 race at a campaign kickoff event in Pacific Palisades.

“It was a very easy choice and a quick conclusion when Torie asked me,” Brownley told the event attendees.

Osborn had already picked up several significant endorsements, including Sheila Kuehl (who was the 41st District representative from 1994 to 2000), Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and Los Angeles City Councilman Bill Rosendahl.

“This is a big, big deal to have the sitting member give you her support,” Kuehl said.

Osborn has worked in Villaraigosa’s office and has known him since about 1991 when she headed the Los Angeles Gay & Lesbian Center.

“Torie is a progressive, but she’ll be able to reach out and work with people across the aisle too,” Villaraigosa said. “On behalf of myself and anyone I have the tiniest influence over, I want to stand up for someone who wants to change the world.”

Brownley introduced Osborn to a crowd of more than 100 supporters as a “seasoned candidate” with more than 40 years of experience working for social change. Osborn then outlined her priorities for change in California on the issues of education, the environment, health care and civil rights. She supports raising taxes to achieve these goals.

“I spent all those years fighting homophobia, it’s time to fight taxophobia,” Osborn said.

She said she believes the time is right for her to join the state Assembly.

“I’ve loved my decades of advocating for change mostly from the outside of government, but there is a season for everything and I feel called to this leadership role in these tough times,” Osborn said.

The campaign event was a fundraiser for seed money for the yearlong campaign leading up to the primary election in June 2012. Osborn’s main opponent at this time is Santa Monica Mayor Richard Bloom, a fellow Democrat.

“What makes this impressive is not that this is a year out, but that people don’t know exactly what the boundaries are going to be, yet despite that, people seem to be rallying around Torie,” said Mike Bonin, Osborn’s campaign adviser. “Torie is kind of a hero for L.A.’s progressive movement.”

The draft maps for California’s new legislative districts were released Friday. The proposal has Malibu staying in the Democratic-dominated 41st Assembly District, although portions of unincorporated Malibu—including Pepperdine University—would be moved to a district with Thousand Oaks.

In its current form, the 41st District covers a wide area that includes portions of the Valley and Ventura County. The new plan has the district stretching along the coast from Malibu to Marina del Rey (the current boundary is on the south end of Santa Monica) with an inland attachment that includes new additions West Hollywood and Beverly Hills.

The top two vote-getters from the 41st District primary contest, regardless of party affiliation, will face off in the November general election. Brownley is not eligible to run due to term limits.