FRESNO, Calif. — George Radanovich, a Republican who is in his eighth term in Congress, announced Tuesday that will not seek re-election next year.
Radanovich, 54, said in a news release that he stepping down from the 19th Congressional District seat to be with his wife, Ethie, as she continues to battle ovarian cancer.
“My family needs me, and I intend to be by their side to win this battle,” he said.
As Radanovich steps down, he is endorsing state Sen. Jeff Denham as his replacement. The statement noted that Radanovich's congressional district and Denham's senate district share more than 100,000 constituents.
But Denham isn't the only Republican seeking to replace Radanovich. For months, former Fresno Mayor Jim Patterson has been exploring a run against Radanovich. On Tuesday he made if official.
“I did not desire to have a political fight with a friend during a time when his wife was ill,” Patterson said. “That was heavily weighing on my decision whether I was going to do this or not.”
Patterson and Denham, however, may not be the only ones who seek the seat. For one, Fresno City Council Member Larry Westerlund has been calling influential Republicans about a potential run.
The GOP primary almost certainly will select the next congressman from the 19th Congressional District. Republicans enjoy a commanding 44%-37% voter registration advantage in the district, which sweeps through all or part of Fresno, Stanislaus, Tuolumne, Mariposa and Madera counties.
Read the full story at fresnobee.com