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UPDATE: Wilk picks up statewide YR endorsement; local group disputes it

Posted: February 8, 2012 4:46 p.m.
Updated: February 8, 2012 10:54 a.m.


The California Young Republican Federation has endorsed Republican Scott Wilk for the 38th District Assembly race, although the Santa Clarita Valley Young Republicans are disputing the endorsement, saying it’s too early to select candidates.

In the open June primary, Wilk is expected to face fellow Republicans Patricia McKeon, wife of Congressman Howard “Buck” McKeon; local high school board member Paul Strickland; and Democrat and San Fernando Valley businessman Edward Headington.

The two top vote-getters will appear on the November presidential ballot.

“Scott Wilk has fought in the trenches of the conservative movement for decades,” said California Young Republican Federation Executive Director Ashley Ingram in a statement. “We know we can count on him because we’ve worked alongside him and seen him in action. He is the kind of can-do leader we need.”

Wilk, a longtime Santa Clarita Valley resident and College of the Canyons trustee, has worked with Congressman Howard “Buck” McKeon in the past as a district director.

Wilk has not yet formally announced his candidacy for the seat being vacated by Assemblyman Cameron Smyth, R-Santa Clarita, but he has said he will run.

Besides the statewide Young Republican Federation endorsement, Wilk was endorsed by both the Ventura County Young Republicans and the San Fernando Valley Young Republicans.

But in a statement late Wednesday, Santa Clarita Valley Young Republicans President Devon Cormier blasted the endorsements, saying the state group should not have acted without consulting the local organization.

“Mr. Wilk has not requested or received an endorsement for the 38th Assembly seat from the SCV Young Republicans,” Cormier said in a statement, adding that neither the Ventura County group nor the San Fernando Valley group falls fully within the 38th Assembly District.

“Filing has not even opened, and there are currently two other Republican candidates vying for the office. They deserve to have the opportunity to be considered.”

Cormier said the Santa Clarita Valley Young Republicans have officially petitioned the California Young Republicans Federation for a revocation of the endorsement until filing has closed and all chartered clubs in the 38th Assembly District have had the opportunity to consider endorsement.

The California Young Republican Federation is the official statewide organization for young adult Republicans between the ages 18 to 40, according to the group’s website. Santa Clarita Valley Young Republicans are chartered through the California Young Republican Federation, said Cormier.

“The fight for the future of our state affects the next generation more than anyone, and I am committed to fighting for the things that need to get done to change the direction of our state,” Wilk said in a statement included in the endorsement announcement.

I’m not running because I don’t want to pay 10 cents for a grocery bag,” Wilk said in a swipe at Patricia McKeon, who has said supermarkets charging for plastic bags was among the issues that prompted her to run.

“I’m running to tackle the big challenges ahead like balancing our budget and reforming the way the state taxes and regulates business.”





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