SAN DIEGO, CALIF.- Make no mistake, Ricardo Lara is a popular legislator in Sacramento.
Though some agree he endorses far left positions for undocumented immigrants, Lara has established himself as a champion for their rights.
Fitting since Lara was raised by Mexican immigrants in East Los Angeles, which he now represents as state senator for District 33.
In 2012, Lara became the first openly gay person of color to be elected to the California State Senate.
Lara recently chaired the influential Senate Appropriations Committee and notably authored the Health for All Kids Act, which Gov. Jerry Brown signed in 2015, to extend Medi-Cal to undocumented children. He has passed legislation for cleaner air and to protect the civil rights of Californians. Author of the Super Pollutant Reduction Act (Senate Bill 1383) in 2016, the bill created the nation's toughest law on black carbon, methane, and fluorocarbons that contribute to global warming.
Lara is an advocate for single-payer health care in California and authored a bill that the state Senate approved in 2017 to establish such a system.
Indeed Lara’s bid for insurance commissioner has highlighted his continued support for universal health care, “Every student is going to confront our broken healthcare system, where we overpay for the most basic care,” Lara recently noted. “I believe healthcare should be a right for everyone, which is why I will support universal coverage.”
Lara's platform as described on his campaign site, includes health care, education, the environment, LGBTQ+ equality and other progressive issues.
Lara has garnered endorsements from several of the best-known political actors in California, including U.S. Sen. Kamala Harris, Gov. Jerry Brown and Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom.
Unusual Ad Campaign
This week Lara began airing an unusual ad that repeats one of Poizner’s anti-illegal immigration commercials from 2010 when he ran for Governor.
Lara is using the spot to point out Poizner “was a registered Republican until right before the race for Insurance Commissioner,” Lara said in an interview. “He ran on a record to divide us, and now he flips on those issues.”
The 43-year-old Lara sees his time as a Democratic legislator as a plus in his bid for insurance commissioner. The office “touches the life of every Californian,” Lara said. “My record speaks for itself for its commitment to consumer protection. I’ve taken on difficult issues in the Legislature and brought people together to find a solution.”