A California assemblyman who lost his committee assignments amid domestic violence allegations is taking an extended absence from the Legislature for undisclosed medical reasons.
Assemblyman Roger Hernández, D-Baldwin Park, was absent Monday as members returned to the Assembly floor on Monday to launch the final month of the legislative session. John Casey, a spokesman for Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, D-Paramount, said Hernández has submitted a physician’s note that could keep him out of work through this week and much of the next.
If Hernández’s absence stretches longer he could miss the late August conclusion of the legislative session, when his reliably liberal vote could be an asset to Democrats seeking to push bills across the finish line. A representative of Hernández’s office, Erica Martinez, said in an email, “Assemblymember Hernández is on medical leave, return will be determined by his doctor.”
Assembly Leadership stripped Hernández of his committee assignments at the start of July in response to a judge awarding a domestic violence restraining order to Hernández’s ex-wife. Hernández has consistently denied wrongdoing, attributing accusations that he inflicted violence to messy divorce proceedings.
Both Democratic and Republican lawmakers have called on Hernandez to step aside, though Rendon did not go that far in removing Hernández from his committee posts.
Termed out of the Assembly at the end of the year, Hernández has been campaigning to unseat Rep. Grace Napolitano, D-Norwalk, and claim a seat in Congress.