Capitol Alert

In San Diego, Rep. Xavier Becerra fuels speculation about Senate run

Rep. Xavier Becerra, D-Los Angeles, speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, March 25, 2015, to discuss the budget.
Rep. Xavier Becerra, D-Los Angeles, speaks during a news conference on Capitol Hill in Washington, Wednesday, March 25, 2015, to discuss the budget. AP

Mulling a run for the U.S. Senate, Democratic Rep. Xavier Becerra stopped off Monday in San Diego to talk with business and labor groups.

Becerra said the congressional recess presented an opportunity to travel well outside of his Los Angeles district to hold discussions with the Chamber of Commerce, local labor leaders and representatives from the biotechnology industry.

“There’s not a member from every part of the state that sits on the Ways and Means Committee who could tell people about what the latest is on trade policy or tax policy or healthcare,” said Becerra, the chairman of the House Democratic Caucus.

While he did no fundraising Monday, the prospect of a Senate run loomed over his stops in the state’s second-largest city.

“I am telling (people) that I am absolutely serious about this,” he said.

Two months after Sen. Barbara Boxer announced she wouldn’t seek reelection, Attorney General Kamala Harris remains the only Democrat in the race. Reps. Adam Schiff, D-Los Angeles and Loretta Sanchez, D-Santa Ana, also are considering giving up their seats to run.

Harris’ growing list of endorsements would have little impact on a decision, Becerra said. On Monday, Rep. Karen Bass, D-Los Angeles, joined the group lining up early behind Harris.

“Everybody has to do what they think they have to do,” Becerra said. “For those of us who are considering the race, for me at least, the consideration is do I believe I have an opportunity to do more for my state and my country by making a run at the U.S. Senate?

“That’s my biggest decision.”

Call Christopher Cadelago, Bee Capitol Bureau, (916) 326-5538. Follow him on Twitter @ccadelago.

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