Capitol Alert

Jerry Brown picks Mike Honda in congressional race

Gov. Jerry Brown has weighed in on the Democrat-on-Democrat South Bay congressional feud, choosing the liberal stalwart and incumbent Rep. Mike Honda over upstart Ro Khanna.

In issuing the rare endorsement, Brown said the former teacher and schools administrator running for an eighth term in Congress has dedicated his career to “tackling difficult issues and doing what's right for working people.”

“After leading the local effort to bring BART to San Jose, Mike got $900 million in federal funding for the project creating 10,000 jobs for the Silicon Valley. Mike is an effective advocate in Congress for his district and all of California – I'm proud to support him,” Brown said in a statement.

Democrats including President Barack Obama, California Attorney General Kamala Harris and the state party have been working to coalesce their own supporters behind the seven-term incumbent since Khanna secured the second spot in June. Khanna, a Brown appointee to the Workforce Development Board and former Obama administration official from Fremont, has won support from Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, San Jose Mayor Chuck Reed and former Controller Steve Westly.

Brown’s endorsement comes as Khanna’s campaign has sought to draw attention to what it describes as Honda’s lack of accomplishments over 14 years, including issuing a statement needling him for passing only one bill into law – a proposal to name a post office.

On Tuesday, Honda said he was proud to have the support of the Democratic governor.

“His popularity in my district and across the state reflects the impressive comeback California has made under his strong leadership,” Honda said. “As a member of the Appropriations Committee, I look forward to continuing our work to make important investments in our state and communities.”