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District 1 has a new senator

Beth Gaines says she’s not ready to announce possible Assembly candidacy
By: Bridget Jones, Journal Staff Writer
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Senate District 1 officially has a new representative. Judge Don Currier gave the oath of office to Sen. Ted Gaines, R-Roseville, at 9 a.m. Thursday in the Senate Chambers of the State Capitol in Sacramento. Gaines is replacing Sen. Dave Cox, R-Fair Oaks, who died during the summer. Gaines beat out Mayor Ken Cooley, D-Rancho Cordova, with 63.2 percent of the vote Tuesday, according to the California Secretary of State’s Office. Family, friends and staff filled Gaines’ new Senate office before the ceremony, wishing him well. Just after he was sworn in, Gaines thanked God and the country, as well as a particular group of supporters. “I just wanted to take a moment to thank my family and friends for the support they have provided me during the many years in politics,” Gaines said. Sen. Darrell Steinberg, Senate president pro tempore, immediately congratulated Gaines and said he was sure the new senator would do a great job. After the ceremony, Gaines told the Journal some of his plans for his new position. “I’m very excited about the opportunity to serve in the Senate,” he said. “We have got huge problems here in the state of California, and I’m hoping we can work on a bi-partisan basis to solve those problems. We have got to figure out how to get people back to work in the private sector, and I think we ought to be implementing incentives for job creation. I’m looking at putting together a legislative package that would put together incentives for job creation.” So, what will be different for Gaines in terms of his new position? “It’s a very large district, so I’m going to have to make sure I’m in touch with my constituents throughout the 12 counties,” Gaines said. “We will be traveling throughout the district on a regular basis and meeting with constituents … and we will have staffing to help handle any constituent problems they may be having with the state government.” Beth Gaines is considering running for her husband’s former Assembly seat, but said she didn’t want to officially announce her candidacy Thursday. “I’m just not prepared to talk about that at all,” Beth Gaines said Thursday. “I have just been getting a lot of calls from the district, (from) concerned citizens telling me to run.” Ted Gaines said his wife has a gained lot of knowledge through helping him campaign that would assist her if she were to run. “She knows the district really well … and she has a real heart for people,” he said. Beth Gaines said she enjoyed the whirlwind Senate campaign. “It was exhausting, but it was a lot of fun,” she said. “The most amazing part of it is meeting the most incredible people. It’s just been amazing, the outreach, people writing to us and sharing their family pictures.” Nancy Nelson, a volunteer campaign worker, said she helped address 25,000 postcards and worked the phone bank for days during the campaign. “(Ted) had a great staff,” Nelson said. “A lot of good family and friends came and helped. We all bonded.” Reach Bridget Jones at bridgetj@goldcountrymedia.com