Is Anthony Rendon out? This assemblyman says he has the votes to remove him

·2 min read
Alie Skowronski/Sacramento Bee file

California’s State Assembly could soon see a change in leadership.

Assemblyman Robert Rivas, D-Salinas, on Friday announced that he has the votes to dislodge Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, D-Lakewood, from the top Assembly spot.

The 70th Assembly speaker, Rendon has served in that post since 2016.

According to a statement from Rivas’ office, the the assemblyman has built a coalition of support that includes the leadership of the Latino, API, LGBTQ, Womens’, Jewish and Progressive Caucuses, “as well as significant support from members of the Black Caucus.”

Rivas said he met with Rendon on Friday morning to discuss the transition of power; no timeline has been given, and there is yet to be a formal vote to name Rivas speaker.

Still, Rivas was confident enough in his position to put out a statement Friday.

“I am honored to have earned the support and confidence of my colleagues across the state, from the Mexico border to the Oregon border,” Rivas said. “I look forward to the progress we will make together to alleviate our affordability crisis, protect our environment, and ensure that California remains a land of opportunity for every resident.”

If Rivas is named the next Assembly speaker, it will be the first time in modern memory that the speaker has come from a majority-rural district. Rivas currently serves as chair of the Assembly Agriculture Committee, as well as vice-chair of the Latino Legislative Caucus.

While it’s unclear how amicable this replacement is, Rivas offered warm words for Rendon’s time in office.

“Anthony Rendon has been an effective and unifying Speaker, and I am grateful to him for his steady leadership, and I am confident a smooth transition of power is a shared value of ours,” Rivas said. “I hope to follow his example in bringing people together to pass historic legislation that moves our state forward and addresses our current health and economic crises.”

Rendon’s office did not respond to a Bee request for comment by deadline.