Candidates for the June 2021 special election for AD18


There are eight (8!!) candidates running for AD18 Assemblymember. This is a powerful, state-level position that typically only comes up for grabs every 12 years – so anyone with any political ambition or interest will run when the opportunity arises!

Janani Ramachandran (Oakland)

Malia Vella (Alameda)

Mia Bonta (Alameda)

  • Name recognition: married to recently-resigned AD18 Assemblymember and newly-installed CA Attorney General Rob Bonta. What will this mean for legislators she doesn’t like? we only know enough to ask, not enough to speculate!
  • Alameda Unified School District Board president
  • CEO of the controversial Oakland Promise
  • Has a campaign page with no bio, no platform, no endorsements - but many ways to donate Now has a campaign website! possibly updated now that she’s graduated from Emerge California? (She last-minute backed out of a June 5 candidate forum because it overlapped with her program graduation)
  • Heavily endorsed at state and national and local levels - most notably, Barbara Lee rarely endorses (and even scolded candidates last election for implying an endorsement).
  • Endorsed by Oakland City Councilmembers for Districts 1, 4, 5, 6, and 7

Victor Aguilar (San Leandro)

Eugene Canson

James Aguilar (San Leandro)

Stephen Slauson

  • Token Republican on the ballot
  • Ran in previous 2018 and 2020 AD18 elections

Joel Britton

Candidate forums

There have been a number of candidate forums, and more are coming up still!

You may be particularly interested in the (June 5 East Bay For Everyone candidate forum) which asked candidates (39:24) “Do you support the move to de-police traffic enforcement, and what legislative actions would ensure safe streets without armed police?". (Note: two candidates did not answer this question: Mia Bonta backed out of this forum entirely, and Janani Ramachandran had to leave the forum early.)

Oakland East Bay Democratic Club - AD18 Candidate Forum - May 20 (result: endorsement for Janani Ramachandran)

Upcoming candidate forums

Saturday June 12 1pm

June 15 7pm