Crunch time for District 4 contest

Candidates facing deadline to commit for June 3 election
By: Gus Thomson, Journal Staff Writer
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It's decision time this week for prospective candidates who have taken out papers in Placer County to run in the June 3 primary. The high-profile 4th District congressional seat is one of them and the political landscape for the post from both the Republican and Democrat sides are expected to become clearer this week. Deadline is Friday for filing, but the time will be extended through March 12 because U.S. Rep. John Doolittle, the incumbent, is not filing for re-election. Charlie Brown, a retired Air Force officer from Roseville, is due to register as a candidate Friday. The Democrat standard-bearer in 2006, he narrowly lost to Doolittle and announced in the summer he would run again. At Placer County's elections division, a second prospective candidate for the Democratic Party 4th District nomination has taken out papers “ John Wolf Wolfgram of Foresthill. Doolittle's retirement announcement in January created a flurry of new interest in the post. Roseville military security consultant Eric Egland and Auburn City Councilman Mike Holmes had announced their candidacies in the summer. After the Doolittle retirement announcement, former state Sen. Rico Oller of San Andreas and former 3rd District Rep. Doug Ose of Sacramento each said they would run for the Republican nomination. Ose has registered to run with the elections division while Oller has not. Holmes has since stepped away from running and now supports Ose, while Egland hasn't registered as a candidate and is now supporting the drive among some conservative Republicans to convince state Sen. Tom McClintock, R-Thousand Oaks, to run. McClintock's future in the 4th District will be clarified this morning with an announcement of his intentions on the steps of the Placer County Courthouse in Auburn “ the same site Ose made his announcement just more than a month ago. McClintock has taken out candidate's papers but not returned them, according to the elections division. Ryan Ronco, assistant registrar of voters, said that the June primary could have multiple candidates on the Republican and Democratic sides in the 4th District and once filing closes, the Secretary of State's office will list all candidates going on the ballot. There could be other candidates filing at other counties, Ronco said. Also on the ballot will be elections for three Placer County supervisors. In the Auburn area, 3rd District Supervisor Jim Holmes is in the running for a second term. Auburn's James Fensel has taken out papers to challenge him but not returned them. Bruce Kranz, the 5th District supervisor since 2005, has a challenger in Meadow Vista's Bob Houston, a businessman who returned his candidate's papers last week. A second potential challenger “ Jennifer Montgomery of Soda Springs “ has taken out candidate's papers and is scheduled to make an announcement Thursday in Auburn. Granite Bay's Kirk Uhler, appointed to the 4th District supervisorial seat after Ted Gaines' election to the state Assembly, was the only candidate in that district's race as of Monday afternoon. The Journal's Gus Thomson can be reached at, or post a comment at