Mayoral candidate Kevin Faulconer stacked up a key endorsement Thursday from the San Diego Regional Chamber of Commerce, led by Chamber President and C.E.O., former San Diego Mayor Jerry Sanders.
Announcing the decision, Sanders said: " "I'd like to introduce my good friend and the next mayor of San Diego, Kevin Faulconer."
"From the Convention Center expansion, comprehensive pension reform, and streamlining regulations for small business, Kevin's record on supporting jobs, business and economic growth is remarkable," Sanders added via a written statement. "Kevin also has institutional knowledge of City Hall and that will enable him to hit the ground running and move this city forward."
As reported in the Voice of San Diego, a Chamber endorsement vote was scheduled early Monday morning. However, Republican-turned-Independent-turned-Democrat and mayoral candidate Nathan Fletcher wanted a chance to present to the Chamber and seek the endorsement.
The vote was then canceled and moved to Thursday.
About not securing the endorsement, Fletcher sent the following statement through a spokeswoman:
"As a city we need to be better at working together. Obviously, I wasn't expecting the Chamber's endorsement, but I still took the opportunity to talk about my vision for moving San Diego forward and the need to end the 'us vs. them' mentality that has divided our city."
Previously, Faulconer secured the endorsement of the Republican Party of San Diego County, and the San Diego chapter of the California Restaurant Association. Fletcher has been supported by the lifeguard and firefighter's unions, and former San Diego County Democratic Party chair Jess Durfee endorsed him today. Councilman and mayoral candidate David Alvarez has the backing of the Labor Council.
"Jerry Sanders is a rock star in San Diego," said Faulconer campaign spokesman Tony Manolatos. "This is the biggest endorsement in this mayor’s race, hands down."
Friday, former City Attorney Mike Aguirre plans to make his official entrance into the fray and declare his candidacy for mayor. Former Assemblywoman Lori Saldaña has not yet made an official announcement, but pulled papers from the City Clerk to run last week.