Merced County Times Newspaper
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Adam Gray announces new run for U.S. Congress

It’s another rematch with Rep. John Duarte

Former State Assembly member Adam Gray of Merced on Wednesday announced his candidacy for the 13th Congressional District, setting up a rematch against John Duarte, the man who narrowly defeated Gray just last year.

The 2022 race was the second-closes202t in the nation, decided by fewer than 600 votes.

Having served in the State Assembly for over a decade, Gray represented more than half of the residents of the 13th Congressional District — including everyone in Merced and on the West Side of Stanislaus counties.

The district was redrawn before the 2022 election and immediately became one of the largest in California, stretching more than 160 miles from south of Coalinga in Fresno County to the outskirts of Stockton. It includes all of Merced County and parts of San Joaquin, Stanislaus, Madera and Fresno counties.

“Today, I’m proud to announce I’m running for Congress and getting back in the fight for valley families,” the 45-year-old Gray said. “For nearly 10 years, I had the privilege of representing the valley and putting the needs of our people above partisan politics in the State Assembly. I never shied away from bucking party leadership for the good of the Valley – fighting back against the state water grab that threatened tens of thousands of ag-based jobs, securing millions of dollars for flood control in communities like Planada and Grayson, and increasing access to rural health clinics while creating the pipeline for a new generation of doctors who will be educated at a medical school at UC Merced.”

During his time in the Assembly, Gray:

  • Secured funding for a study that showed the lack of doctors and medical care in the Valley. Getting more than $200 million in funding to establish a medical school at UC Merced.
  • Assured extension of the Altamont Corridor Express commuter rail line from Manteca to Modesto and, eventually, Merced.
  • Demanded an audit of the Department of Water Resources that revealed mismanagement of the state’s most precious natural resource.
  • Led a bipartisan coalition that went to the Assembly floor to defeat a bill by a Bay Area politician that would have jeopardized funding for vital new water-storage projects such as Sites Reservoir in 2022.
  • Organized the Stop The State Water Grab rally on the State Capitol steps in 2018.
  • Fought the wrongheaded California renewable energy rules that disqualified hydropower and cost Valley residents hundreds of dollars more on their energy bills each summer.
  • Found funding for myriad projects throughout the district, from the VOLT Academy in Modesto to a new water treatment facility, library and community center in Dos Palos, to the most innovative flood-control and groundwater enhancement project in the state at Dos Rios Ranch.
  • Secured funding to crack down on gang-related violence and murder in the Valley.
  • Pushed for reform to halt predatory lawsuits that destroyed small businesses.
  • Led renaming of the new Merced County Courthouse in honor of renowned civil rights lawyer and Merced native Charles Ogletree Jr.

“After eight months in Washington, self-serving politician John Duarte still has to commute from his Hughson home to the district he pretends to represent,” said Gray. “In Congress, he has consistently bent to the will of Kevin McCarthy while kowtowing to the whims of the radical Freedom Caucus. He has supported the gutting of funding for veterans and seniors, restricting a woman’s right to make her own healthcare decisions, and putting extremist politics over the interests of working people. Our families deserve an authentic voice in Congress, a voice from our part of the Valley. A voice they can trust.”

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