Longtime lifeguard, union chief, and onetime city-council member, Democrat Ed Harris has declared he will run for mayor against incumbent Kevin Faulconer, according to a statement of intent filed with the city clerk’s office on March 1.
Harris’s entry into the race against Republican Faulconer, which had recently been rumored in Democratic circles, could make the contest livelier than expected in light of the Chargers’ well-funded efforts with ex-Padres owner John Moores to thwart the mayor's will by promoting a football stadium downtown rather than Mission Valley.
Whether Harris can attract the money from Moores or others necessary to mount a full-fledged campaign remains to be seen, though some expect labor unions — which spent heavily on the failed campaign of Democrat David Alvarez against Faulconer — to ante up.
Harris joins ex-Democratic assemblywoman Lori Saldaña, now an independent, in taking on Faulconer, whose million-dollar-plus bankroll has made him unassailable, at least per conventional political thinking prior to the emergence of the Moores and Chargers' owner Dean Spanos duo as a possible anti-Faulconer force.
Harris took his city-council seat in April 2014 after being appointed to fill the last eight months of the newly elected Faulconer's city-council term.
In April of last year, Harris dropped out of the race for the 78th state Assembly seat being vacated by termed-out Democrat Toni Atkins after city councilman Todd Gloria joined the field.