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The San Diego and Imperial Counties Labor Council came out yesterday with an official endorsement for Democratic California Assemblyman Ben Hueso to succeed state Senator Juan Vargas in a special election this May. Vargas won the contest this fall to replace outgoing House of Representatives member Bob Filner, recently seated as mayor of San Diego.

The move comes as little surprise, given Council Secretary-Treasurer/CEO Lorena Gonzalez’s declared candidacy in the potential race to replace Hueso if he’s successful in climbing the next rung on the political ladder.

The Council also endorsed Myrtle Cole in a special election race to replace San Diego City Council president Tony Young, who left office to take a position with the American Red Cross.

Although council positions are officially non-partisan by state law, local pundits expect the candidate backed by Democrats, potentially driven by labor, to win the district handily.

Cole, a former police officer, already has council connections, having been employed by the body to help implement a “Community Oriented Policing” program. She also worked directly for Young, as well as former District 4 council members George Stevens and Charles Lewis.

She currently works with United Domestic Workers, a union representing workers who provide in-home care for the elderly and disabled.

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