State Senate candidate Sukhee Kang, a Democrat from Fullerton running in SD-29, today announced his campaign has surpassed the $200,000 mark — 40 times more than the previous Democratic candidate in this race — as the only announced Democrat in the race.
Kang’s Republican challenger is State Rep. Ling Ling Chang,a freshman state assembly representative in North Orange County.
Greg Diamond, who opposed Bob Huff in 2012, raised less than $5,000 in his race while garnering about 45% of the vote while not aggressively campaigning. Kang is already walking neighborhoods in the district and has garnered a number of significant local and state endorsements.
Here’s the announcement:
KANG RAISES MORE THAN $200K IN SIX WEEKS
Democratic Senate Candidate Demonstrates his FundraisingProwess
FULLERTON – Democratic state Senate candidate Sukhee Kang announced today that his campaign has raised more than $200,000 in just the first six weeks. Kang announced his candidacy on April 22, and the first scheduled campaign fundraising event was held on May 16. Kang is running in the 29th Senate District, now held by Senate Minority Leader Bob Huff, who is term-limited next year.
“I am delighted and gratified that the response to my campaign for the Senate has been so tremendous in such a short period of time, “Kang said. “The positive reaction I am receiving from people all over the district just reinforces my belief that we can win this seat in 2016, especially because it is a presidential year. And I will leave no stone unturned to make sure we have the resources to be competitive and successful.”
“We put everyone on notice from the very beginning that Sukhee Kang’s campaign would be a full-bore effort, unlike any a Democrat has ever put forward in this seat or its earlier iterations,” added Garry South, principal of The Garry South Group and the chief strategist for the campaign. “The Republicans have already changed out candidates in this seat because of Sukhee’s entry into the race, and they should know that we intend to win.”
Kang previously ran successfully for Irvine City Council twice, and for mayor twice. In 2012, he was the Democratic candidate in Congressional District 45 against incumbent Republican Rep. John Campbell. In those five races – raising money under contribution limits far less than in the state Senate race – Kang raised more than $1.3 million dollars.
In the Senate race, Kang has won overwhelming support from fellow Democrats, including Sen. Kevin de León, the current president pro tempore and Democratic leader of the Senate, Sen. Bill Monning, Senate majority leader, and Sen. Connie Leyva, chair of the Senate Democratic Caucus. In addition, four past presidents pro tem of the Senate have come out in support of Kang’s candidacy, as has the Asian and Pacific American Legislative Caucus and dozens of other state legislators and local officials throughout Orange and Los Angeles counties.
Kang was a two-term city councilmember in Irvine, as well as a two-term mayor of the city, reelected overwhelmingly in 2010 with more than 64 percent of the vote. He and his wife Joanne, also a South Korean native who immigrated to the U.S. with him in 1977, have been residents of Orange County for 38 years and now live in Fullerton.
Kang has been recognized numerous times for his outstanding public service and community leadership, including receiving the American Diabetes Association’s “Orange County Father of the Year Award” in 2012, the Carnegie Corporation’s “Pride of America” award in 2010, and the International Leadership Foundation’s “Public Servant of the Year” award in 2010. The Irvine Chamber of Commerce also recognized Kang in 2010 as “Business Leader of the Year.”
A veteran, Kang served in the South Korean Army, then graduated from the prestigious Korea University with a degree in agricultural economics, and in 2011 was awarded an honorary doctorate from Dongseo University in Busan, Korea. He also has served a special advisor to the chancellor of UC Irvine, and as an adjunct professor and Chancellor Fellow at Chapman University.
The Kang children, Alan, 34, and Angie, 32, attended public schools in Anaheim, where the Kang family lived for 10 years. Alan, a graduate of USC’s Marshall School of Business, is a manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers, Angie, a graduate of Berkeley Law School (Boalt Hall), is senior counsel at Hulu.