Vying for the newly drawn 8th Senate District are incumbent State Senator Tom Berryhill (R-Twain Harte), and Paulina Miranda (D-Fresno).
Due to redistricting based on the 2010 Census results and the 2011 Citizens Redistricting Committee, California’s 8th Senate District, which previously encompassed bay area towns, now covers a stretch of the Central Valley including all of Tuolumne County, parts of Stanislaus, Amador, Calaveras, Fresno, Inyo, Mariposa, Mono, Sacramento and Tulare counties. Parts of Stanislaus County include Turlock, Hughson, Oakdale and Waterford.
Berryhill currently serves the 14th Senate District which, among other areas, covers just a portion of Stanislaus County including parts of Bystrom, Del Rio, Denair, East Oakdale, Hickman, Hughson, parts of Modesto, Oakdale, Riverbank, Salida, Waterford, 48 percent of the unincorporated area.
The District, new to Turlock, has had little to no visible campaigning been done by either candidate in the area, other than a couple signs.
Berryhill was elected in 2010 to the State Senate and serves on the Committees on Agriculture, Banking and Finance, Business Professions and Economic Development Governmental Organization, Human Services and Budget. He is a member of Budget Subcommittee 4, which oversees State administration and general government.
Berryhill previously served as an Assemblymember on the committees for Utilities and Commerce and Water, Parks and Wildlife; he was Vice Chair of the Agriculture and Human Services committees.
He has worked toward repealing the fire tax, protecting Williamson act and rural public safety funding, and fiscal reform. In the Assembly, he was a member of the water bond working group, and in the Senate he continues his work towards solving the water issues facing California.
Miranda, heavily invested in Democratic politics, is a controller of the California Democratic Council, a member of the Fresno County Democratic Central Committee, an Officer of the Democratic Party in Fresno County, a State Board Representative in the California Democratic Party, and has helped build five Democratic clubs in the Fresno County. Additionally, Miranda was co-chair of John Kerry’s presidential campaign in Fresno.
She ran unsuccessfully in a 2013 Special Election for State Senate District 16 among three other Democrats and member of the Peace and Freedom party; ultimately now Senator Andy Vidak (R-Hanford) won the seat narrowly against another Democratic opponent.
Miranda, originally from Mexico, has ties to Los Angeles and San Diego, she studied in the School of Chemistry, at the National Autonomous University of Mexico in Mexico City, Mexico, and earned a bachelor’s degree to become Chemist-Pharmacist-Biologist; there she is a candidate for a Master in Industrial administration. In 2012, Miranda graduated from the Premium Emerge California Program in San Francisco.
Miranda states her profession as an educator in the areas of math, physics, immunology, and analytical development. She has worked as an organizer for immigration reform rallies in Fresno, and has worked with local schools to integrate parents into the high school system and has developed programs for non-English speakers.
The race for the newly drawn District that encompasses a variety of areas within the Central Valley will be decided during the Nov. 4 election where the winner will serve a four-year term.