Lt. Gov. John Garamendi says he will drop his bid for governor and run for the U.S. House if an eastern San Francisco Bay area congressional seat opens as expected.
Garamendi has trailed in early polling in the race for the Democratic gubernatorial primary. He says he expects to run in the special election to replace Rep. Ellen Tauscher if she is confirmed as undersecretary of state for arms control and international security.
Tauscher, a Democrat, represents the 10th Congressional District, which includes parts of Solano, Contra Costa, Alameda and Sacramento counties.
Two other Democrats already announced for the seat, Sen. Mark DeSaulnier of Concord and Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan of Alamo.
Garamendi, 64, was announcing his bid Wednesday while visiting job training centers in Concord and Fairfield.
Garamendi made the announcement one day after San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom tweeted that is going to run for governor.
Newsom entering the race that could see him competing against men 15 and 30 years his senior, the 41-year-old Democrat pointedly used YouTube and the social networking sites Twitter and Facebook to disclose that he would seek his party's nomination to succeed Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger.
Newsom's tweet said: "It's official- running for Gov of CA. Wanted you to be the first to know. Need your help."
He included link to his political ad on You Tube.
The move mirrors Obama's early efforts as a candidate to identify and mobilize supporters through the Internet. But Newsom, who campaigned for Hillary Rodham Clinton in the presidential primary, described it as emblematic of the "intuitive" comfort with technology, transparency and consensus-building he says he shares with Obama.