One could assume Bill Monning—the California senator whose district stretches from Santa Cruz to San Luis Obispo—to be the heir apparent for Sam Farr’s seat in Congress. Others may think of Luis Alejo, one of California’s most successful lawmakers, representing Watsonville and parts of Monterey County. Neither has officially announced his candidacy.

The real front-runner, now that Farr has announced he won’t seek re-election in the 20th District, might be farther south. The first person to announce his campaign was Monterey County Deputy District Attorney Jimmy Panetta—son of Leon Panetta, who preceded Farr in the same spot before going on to fry bigger fish, like becoming defense secretary and killing Osama Bin Laden.

He already has the endorsement of former lawmaker and retired Santa Cruz County Treasurer Fred Keeley.

Thanks to all the campaigning Leon has done on Farr’s behalf, many expect Jimmy to get Farr’s nomination as well. 

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