City of Visalia Mayor Warren Gubler has announced his candidacy for California State Assembly in the 2018 election.
Gubler, a Republican, cites ineffective representation in Sacramento as the primary reason for seeking the Assembly District 26 seat.
Gubler stated that Assemblyman Devon Mathis has become a “mere tool of the special interests and lobbyists.”
“With overwhelming encouragement from my family and members of our District, I have now entered the arena and accept the challenge of unseating an entrenched politician who represents special interests and lobbyists. We cannot watch this incumbent win this election by default! With Mr. Mathis in our District 26 seat for another term, we could only expect more years of the same in Sacramento,” said Gubler.
According to Gubler, the most recent example of Mathis’ ineffective leadership came on September 14, 2017, regarding SB 649, a bill pushed by the telecommunications industry designed to take away local government control over public right-of-ways. All of the cities in Tulare County, as well as 300 cities across California, were opposed to the bill and Mathis on August 10, 2017, publicly stated that he’d be voting “no”. However, on September 14, Mathis voted yes on SB649.
Stunned that Mathis had again broken his word, Gubler made the decision to challenge Mathis in the 2018 election.
Adding fuel to the fire for local Republicans, Mathis voted in July to extend the state’s Cap-and-Trade program. The Legislative Analyst’s office estimates that gas prices could increase as much as 63 cents a gallon by 2021 in California.
“It has become painfully obvious that the support for Mr. Mathis has eroded as he has failed to keep his promises to the local electorate,” said Gubler.
Gubler also pointed out that the bulk of Mathis contributors are from out of the area or interests groups that have nothing to do with our district.
“I want my contributors to see that I have some skin in this game with my initial contribution.” Gubler has already contributed the first $50,000 to his campaign “in order to prime the pump.”
Gulber said he wanted to get a jump start “to keep up with the Sacramento special interest money flowing to the incumbent, in addition to local fund raising which our team is doing, I have my own check book and I’m not afraid to use it.”
Gubler was born in Exeter and grew up in Porterville where he graduated from Porterviille High School in 1975. He lettered in cross-country, basketball and track, played the trumpet for Buck Shaffer’s marching band and Fabulous Studio Band, and was senior class president. . He earned his Eagle Scout rank at age 14.
After high school, Gubler attended one year of junior college, then served as a Mormon missionary for two years in Okinawa and Japan, where he became fluent in Japanese.
Coming home Gubler put himself through college working various jobs, including as a paperboy for the Porterville Recorder
After junior college he transferred to Brigham Young University, where he obtained a degree in Government, and attended law school there. During law school he married his sweetheart Alisa and they have five children and two grandchildren.
Gubler started as an associate in 1983 with the Visalia law firm of Hurlbutt, Clevenger, Long & Vortmann, working his way up to senior partner. When that firm dissolved in 2001, Warren started the law firm now known as Gubler & Abbott LLP.
Gubler was elected to the Visalia City Council In November 2009 and has been mayor of Visalia since 2016. During his eight years on the Council, Gubler and the council have had a long list of accomplishments including:
- Planned and built the Visalia Water Conservation Plant upgrade, the largest public works project in Visalia history, $130 million upgrade, to be dedicated Fall 2017
- Planned and built the Visalia Emergency Communications Center
- Balanced the city budget each year since 2009
- Instituted work program for homeless (Environmental Cleanup Opportunities ECO) 2017
Gubler said he and his wife are grateful to be part of the Tulare County community, and look forward to giving back even more by serving in the California State Assembly.
“I perfectly understand that I am the underdog in this race and that the Sacramento special interests will fund my opponent,” said Gubler. “However, I also understand the deep frustration and dissatisfaction which our local citizens have felt with our lack of a voice in Sacramento, and as such, I now take up the challenge. We deserve better!”