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While his colleagues were being sworn in, Congressman David Valadao stayed home in Hanford, waiting out a COVID-19 diagnosis.

“I received a rapid antigen COVID-19 test that showed a positive read. I am now waiting for the results from my PCR test, which takes longer and is more accurate. I will stay home in the meantime,” Valadao tweeted on Friday.

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David Taub

Politics 101

His office said on Monday that Valadao (R-Hanford) is “doing well and already hard at work by holding continued conversations with local elected officials and health care professionals to learn what challenges they are facing on the ground.”

Because Valadao missed his swearing-in, he could not vote on the selection of Speaker of the House. Regardless, he is still considered an official member of Congress, his staff says.

This is Valadao’s second time serving as congressman. He served three terms before being defeated by Democrat TJ Cox in 2018. Valadao won a rematch last November.

Valadao hired campaign manager Andrew Renteria as his chief of staff. Faith VanderVoorth — whose resume includes working for the Trump/Pence campaign and at the Department of Interior — is Valadao’s communications director.


Also in Politics 101: 

  • Brandau will lead Board of Supervisors.
  • Maxwell steps down from party role, hires staff.

Brandau In Line for Leading Supervisors

Steve Brandau is next in line to chair the Fresno County Board of Supervisors. He officially takes over at Tuesday’s meeting.

By county charter, the board chairmanship rotates to the supervisor who has gone the longest without serving as chair. Since the remaining four supervisors have all had a turn at the gavel, it is now Brandau’s turn.

The Fresno City Council will also chose its leaders on Thursday. Even though there is a rotational order in place, the council last month voted to give themselves leeway to change it.

Luis Chavez is scheduled to become president, with Garry Bredefeld as vice president — pending council voting.

Maxwell Steps Down from Local Party Post as He Takes Oath

Tyler Maxwell takes the oath of office tomorrow to become councilman for Fresno’s District 4.

In advance of his new position, he stepped down as president of the Fresno County Young Democrats.

Jewel Hurtado, a Kingsburg councilwoman and the group’s current vice president, will step in as interim president.

Maxwell has announced his office team —Laura Garcia, chief of staff; Carmen Iniguez, district director; Nabil Kherfan, deputy district director, Dayana Jiselle, communications director (to be shared with District 7 Councilman Nelson Esparza); and McKay Duran, intern.

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