Politics & Government

Two prominent Stanislaus County women enter bid to unseat Jeff Denham

Sue Zwahlen, left, and Virginia Madueno, are both running for the 10th Congressional District in the June 2018 election.
Sue Zwahlen, left, and Virginia Madueno, are both running for the 10th Congressional District in the June 2018 election.

Two prominent Stanislaus County women – Modesto school board member Sue Zwahlen and former Riverbank mayor Virginia Madueño – are seeking the seat of Rep. Jeff Denham, R-Turlock.

Zwhalen, an emergency room nurse, announced her bid Tuesday. Madueño, owner of a public relations firm, made her's official Monday.

They are among eight Democrats seeking to unseat Denham in the 10th Congressional District, which takes in Stanislaus and southern San Joaquin counties. It is among the most closely watched in the 2018 election, when Democrats expect to use health care and other issues to shave the GOP margin in the House.

"With a 40-year career as an emergency room nurse," Zwahlen said in a news release, "I have a solid understanding of our health care system and want to make sure everyone has access to quality health care when they need it."

Madueño said in her announcement that she would aid people who "are struggling to make ends meet, to provide an education for their children and to pay for basic living expenses. This campaign is not about me, it’s about them.”

The other declared challengers are independent Terra Snover and Democrats Mike Barkley,Lisa Battista, Mateo Morelos Bedolla, T.J. Cox, Josh Harder, Dotty Nygard and Seth Vaughn.

The top two finishers in the June 2018 primary, regardless of party, will face off in November. Denham has served since 2010, winning re-election even as the district gained a small Democratic edge in registered voters.

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