By the San Diego Union-Tribune Editorial Board
May 27, 2022
For insurance commissioner, we endorse San Rafael Assemblymember Marc Levine over fellow Democrat Ricardo Lara, the incumbent. Lara is likely to be one of two candidates to make the Nov. 8 runoff election, but he shouldn’t be re-elected. He doesn’t deserve a new term. Scandal has dogged him from his days in the Legislature, and he’s only become more synonymous with it while serving in a role requiring ethical stewardship to ensure insurance companies treat all Californians fairly. That role gets trickier all the time with the climate emergency meaning more wildfires threatening homes.
Levine vows to be an “activist insurance commissioner who will stand up against the insurance companies on behalf of Californians to ensure that everyone has access to better, more comprehensive insurance options.” And he says he’ll require insurance companies to provide discounts and incentives for risk mitigation and home hardening programs. Meanwhile, as Levine notes, Lara took campaign contributions from the insurance industry even though he pledged not to. Lara counters that he returned those. But Lara has also repeatedly overruled his administrative law judges in favor of his donors. He’s got to go. We believe it’s time for new leadership — ethical leadership — in that office.