Assemblymember Vince Fong, 44, Republican

Assemblymember Vince Fong (R-Bakersfield).

Assemblymember Vince Fong (R-Bakersfield).

(Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press)

First elected to the Assembly in 2016, Fong serves as the vice chair of the budget and transportation committees.

The Republican began his career in politics as a staff member for longtime Bakersfield Rep. Bill Thomas, who served as a chair to the powerful House Ways and Means Committee, where Fong worked on international trade policy. Fong then served as district director for McCarthy, advising the congressman on issues affecting the Central Valley and helping serve constituents.

Fong has been a vocal critic of Gov. Gavin Newsom’s push for restricting oil production in California and the administration’s overall energy policies, and has warned that the state’s electricity grid is not capable of supporting the administration’s mandated transition to electric vehicles. Fong also has criticized the spending of state money by Newsom and the California Legislature’s Democratic leadership.

Sen. Shannon Grove, 58, Republican

State Sen. Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield).

State Sen. Shannon Grove (R-Bakersfield).

(Associated Press)

Grove, who once described herself as a “gun-carrying, tongue-talking, spirit-filled believer,” served as leader of the California Senate Republicans for two years.

The Bakersfield Republican is a U.S. Army veteran and served six years in the Assembly before her election to the state Senate in 2018. An enthusiastic supporter of Trump before and after he lost the 2020 presidential election, Grove called him “the greatest of all time” and reiterated false claims that President Biden won the election because of voter fraud.

Grove is a staunch defender of the California oil industry, a critical economic force in her Bakersfield-area Senate district. She has opposed mandatory vaccinations for schoolchildren, including the COVID-19 vaccine, and this year successfully pushed through legislation to increase penalties for child sex traffickers.

Fresno County Supervisor Nathan Magsig, 47, Republican

Fresno County Supervisor Nathan Magsig.

Fresno County Supervisor Nathan Magsig.

(Craig Kohlruss / Fresno Bee/TNS)

Republican Nathan Magsig is a member of the Fresno County Board of Supervisors who unsuccessfully ran for Congress last year for the seat occupied by Rep. Tom McClintock (R-Elk Grove).

He has acted as a conservative firebrand in the Fresno area, voting earlier this year to sue the state of California over a law that requires cities to eliminate the Native American slur “squaw” from geographic features and place names. He has also echoed Trumpisms about unfounded election fraud claims.

The former youth pastor who also served as mayor of conservative Clovis was a staunch McCarthy supporter, telling The Times earlier this month: “My focus now is to show my support for him.”

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