Voter's Edge California Voter Guide
Get the facts before you vote.
Brought to you by
League of Women Voters of California Education Fund
California State Library@CAStateLibrary
Tuesday June 5, 2018 — California Primary Election
Invest in unbiased information

With your support, we can reach and inform more voters.

Donate now to spread the word.

State of CaliforniaCandidate for Lieutenant Governor

Photo of Ed Hernandez

Ed Hernandez

State Senator/Businessman
1,346,848 votes (20.6%)Winning
Use tab to activate the candidate button. Use "return" to select this candidate. You can access your list by navigating to 'My Choices'.
For more in-depth information on this candidate, follow the links for each tab in this section. For most screenreaders, you can hit Return or Enter to enter a tab and read the content within.
Candidate has provided information.
Thank candidate for sharing their information on Voter's Edge.

My Top 3 Priorities

  • Education: I’m deeply committed to debt-free college for all students. I am an advocate for reinvesting in our K-12 public schools, community colleges, public universities, and our vocational/ career tech programs.
  • Healthcare: As an Optometrist, I've seen the devastation a lack of access to healthcare has on our communities. I've been a champion for expanding access to quality, affordable healthcare, and I will continue fighting for universal healthcare.
  • Immigration: I will work to ensure that California embraces policies that protect local and state agencies, including law enforcement, from becoming de facto immigration agents for the federal government. I fully support the reinstatement of DACA.



Profession:State Senator/Businessman
State Senator, California State Senate (2010–current)
Optometrist, Self (1987–current)
State Senator, California State Senate — Elected position (2010–current)
California State Assembly Member, California State Assembly (2006–2010)
State Assembly Member, California State Assembly — Elected position (2006–2010)
President, California State Board of Optometry — Appointed position (2003–2006)


Indiana University Doctor of Optometry Degree, Optometry (1986)
California State University Fullerton Bachelor of Science, Biology (1982)
Rio Hondo College General Education, General Education (1979)
Mt. San Antonio College General Education, General Education (1977)
Bassett High School High School Diploma, General (1975)

Questions & Answers

Questions from League of Women Voters of California Education Fund (5)

The Lieutenant Governor sits on the UC Board of Regents and the CSU Board of Trustees.  What are your ideas for the future of higher education in California public universities and colleges?
Answer from Ed Hernandez:

California’s standards of educational excellence have long set us apart and above. However, in recent years rising tuition and increased student debt have led many prospective students and young people to become disillusioned with the appeal of a higher education. In order to secure our developmental future and continued tradition of success and excellence, California must make our educational system more accountable and accessible to students. We have to ensure our educational standards of excellence don't slip. Recently, I authored SCA 14, a proposed Constitutional Amendment that would limit the budgetary autonomy of the Board of Regents and enact changes to the Board to make it more accountable to the students. But beyond the changes made to the Board of Regents, the State of California also needs to provide more funding to our UC and CSU systems so that we can return to the dream of truly affordable higher education set forth in the California Master Plan for Higher Education. In addition, I proudly supported Assemblymember Santiago's California College Promise, which passed last fall and made the first year of community college free to all qualified Californians. This is a major victory for California's students, but we must continue to protect those that are still facing crippling student debt.



California has some of the richest people in the country and some of the poorest. What would you do to reduce income inequality in California? 
Answer from Ed Hernandez:

During my time in the State Legislature, I have worked to address income inequality and improve opportunities for economic mobility by making a quality education more accessible to all young people. In addition, I have championed investments in workforce development and job-training as well as vocational and career technical programs that help level the field. Another step to combat income inequality and rebuild our middle class is closing antiquated tax loopholes that benefit corporations and the wealthy. As Lieutenant Governor, I will advocate for a fairer, more progressive tax code to help mend the wealth-gap.  



Currently there isn't enough money in the state retirement system to pay for all the benefits promised to government workers. What would you do as Governor to address the state’s unfunded pension liability?
Answer from Ed Hernandez:

We  owe it  to our public  employees and to  the people’s faith  in government to keep  the promises we make and  guarantee defined benefit retirement  plans. Defined contribution plans would  be a betrayal of the promise we’ve made  to California’s workers that they retire with  a livable pension and I will fight passionately  against such a change.

In  addition,  I proudly supported  SB 1234 which launched  the California Secure Choice  Retirement Savings Program, now  known as CalSavers, the most significant  expansion of retirement security since we passed  Social Security. CalSavers is a voluntary savings plan  for private sector California workers that will incur no  cost or liability to taxpayers or employers. As Lieutenant  Governor, I will work to protect defined benefit pension plans  for public employees and continue working with my colleagues in the  State Legislature to identify creative strategies to help guarantee a dignified  retirement for all working Californians.

There is a shortage of affordable housing in California. How would you approach addressing California’s housing crisis? Please include specific proposals.
Answer from Ed Hernandez:

California is facing an extreme affordable housing crisis and I support efforts to fund statewide affordable housing initiatives and will advocate for affordable housing ordinances to create desperately needed low-income housing for seniors, families, the mentally ill, and the disabled. Additionally, I support earmarked funds for LGBT affirmative housing. We should continue to pass legislation to combat gender identity discrimination in housing, education, and employment. As Lieutenant Governor, I’ll urge cities throughout the state to enhance their use of inclusionary zoning by mandating that developers make a percentage of their units below market rate value. In the State Legislature, I have consistently voted for affordable housing initiatives and I supported Senate Bill 2, the Building Homes and Jobs Act, which will build safe and affordable apartments and single-family homes while creating 29,000 jobs for every $500 million invested in affordable housing. Also, I was proud to support Senate Bill 35, which streamlined the zoning process for affordable housing, reducing the red tape that interferes with that process. Ultimately, I believe we need to lower the cost of housing and increase the number of units so people are not completely priced out of the area they work in, or worse still, left homeless.

According to a ""Civility In America” survey, 75% of Americans believe that the U.S. has a major civility problem.  If you are elected what will do to address this?
Answer from Ed Hernandez:

Our nation is experiencing unprecedented division and political unrest. But with the enormous societal and economic hardships we are grappling with today, we need to be able to talk to one another and come up with solutions to the challenges we all collectively face.

As a statewide leader, I will work to lead by example and create a culture of inclusivity and respect. I  believe I have a unique ability to appeal to both the progressive wing of the Democratic Party  and moderate voters due to my record of creating positive change for Californians and listening to all  sides of an issue. If elected as Lieutenant Governor, I will use the bully pulpit of this office to advocate for people over party. I will work with all stakeholders in the community to launch public education campaigns and hold community events that promote togetherness and creative problem solving, regardless of political views.

In addition, I will protect every Californian’s freedom of speech, hold those guilty of hate crimes responsible, and invest in education. A good education gives young people critical thinking skills that allow them to make responsible decisions and open their minds to new cultures and ideas.

Who gave money to this candidate?


Total money raised: $2,587,674

Top contributors that gave money to support the candidate, by organization:

Employees of Ridge Eye Care
AFSCME California
California State Council of Laborers
Laborers Pacific Southwest Regional Organizing Coalition
Southern California District Council of Laborers
Southern California Pipe Trades District Council 16
State Building & Construction Trades Council of California
UA Local 467 Plumbers, Steamfitters, and Refrigeration Fitters
UA Local Union 250
United Domestic Workers of America

More information about contributions

By State:

California 91.61%
District of Columbia 1.93%
Texas 1.30%
New York 0.71%
Other 4.46%

By Size:

Large contributions (99.63%)
Small contributions (0.37%)

By Type:

From organizations (79.31%)
From individuals (20.69%)
Source: MapLight analysis of data from the California Secretary of State.

Videos (5)

— May 25, 2018 Ed Hernandez for Lieutenant Governor
— May 25, 2018 Ed Hernandez for Lieutenant Governor
— May 25, 2018 Ed Hernandez for Lieutenant Governor
— May 25, 2018 Ed Hernandez for Lieutenant Governor
— May 25, 2018 Ed Hernandez for Lieutenant Governor

Please share this site to help others research their voting choices.