The California state Senate has elected Kevin de Leon, a Latino, as leader. On Monday, the Senate named as its next leader a Los Angeles Democrat who is best known for championing policies benefiting low-wage workers and their children.
By voice vote, the 40-member chamber elected Sen. Kevin de Leon to succeed Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg of Sacramento, who will step down Oct. 15, about seven weeks after this year's legislative session has ended. De Leon, 47, will become just the second Latino leader of the Senate, and the first in more than 130 years.
Steinberg described de Leon as a lawmaker who is not afraid to lead. He cited his role last year in pushing a bill that gave immigrants in the country illegally a way to obtain driver's licenses, an attempt that succeeded after several years of failure. "Kevin is smart. He is seasoned. He is hungry to get big things done," Steinberg told his colleagues before the vote.
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