State treasurer candidate Vivek Viswanathan plans to run 20 miles Tuesday from Capistrano Beach Park in Dana Point to Aliso Canyon as part of a series of runs from Sacramento to the U.S.-Mexico border in San Diego totaling 625 miles.
Viswanathan ran 22 miles from Newport Beach to Capistrano Beach Park Monday in about six hours, including the time he stopped for lunch, campaign creative director Annie Khoa told City News Service. The run increased Viswanathan’s mileage to 549, Khoa said.
Viswanathan began the runs March 10 on the steps of the treasurer’s office in Sacramento. He said he was conducting the runs because of a belief that by “going through communities on foot and experiencing how people are living, what’s on their minds, we can make a big difference.”
Viswanathan’s runs took him through the state’s Central Valley and Los Angeles and Riverside counties.
Viswanathan is set to conclude his series of runs this week at Friendship Park at the border.
The runs are reminiscent of the 1,003-mile, 91-day walk across Florida taken by Lawton Chiles in 1970 that catapulted him from a state senator largely unknown outside his district to a victory in a race for the United States Senate.
Dan Walker conducted a 1,197-mile walk across Illinois during his successful 1972 gubernatorial campaign.
The tactic was employed less successfully by then-Rep. Jerome Waldie, who finished fifth in the 1974 California Democratic gubernatorial primary won by Jerry Brown.
Viswanathan, 31, was a policy adviser for Hillary Clinton’s 2016 presidential campaign and a special adviser in the office of Gov. Jerry Brown from 2017 through January.
Viswanathan received a bachelor’s degree in history from Harvard in 2009, a master’s degree in philosophy from Cambridge University in 2010 and an MBA and law degree from Stanford in 2014.
Viswanathan is among five candidates in next Tuesday’s election seeking to succeed John Chiang, who is running for governor. The others are fellow Democrat Fiona Ma, a member of the State Board of Equalization, Republicans Greg Conlon, a businessman who lost to Chiang in 2014, and Cudahy City Councilman Jack Guerrero, and retired steam engineer Kevin Akin of the Peace and Freedom Party.