When Joe Patterson made it through the June 2022 primary election for the California State Assembly 5th District seat, it wasn’t totally clear what his odds would be for November.
While Patterson, who lives in the Whitney Ranch area of Rocklin, received the most votes of any of the three Republicans on the primary ballot, they all trailed Democrat Rebecca Chenoweth. Primary voters broke heavily in November for Patterson, though, with him gaining 23 points in the general election compared to Chenoweth, who picked up a little over one point. Overall, Patterson won the general election by more than 20 points.
“As a father of four, I have always believed that families should have the opportunity to raise their children in a safe and prosperous place, while feeling they always have a voice in Sacramento,” Patterson said in a press release the day he was sworn in.
Prior to his election to the state legislature, Patterson served on the Rocklin City Council, where he gained a reputation among local reporters as friendly and approachable. He resigned his council seat in July 2022, following the primary election, to ensure the seat would be filled by “election rather than by an appointment,” according to the Sacramento Bee.
The Bee reported in October 2022 that Patterson had received $1,000 from the American Council Political Action Committee. The paper described the American Council as “a new and increasingly well-organized Christian advocacy group” working with a local megachurch “to bring that Biblical worldview into Northern California politics.”
Patterson earned a bachelor’s degree in government from California State University, Sacramento in 2005. He later served a post-graduate legislative fellowship, worked as a legislative staffer, and spent time in the private sector. He launched a small business in 2019 “where he worked with businesses and associations on regulatory and legal matters,” according to his legislative website.
Patterson, is in his early 40s when he was elected to office, is married to wife Colleen and they share four children: Ethan, Andi, Graham, and Blake.
AB 18: A teenager in Patterson’s district, 17-year-old Zachary Didier, fatally overdosed in December 2020 after accidentally taking a counterfeit fentanyl pill. An hour after being sworn into office, Patterson introduced legislation that pave the way for more fentanyl distributors to be charged with murder. The bill hasn’t been without controversy, with Patterson tweeting on Feb. 7 that he had been receiving many opposition letters. “I suspect, if someone is killed from a DUI, these groups wouldn’t have the same sympathy for the actions of the driver,” Patterson tweeted.
District Boundaries and Office Locations
Patterson’s district, which was created with the latest round of redistricting, includes Rocklin, Roseville, Lincoln, Granite Bay, El Dorado Hills, Placerville, and more. He keeps these offices: