When Democratic incumbent Ken Cooley picked up 51 percent of the vote in the non-partisan primary election in June 2022 for the 7th District, it might have seemed like he had a good chance to go on to victory in the November general election.
The latter election, though, proved that anything can happen in politics, with Republican challenger Josh Hoover narrowly prevailing over Cooley, 50.4 percent to 49.6 percent. Hoover, who is in his early 30s as of this writing, beat the five-term Cooley by fewer than 1,400 votes.
“It’s time to set partisanship aside and work together to solve California’s greatest challenges,” Hoover said in a press release following his election.
“I look forward to working with my colleagues in the Legislature to restore accountability in our criminal justice system, make our communities safer, improve the academic outcomes of our students, and make life more affordable for the people we represent.”
Hoover announced in early 2023 that he’d become a member of the bipartisan California Problem Solvers Caucus.
The Sacramento Bee endorsed Hoover in June 2022, calling him “an experienced legislative aide and Folsom Cordova school board member.”
According to his LinkedIn profile, Hoover began at American River College in 2006 before going on to earn a bachelor’s degree in political science and public policy from University of California, Los Angeles in 2011 and a master’s in public administration from University of Southern California in 2015.
Hoover was elected to the Folsom Cordova Unified School District in 2018 and began to make a name for himself during the COVID-19 pandemic by advocating for schools to reopen. He also spoke out through his work as a spokesman for then-Assemblyman Kevin Kiley, telling the Californian, a Salinas newspaper, in August 2021, “Legislators were trying to draw a hard line and say schools need to be open in person and distance learning is no longer on the table.”
The biography portion on Hoover’s legislative website notes that he lives in Folsom with wife Nicole and their children: Addison, Ayden, and Austin. This page notes that one of Hoover’s children is on the autism spectrum, leading him to care “deeply about the integration and outcomes of kids with special needs.”
Environmental Safety and Toxic Materials (vice chair)
Jobs, Economic Development, and the Economy (vice chair)
AB 257: Hoover promised a package of legislation shortly after winning his election. He introduced one of his first bills on Jan. 19, 2023, seeking to prohibit homeless encampments within 500 feet of schools, parks, daycare centers, and libraries.
“No parent should be afraid to let their kids walk to school or worry about finding needles in the park where their children play, but that is the current experience for far too many families across our state,” Hoover said in a press release about his bill.
District Boundaries and Office Locations
Hoover’s district spans the cities of Folsom, Citrus Heights, and Rancho Cordova as well as a number of unincorporated communities, including Fair Oaks, Carmichael, and Orangevale. He keeps the following offices: