Plescia ousted, Villines tapped as Assembly’s new Minority Leader

Assembly Minority Leader George Plescia of San Diego, who was once described by Gov. Schwarzenegger’s top aide as a startled deer, was ousted Thursday as leader of the Assembly Republicans and replaced with Mike Villines, a conservative, Fresno-area lawmaker who has aggressively courted just-elected Assembly Republicans.

The decision followed a five-hour, closed-door meeting in the Capitol of the Republican caucus.

In the last election cycle, Republicans did not gain or lose any seats. They failed to knock off Democrat Nicole Parra, but held on to Bonnie Garcia’s seat, in a hard-fought victory over Democrat Steve Clute.

Democrats meeting in their own private session nearby reelected Fabian N

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