State Sen. Gil Cedillo (D-Los Angeles), who will be termed out of the Senate next year, stoked the fires further by declaring that he would challenge Perez -- speaker or not -- in the primary election next June. (If Perez had run for Cedillo's seat as expected, the two would probably have swapped places in a game of political musical chairs.)
Cedillo said he was confident of his political power back home, as his supporters released a poll suggesting he could beat Perez in the Assembly race by a large margin. "I've never lost," Cedillo said. "I don't plan to lose now."