Democratic field to replace McAdams as Salt Lake County Mayor could be a crowded one

Ben McAdams will resign as Salt Lake County Mayor in early January to take his seat in Congress. Before that happens, attention will turn to who might replace him once he leaves. is told that several Democrats are considering jumping into the contest to fill the remaining two years of McAdams’ term when he leaves.

The consensus frontrunner is current county councilwoman Jenny Wilson, who recently lost her U.S. Senate bid to Republican Mitt Romney. Wilson told she is actively considering running to replace McAdams and will announce her decision early this week.

Wilson would be a popular choice for the Democratic delegates who will choose McAdams’ successor. However, Wilson failed to carry Salt Lake County during the just-completed election, losing to Romney by more than 20,000 votes in the county.

We’ve also learned that Shireen Ghorbani, who lost to Chris Stewart in the 2nd Congressional District race this month, is also weighing a bid to replace McAdams. Even though she was unable to knock off Stewart, Ghorbani more than doubled Stewart’s vote total in the Salt Lake County part of the district.

Ghorbani did not respond to a request for comment.

District 1 Salt Lake County Councilmember Arlyn Bradshaw is also said to be considering a campaign to take over for McAdams. Bradshaw faced off against McAdams in 2009 when delegates selected McAdams to replace Sen. Scott McCoy in the Utah Legislature. Bradshaw won his bid for county council the next year, becoming the youngest county council member ever elected in Utah.

Bradshaw also did not respond to our request for a comment for this story.

Once McAdams resigns his seat, the Salt Lake County Democratic Party has 30 days to appoint his replacement, which will be determined by a vote of the nearly 1,100 members of the party’s central committee.

The winner of that vote will fill out the remaining two years of McAdams’ term.