FREMONT, Calif. (KTVU) - For the first time in the city of Fremont's 62-year history, a married couple will serve together on the city council.
On Tuesday night, the city of Fremont made history swearing in Jenny Kassan as one of its newest council members. She’s joining her husband Vinnie Bacon on the dais.
“I know for a lot of people it was very weird,” said Kassan. “For me, I never felt weird about it because Vinnie and I are both independent people.”
“Anytime you have someone you like,” said Bacon. “You like their principles. They get onto the council, you're happy.”
Bacon couldn't be more proud. His wife of 10 years, Kassan never thought she'd be a politician. She didn't have to look far for inspiration.
“Ever since I knew Vinnie, he was really involved in local politics,” said Kassan. “I saw him run for city council three times before he was elected and I helped him every single time.”
Bacon was elected in 2016 during an at-large election. This year, the city changed to district elections. Kassan decided to run, unhappy with big box development and lack of affordable housing in Fremont. The two admit they share the same opinions on how the city could be better but are individuals. For her part, Kassan's background is in law with a masters in city planning.
“We actually had a friend of ours who would always say Jenny actually is more qualified than Vinnie,” said Bacon. “Bruise my ego a little bit but I think it's true. She has very good qualifications.”
There are no rules that prohibit a married couple from serving together. They plan to abide by the Brown Act, the state's open meeting law.
“I have actually told the other council members if they talk to me or talk to Jenny they should assume they have talked to the both of us,” said Bacon.
They said a contentious meeting won't end their marriage.
“I don't really worry about that” said Kassan. “We've been married for 10 years. We have had lots of arguments over the years. We’ve learned how to deal with it when we disagree.”
They both laugh at the idea of being a power couple.
“I don't think we are going to come in and take over, running Fremont in any way,” said Kassan. “We are just going to be public servants doing the best we can.”
If they don't like being on the city council together, they will only serve for two years together. Bacon will be termed out in 2020. There are no plans to ever run against each other. They both want to support one another.