Industry News

California’s new insurance commissioner sworn in

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California's new insurance commissioner, Silicon Valley entrepreneur Steve Poizner, was sworn into office Monday, promising to lower insurance rates by attacking fraud and to make earthquake insurance more attractive to homeowners.  Poizner, along with Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger, was one of only two Republicans elected to higher office in the November election in a state where Democrats control the Legislature. Sounding not unlike Gov. Schwarzenegger in his inaugural speech, the first-time officeholder promised to "divorce the job from politics as usual," saying, "Consumer protection is not a Republican or a Democratic affair." He promised to work to make his office nonpartisan, which would allow voters to cast votes for candidates for insurance commissioner in the 2010 primary election regardless of party affiliation. Poizner said "insurance must be made available to all Californians at fair and reasonable prices," and mentioned auto, life and workers' compensation insurance in...