California News

Oct 25, 2010 9:44 PM by Ariel Wesler

Race for 23rd Congressional District could be unusually competitive

Tonight, we're highlighting the race for the 23rd Congressional District. It spans sections of Ventura, Santa Barbara, and San Luis Obispo counties, stretching from Oxnard in the south to the Monterey County line. The incumbent Democrat Lois Capps has served six terms. Two years ago, she won with 68 percent of the vote, but her biggest challenge is coming from her Republican opponent Tom Watson.

In the past, the race has been a shoe in for Democratic Representative Lois Capps, but this year, her opponents Libertarian Darrel Stafford, Republican Tom Watson, and Independent candidate John Hager, say voters are unhappy with the status quo. The big topic? Small businesses and jobs.

"When you raise taxes on the owners of those small companies like Representative Capps wants to do, 'Oh we need to raise taxes on people making over 250 grand a year,' couples, that's not going to help our economy," Watson said.

"One of the reasons I'm eager to get back to congress to continue the pattern we have been doing, which is to give targeted tax cuts to small businesses and individuals as well, focusing on the middle class," Capps said.

"We need to get regulators to make it easier on banks to feel comfortable granting small business loans to businesses that they have confidence in," Hager said.

As for improving education?

"If we left the money here in California and not have all these federal mandates telling us what to do with our school system," Watson said.

"I affirmed my desire to help bring federal resources to keep teachers in the classroom," Capps said.

"If we have 5 or 10 percent who are not performing, we need to have an easier time getting them either from the classroom into another position or if their not satisfactory employees to have them removed," Hager said.

Ultimately, they all agree they want your vote and here's why.

"Listening to the needs of the different communities and I like to bring home resources for them so that our private sector can grow and the quality of life can be improved," Capps said.

"I don't believe we're being governed now as much as we're being ruled and I will be a representative that will listen to you and will do the right thing. I won't waste your money," Watson said.

"I am not an adherent of either party platform so I can take a position that helps build bridges between the parties," Hager said.

Political parties hoping to celebrate next week.

We contacted Libertarian candidate Darrel Stafford, but he declined our request for an interview.

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