Ahead of the Decision 2018: The Race for Congress debate KSBY is hosting this weekend, we are profiling the candidates, starting with Republican Justin Fareed and his third attempt at winning the 24th Congressional District.
"I think it’s a shame that many kids are born here and raised here and go to school here and they can’t afford to live here," the South Coast businessman said about jobs and the local economy being the most pressing issues in the 24th District.
He said he wants to make it easier for people to build businesses and hire more employees and that ensuring a trained workforce, by offering more vocational and trade schools, are key to good-paying jobs.
When it comes to the national economy, Fareed said the controversial spending package that raised the national debt to more than $20 trillion is caused by a broken budget system. His solution? "One budget for each Congress. So that’s a two-year budget system that would provide better oversight and management of taxpayer dollars."
When asked if would he have voted along party lines to pass the costly budget, he answered, "Well, I’m looking forward, I’m looking toward what can be done."
Fareed also said he supports moving toward renewable energy, but when asked whether he supports President Trump’s proposal to expand offshore oil drilling, Fareed said, "At this point in time, it seems to be more political rhetoric and posturing than an actual issue."
He does believe in a pathway to citizenship for undocumented immigrants. "We need to have a merit-based system that rewards good Samaritans, hard-working citizens and works to improve local communities."
Another way to improve communities, according to Fareed, is to support firefighters and their efforts to prevent wildfires by funding vegetation thinning and controlled burns, something he said incumbent Salud Carbajal voted against. "There was a disaster relief package brought to the floor that my opponent voted against bringing the vote to the floor, gambling with disaster relief."
On Wednesday, we’ll hear from Carbajal about issues facing the district and these claims he voted against fire prevention disaster relief spending.
You can hear more from the candidates Sunday, May 20, when they square off live in a debate on KSBY at 4 p.m.