In less than a month, Central Coast voters will decide who they to represent them in Washington D.C.
The 24th congressional race is between a Democratic incumbent and a Republican businessman.
After his freshman term in the House, Rep. Salud Carbajal says he’s ready to continue working for his constituents.
During his two years on Capitol Hill, Carbajal says he’s written legislation to address Central Coast issues and worked across the aisle to get it done.
“I’m happy to report that over 50 percent of my bills have been bipartisan,” Carbajal said.
The Democratic congressman says his top priority is job creation and has a plan to offset the effects of the Diablo Canyon power plant closures.
“I think investing in a renewable energy employment sector will allow us to have that positive impact in alleviating the impact that the closure of Diablo Canyon Power Plant is going to have,” he said.
Carbajal legally immigrated to the United States as a child so for him, immigration reform is personal and top of mind.
“I think we need to pass comprehensive immigration reform that gets to the heart of providing a path to citizenship for individuals who can stay here, continue to contribute to our economy and also to make sure our farms and agriculture communities have the type of labor that they need,” said Carbajal.
He calls President Trump’s border wall a waste of taxpayer money.
“[Undocumented people] that are here creating crimes, violent crimes, should be apprehended, brought to justice and deported,” Carbajal said.
In the last two years, the 24th district has been ravaged by wildfires and deadly floods.
After seeing the devastation in Montecito, Carbajal helped establish an annual $2.4 billion fund for fire prevention and forest management.
On the topic of water, he’s pushing for federal funding that will allow communities to invest in desalination, reuse and reinjection.
Healthcare costs, including the high price of prescription drugs, are also a top concern for Carbajal.
“I think we need to put in a public option that will allow for more competition with our private insurance companies.”
If Carbajal succeeds in being re-elected, he will begin his second term in Congress.
“I’m going to continue to work hard to listen to my constituents and make sure I’m representing their interests in Washington D.C.”
KSBY anchor Christina Favuzzi interviews Carbajal’s challenger, Justin Fareed, this Wednesday.
KSBY will host a live debate between the congressional candidates this Saturday at 7 p.m. If you have a question for the candidates, please send it to us at firstname.lastname@example.org.