The race for the U.S. House District 19 seat is down to two candidates.
Democrat Jimmy Panetta and Republican Jeff Gorman are facing off in the November General Election.
The district was just redrawn, now including northern San Luis Obispo County.
“The goal right now is to make sure that the 55 percent new voters of the new 19th Congressional District get to know me,” said Democratic candidate Jimmy Panetta.
“We want working people to be able to get the fuel they need to get to work. We want our kids well-educated, and we want to know that smart people are in charge of our national security,” said Republican candidate Jeff Gorman.
Panetta currently represents District 20.
“As someone who was raised here, I believe that I understand the obligations we have not just to live here, but to serve here,” Panetta said. “I think that's proven based on my service as a prosecutor, service in the U.S. Navy as an Afghanistan war vet, and then looking at my past six years as a representative for the Central Coast.”
Gorman is a Monterey resident serving as a financial adviser.
“My first job out of college was dealing with restructuring and helping Latin America get out of bankruptcy,” Gorman said. “My grandmother taught me as a little kid about fairness and about understanding and conceiving of a God that's watching injustice in it from a heavenly perspective.”
Both candidates say their goal is to preserve the Central Coast, assisting with the physical and financial landscape.
“I am making sure our beauty is protected, our bounty, and our agriculture is protected,” Panetta said. “We have military bases and bedrooms, making sure affordable housing is available for people.”
“All of us have an interest in the federal government balancing its budget, which the current government and the current Congress have utterly failed to do,” Gorman said. “That is why we have inflation.”
Panetta and Gorman emphasized being present in the new region as key points of their candidacy.
“I've made it a point to get down here in many of the communities here in the northern part of San Luis Obispo County,” Panetta said.
“Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, and Gavin Newsom have taken this country and the state in the wrong direction,” Gorman added.
The two candidates say they plan on focusing on the financial crisis.
“We've got to make sure that we play our part in the federal government by ensuring that there's lower gas prices,” Panetta said.
“There's a textbook way to get out of it,” Gorman said. “Balance your budget. Stop trying to have the government solve all your problems. I can bring that.”
Because of the redistricting, Panetta is considered the incumbent for the new District 19.
The new district includes Atascadero, Templeton, Paso Robles, San Miguel, Creston, Shandon, Cambria, San Simeon, and Lake Nacimiento, and stretches north along the coast into southern San Jose.