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Republican gubernatorial candidate holds campaign stop in Santa Maria

Posted at 10:40 PM, Oct 25, 2022

A Republican candidate for California Governor visited northern Santa Barbara County on Tuesday.

State Senator Brian Dahle is on a campaign tour from Chico to San Diego.

KSBY reporter Austin Herbaugh caught up with Dahle on Tuesday as he met with voters and supporters in Santa Maria.

“We need to actually drive down the taxes-- we need to drive down the regulations--we need hard-working Californians to be able to stay in California,” said Dahle at an event where dozens gathered to meet him.

“I’m really tired of inflation, homelessness, and crime,” said SLO Republican Party Leadership Director Sandy Gong.

“As a farmer, he understands our farming issues, our water issues,” added Debi Cloud, manager at Santa Maria Republican Headquarters.

Dahle says his top priorities are combatting inflation, bringing down energy costs as well as combatting crime and homelessness.

“Inflation is just crushing Californians, the middle class is being destroyed in California,” he said. “So, we have to drive down the cost of energy—that’s gasoline, diesel. That helps your food costs go down.”

Newsom’s campaign website-- on the other—hand, says:

“Under Governor Newsom, California is doing more than ever before to lower the cost of necessities that matter most for families – housing, childcare, retirement, and higher education.”

Dahle currently represents California’s 1st Senate District in northeastern California which includes places like Auburn, Redding, and the Mount Shasta area.

He says that he has the experience to bring voters together.

“Obviously, this is California-- it’s a blue state and I have that ability to work across party lines to get things done.”

Michael Latner--a political science professor at Cal Poly--says Dahle faces an uphill battle.

“Newsom has a pretty commanding lead in terms of votes, the polls suggest that as well,” he said, adding that it’s not necessarily because voters approve of Newsom.

He says recent polls show most Californians are skeptical about the direction California is heading but those skeptics are still supporting Newsom’s re-election campaign.

“The reason that this race is not particularly close is not because California voters are overwhelmingly happy with the Governor’s performance, but because the opposition party hasn’t really put up a credible candidate,” said Latner.

The only televised debate between Newsom and Dahle aired Sunday on the PBS station in the Bay Area.

We reached out to Governor Newsom’s office for a response and are waiting to hear back.

This week, the Governor vowed to serve a full term if re-elected. That was in response to rumors that he’s thinking of running for President.