34th Congressional District Special Election Tomorrow

district34mapheader
Map of the 34th Congressional District, which includes the eastern part of the Buzz’s coverage area.

For many of our readers, tomorrow, April 4, will be just another Tuesday.  But for some others – those living in the 34th Congressional District, which extends east from Crenshaw, between Beverly Blvd. and the 10 freeway, further on toward downtown, east LA, and north through Mt. Washington and Eagle Rock – Tuesday, April 4 will be yet another local election day, with a special election taking place to fill the Congressional seat recently vacated by Xavier Becerra (he held it for 25 years, before being appointed California’s Attorney General a few months ago).

Technically, this is a primary election and there are 23 candidates on the ballot (19 Democrats, one Republican and three others).  The two top vote-getters will advance to the final election on June 6…unless one of the 23 candidates in tomorrow’s election receives more than 50% of the vote, in which case this election will be considered final.

With so many candidates on the ballot, you may be wondering how to sort through them.  To make it a bit easier, we’ve listed them all below, including links to their websites, fundraising totals (which can be a good indicator of overall support), and endorsements each has received so far.  For even more information, the LA Times has a good round-up, and Ballotopedia has some additional information, too.

Finally, it’s worth noting that based on fundraising and endorsements, Robert Lee Ahn, Jimmy Gomez, and Sara Hernandez seem to be the current front-runners…but with so many candidates in the mix, it’s going to be hard to predict the final results.  Turnout will certainly play a large role…so if you live in the 34th District, please don’t forget to vote!

Democratic

ahnRobert Lee Ahn
Former Los Angeles city planning commissioner
Position/statement/issues:  Affordable health care, quality education and affordable colleges, climate change and environmental protection, humane immigration reform, support for Israel and South Korea, improving health care and other services for veterans.
Funds raised (according to the Federal Elections Commission): $633,702
Endorsements: City Council Member David Ryu, Carolyn Ramsay, Virginia Congressman Mark Keam

 

aramayoVanessa Aramayo
Public affairs consultant
Position/statement/issues: “Our future is more uncertain now than ever before. Whether you’re a student, senior, child of an aging parent, mom or dad, we share one common goal – we want economic security and equal opportunities. I have spent my career DELIVERING RESULTS that improve the lives of hard working individuals and families. I am running for Congress because I want to support and look out for the community that has supported and looked out for me. My work in government, politics, and in non-profits have allowed me to understand the issues we are facing, but it’s my ‘real-life’ experiences that allow me to connect with your struggles. I am not afraid to speak out against unjust policies and those who propose them. For years, I have fought and delivered for families, let me fight and deliver for yours by sending me to Congress.”
Funds raised: $14,793
Endorsements: Former Congresswoman Jane Harman, Former State Assembly Majority Leader Dario Frommer

 

cabildoMaria Cabildo
Activist
Position/statement/issues: “I have dedicated my professional career to building opportunities for every family. That is what I have always done, and that is what I will do in Congress.”
Funds raised: $130,384
Endorsements: Los Angeles Times, Latinas Lead California, Jackie Goldberg (former LAUSD board member, City Council member, and CA State Assembly member), LA County Supervisor Sheila Keuhl

 

campoverdiAlejandra Campoverdi
Former deputy director of Hispanic media for President Obama
Position/statement/issues: “As an aide in the Obama White House, I proudly worked to help pass Obamacare because I knew it would save lives. I never imagined one of those lives might be my own. Breast cancer took my grandmother’s life, it nearly took my mom’s. I carry a gene that gives me an 85% chance of developing that same cancer. This debate isn’t about politics. It’s personal, for millions of Americans. Join us in the fight to protect access to affordable healthcare for all Americans by donating to our campaign. We’re all in this together.”
Funds raised: $156,433
Endorsements: unknown

 

carmonaArturo Carmona
Former campaign aide for the Bernie Sanders presidential campaign
Position/statement/issues: “I vividly remember the hate and some of the insults we encountered as we marched along the National Mall. But I will never forget the pride I felt standing alongside my hardworking father, other immigrant families, and our allies standing together in unison. It was one of the first times that I envisioned myself carrying through a lifetime commitment to protect working families and fight for social justice.”
Funds raised: $112,223
Endorsements: The Political Revolution, National Nurses United, Actor Danny Glover

 

carrilloWendy Carrillo
Activist
Position/statement/issues: “We are living in a moment of urgency. A moment in which our country is demanding new vision, leadership and courage. It is obvious with the results of our recent presidential election that the same establishment “politics as usual” don’t work anymore. Large segments of this country have been ignored by our representatives in Washington DC. The 34th Congressional District is no different. Voters now have an opportunity to send a message to our nation’s capital that they don’t agree with the way things are headed. We can send a representative to replace Xavier Becerra who will stand up for the people of this district and stand up to President Trump.”
Funds raised: $83,273
Endorsements: Latino Coalition of Los Angeles PAC, four national co-chairs and artistic director of the Women’s March, Democracy for America

 

delafuenteRicardo De La Fuente
Businessman
Position/statement/issues: “I am running because I want to fight for families, the inner city, and small businesses…As a second-generation American, I have experienced the struggle of discrimination, and I want to champion all of our community. My family has a long history of working between Mexico and the United States to create jobs. I want to bring that experience to support our communities’ small business, support families, stand up for our citizens against President Trump’s bad policies but work with his administration when it benefits the District.”
Funds raised: $28,952
Endorsements: unknown

 

edwardsAdrienne Nicole Edwards
Community organizer
Position/statement/issues: “Los Angeles flourishes as the cultural center of California. The 34th Congressional District has more foreign born residents than any other congressional district in the state. For everyone in our community, every issue is different. We can no longer stand to let those differences divide us. Now, more than ever, we need to be strong and united to take on the challenges that we face in our community. As your representative, I will work with the other members of Congress to ensure that the needs of my constituents are being heard and met. I will continue to fight for the people of California’s 34th Congressional District and urge you to be the change that you want to see in our community. I am ready to work and be your voice in Washington.”
Funds raised: $20
Endorsements: unknown

 

floresYolie Flores
Former LAUSD board member
Position/statement/issues: Immigration, education, housing, health care, labor, diversity and inclusion. “If you came to this country seeking a better life for your family and you work hard and follow the law like my parents did, then you belong here. My father came to this country in the Bracero program, and I carry his story with me. It is morally wrong to tear families apart and separate children from their parents. We urgently need a pathway to citizenship for undocumented people in the US. I will stand up to Donald Trump and his racist policies, including recent deportations and criminalizing all undocumented immigrants.”
Funds raised: $127,677
Endorsements: Former Los Angeles Mayor Richard Riordan, National Association of Social Workers, former candidate for State Superintendent of Public Instruction Marshall Tuck, L.A. School Police Union, LAUSD Board Member Ref Rodriguez

 

garzaMelissa “Sharkie” Garza
Filmmaker
Position/statement/issues: Economy, education, environment, health care, immigration, term limits. “In the ocean, sharks maintain and oversee the delicate balance that is needed in the ocean’s ecosystem. Sharkie is running for congress because she believes that a true shark (not a typical lawyer or politician) is needed in Washington D.C. to protect, preserve, defend, and fight for the people of District 34.”
Funds raised: no data found
Endorsements: unknown

 

gomezJimmy Gomez
CA State Assemblyman
Position/statement/issues:  Quality, debt-free education, health care, immigration reform, jobs, paid family leave and working families, protecting the environment and fighting climate change, women’s rights, seniors, LGBTQIA rights, campaign finance reform, criminal justice reform, animal welfare.
Funds raised: $244,766
Endorsements: The California Democratic Party,  SEIU California, California Attorney General Xavier Becerra, Sierra Club, California League of Conservation Voters, U.S. Senator Kamala Harris, CA State Senate President Pro tem Kevin de Leon, CA Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, Los Angeles County Supervisor Hilda Solis, Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti, Los Angeles County Federation of Labor, AFL-CIO, United Farm Workers of America (UFW), Planned Parenthood Action Fund, California Treasurer John Chiang, California State Controller Betty Yee, Los Angeles City Council President Herb Wesson, Los Angeles Councilmembers Gil Cedillo, Mitch O’Farrell, Bob Blumenfield, Paul Koretz, Stonewall Democratic Club, American Federation of State County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME),  Communications Workers of America, Laborers’ International Union of North America (LiUNA), United Nurses Associations of California – Union of Healthcare Professionals (UNAC-UHCP), Painters and Allied Trades District Council 36, International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers (IBEW) Locals 11 and 18, Los Angeles City Attorney Mike Feuer…and many others.

 

hernandezSara Hernandez
Former downtown director for L.A. City Council Member Jose Huizar
Position/statement/issues: “I’m running for Congress because I believe in Los Angeles, from the progressive values we share, to the diversity we celebrate. Today, our communities are under attack in Washington DC, and I’m ready to stand-up on behalf of the 34th District to protect the Los Angeles we all love. We need fighters in DC right now. I am the daughter of civil rights lawyers who fought for the rights of farm workers in the fields of Salinas. They instilled in me a deep commitment to equality and the American Dream, and a conviction that justice is always worth fighting for.”
Funds raised: $230,283
Endorsements: CA State Assembly Member Anna Caballero, former Los Angeles Controller and City Council Member Wendy Greuel, Patti Berman, Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood Council President, Jay Park, Pico-Union Neighborhood Council President, Mara Elliot, City Attorney, City of San Diego, Anthony Manzano, LA- 32 Neighborhood Council President, Ellen Endo, President of the Little Tokyo Business Association, Jonathan Jerald, LA River and Business Association (LARABA) Founding Boardmember, Jackie Carrillo, LA 32 Neighborhood Council Boardmember, Robert Newman, Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood Council Vice President, Ariana Nussdorff, Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood Council Boardmember, Kathy Leal, LA 43 Neighborhood Council Boardmember, Cynthia Rodriguez, Pico Union Neighborhood Council Boardmember, David Torres, Pico Union Neighborhood Council Vice President, Peter Sean, Pico Union Neighborhood Council Boardmember, Jacob Van Horn, Downtown Los Angeles Neighborhood Council Boardmember, and others.

 

macSteven Mac
Los Angeles County prosecutor
Position/statement/issues:  “Los Angeles is a global city with global challenges. The way we successfully address these challenges should serve as a model to the country and the world. To fully represent this entire district, it is not enough to oppose the Trump Administration. This district requires a focused vision that brings federal resources to Los Angeles for the economy, housing, education, jobs, transportation, energy, water management, law enforcement, emergency response, and infrastructure. These issues are matters central to the U.S. economy and national security. I will fight for our people with the vision of victory that Los Angeles is a model for the world. Nearly all of our Democratic priorities are in jeopardy. My top four national priorities are the issues that will have generational impact if we fail in facing them: people will die, democracy will be threatened, and the world will be without the U.S. as a leader for peace.”
Funds raised: $16,102
Endorsements: unknown

 

mendozaSandra Mendoza
Program manager at L.A. city clerk’s office
Position/statement/issues: “Washington’s climate calls for a new kind of leadership not more of the same. My priorities are in sync with the people of the district: Fight to secure healthcare for all, push back against cuts to Medicare and Medicaid. Preserve social security for our seniors and coming generations. Pursue sound immigration policies that will protect hard working everyday people and prevent further separation of families. Ensure that our public education system is not raided by newly proposed legislation. Protect our environment against a climate change denying administration. I am not financed by developers, nor lobbyists, or other special interests. I would be representing THE PEOPLE not those that paid my way there. In the long-term I will be an advocate for stricter campaign finance.”
Funds raised: $11,040
Endorsements: Women’s Campaign Fund, civil rights and labor leader Dolores Huerta

 

mezaRaymond Meza
SEIU organizer
Position/statement/issues: “The most important fights are about our fundamental values – healthcare is about the right to see a doctor when you’re sick. Public education should be free. Immigration is about keeping families together. And we need to create jobs that pay a living wage so workers can provide for our families.”
Funds raised: $30,664
Endorsements: unknown

 

sotomayorArmando Sotomayor
Community volunteer
Position/statement/issues: “Among the challenges facing our senior community are: affordable, reliable and timely transportation. Safe and affordable housing. Meals on wheels programs. Senior centers that offer companionship, exercise and intellectual stimulation. Partnership with schools and libraries to impart the benefits of their real life experiences and wisdom with our children.”
Funds raised: no data found
Endorsements: unknown

 

sullivanRichard Joseph Sullivan
Attorney
Position/statement/issues: Immigration, housing, jobs and economy, transportation, health care, reduction of government, constitutional rights, LGBT rights, free internet, women’s rights, private jails, support for culture and the arts, environment and clean energy, food/GMOs, education, union support, marijuana/war on drugs, jury trials for civil actions, veterans.
Funds raised: no data found
Endorsements: unknown

 

vanhoutenTracy Van Houten
Aerospace engineer
Position/statement/issues: Immigration, environment, health care, homelessness, law enforcement and racial profiling, education, LGBTQ rights, money in politics. “Los Angeles must rise together to fight Trump — and I will bring the passion of a mother and the drive of an engineer to D.C.”
Funds raised: $88,109
Endorsements: California Congressman Jerry McNerney

 

wallaceTenaya Wallace
Strategist
Position/statement/issues: “At a time when it feels all we can do is #resist, we must also clearly and creatively paint this vision of our future by sharing what we are FOR. We are FOR: Freedom with opportunity for all, responsibility to all, and cooperation among all. Government that advances the common good and secures and protects our rights. An economy that works for everyone, not just the few, with decent paying jobs and benefits for workers. Investment in sustainable economic growth and a green economy. Upholding universal human rights and to work together to solve common challenges. These are my three policy priorities to advance a progressive agenda: 1. Campaign Finance Reform, 2. A Green Economy, 3. Social Justice.”
Funds raised: no data found
Endorsements: unknown

 

 

Republican

morrisonWilliam Morrison
Apartment building manager
Position/statement/issues: “I am running 4 CD34 because we face many issues of Homelessness in this District. Throughout America, R Senior Citizens R hurt as well. It is time 4 true leader.”
Funds raised: no data found
Endorsements: unknown

 

 

 

Third Party/Other

Green Party
meijaKenneth Mejia
Accountant
Position/statement/issues: “As time passes, our income remains the same but our costs continue to rise. Wealth and Income Inequality in this nation has continued to grow over the past 40 years while a majority of the wealth generated by the middle class gets transferred to the top 1% of this country. The middle class is disappearing every year and in District 34 of Los Angeles, Wealth and Income Inequality hits harder when compared to the nation. In District 34 of Los Angeles, 1 out of every 5 families are living below the poverty line and don’t have health insurance. Families are working 50, 60 hours trying to survive so that they can decide whether they can put food on the table, a roof over their children’s head, or if their child can go to school. Students cannot afford to go to college or they leave college without jobs and end up in tens of thousands of dollars in student debt. Families are worried if their undocumented family members will be deported or whether they will be able to come out of the shadows. In addition, our planet is slowly dying as we allow the fossil fuel industry to extract natural resources from the ground only to be polluting our air, increasing climate change, and putting the entire human race under extinction. As the wealthiest nation on Earth, it is time to put People, Planet, and Peace over Profits!”
Funds raised:  $35,682
Endorsements: 2016 Presidential Green Party candidate Dr. Jill Stein, Los Angeles County Green Party

 

Libertarian Party
mcardleAngela McArdle
Attorney
Position/statement/issues: “I’ve seen firsthand how our government has harmed good people while rewarding the bad. Yet, I’m still confident I can represent the interests of all Californians in the House of Representatives. I wonder if you can join me in my fight while I do my part to help tame the federal beast that casts its citizens aside in its insatiable thirst for power to the detriment of all Americans.”
Funds raised: $6,713
Endorsements: unknown

 

 

Independent
padillaMark Edward Padilla
Immigration Law Office Administrator
Position/statement/issues: “As your Congressman I will…work to help single parent homes find a ladder out of poverty, work to strengthen programs to build foster families, wll work to curtail the intrusive indoctrination of Plan Parenthood while still protecting the good healthcare provisions for women, fight special interest, because they will not relinquish their income, our money without a fight, invest and support educators that are committed to the success of their students, work with the business community to help them be successful as they offer fair compensation to their employees, work to keep our country and our allies safe from terrorism and all those that wish us harm, work to promote the fruits of democracy to the world through our organizations of good will, work to keep the economic agreements that bring jobs to our families and build new ones those open markets for our goods and products, fight to reduce the overextended reach of pornography effects in our younger generations, protect the vulnerable, seniors, veterans and children, including the unborn, fight for comprehensive smart immigration reform.”
Funds raised: $12,625
Endorsements: unknown

 

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