Independent, UCSB Hosting Capps vs. Maldonado Debate

Congressional Candidates Square Off October 9

This fall, one of the nation’s most-watched races for the United States Congress is taking place here on the California coast, when Representative Lois Capps, a Democrat from Santa Barbara, faces off against challenger Abel Maldonado, a Republican from Santa Maria and the state’s former lieutenant governor.

To get a better sense of where each candidate stands on the important issues facing the federal government, The Santa Barbara Independent and UC Santa Barbara’s Carsey-Wolf Center are presenting one of the only live public debates between Capps and Maldonado this election season. The forum will be on Tuesday, October 9, at 7 p.m. in the Pollock Theater on the UCSB campus, the same day that absentee ballots are mailed out to voters.

Tickets are free, but must be reserved online in advance at A wine and cheese reception, sponsored by Pali Wine Co. and Jack’s Bistro, will follow the event. Other cosponsors include UCSB’s Department of Political Science, Department of Communication, KCSB 91.9 FM, which will air the debate live, and TVSB, which will be showing replays of the debate until Election Day.

The race for the 24th Congressional District has taken center stage as one of the most important races across the country, as Republicans try to grow their lead in the House of Representatives. Democrats, meanwhile, are pledging that the race to take back the House runs straight through the State of California.

The newly drawn 24th Congressional district encompasses San Luis Obispo County, Santa Barbara County, and a small stretch of Ventura County. Capps, currently the representative of the 23rd District, has been in the House of Representatives since 1998. Maldonado, a former mayor of Santa Maria as well as a former state senator and assemblymember, most recently served as lieutenant governor under governor Arnold Schwarzenegger.

Moderating the event will be Professor John Woolley of UCSB’s Department of Political Science, and Chris Meagher, news reporter for The Santa Barbara Independent. In addition to their inquiries, there will be a number of questions from UCSB students. This will be one of the only times during the campaign that both candidates are on-stage, answering questions, in front of a live audience.

For those unable to attend, the event will be streamed live on and; those sites will also offer an archive of the footage, as well, and TVSB will be replaying the debate frequently on Santa Barbara’s community access channel.

EVENT INFO: The Santa Barbara Independent and UCSB’s Carsey-Wolf Center present Lois Capps vs. Abel Maldonado, A Debate for the Future of the 24th Congressional District, on Tuesday, October 9, 2012, at 7 p.m., in the Pollock Theater on the UCSB campus.

FOR THE PUBLIC: Tickets for the debate are free, but seating is limited and expected to sell out fast. Visit to reserve your seat. There is also an overflow room in Buchanan Hall. A reception will follow for those in attendance at the Pollock Theater, and a panel about the debate will also occur in Buchanan Hall.

FOR THE MEDIA: In order to ensure the most possible access to the general public, only a few seats will be held for the working media within the Pollock Theater, although there will be plenty of seats in the Buchanan Hall overflow room. Television and radio connections will be provided, and photography will be dispersed as part of a pool. To reserve your media ticket, contact

FOR MORE INFORMATION: Contact The Santa Barbara Independent at (805) 965-5205, or email

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