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Salud Carbajal (third from left), has outspent his rivals for Congress; here, at a candidates forum in April, are Bill Ostrander (left) and Helene Schneider, and Justin Fareed (right) and Katcho Achadjian, with moderator Jon Bastian of KCRW in the center.

Paul Wellman (file)

Salud Carbajal (third from left), has outspent his rivals for Congress; here, at a candidates forum in April, are Bill Ostrander (left) and Helene Schneider, and Justin Fareed (right) and Katcho Achadjian, with moderator Jon Bastian of KCRW in the center.


Carbajal Biggest Spender in 24th

Congressional Candidates Spend over a Million; Parties Drop More


In the race to represent the 24th Congressional District, County Supervisor Salud Carbajal spent more than a half-million dollars between April 1 and May 18, according to the latest federal finance reports. Most went to his six TV ads. For this campaign, Carbajal has raised a whopping $1.9 million. He has $649,000 on hand; a portion of that is earmarked for the November general election. Democrat Helene Schneider, mayor of the City of Santa Barbara, spent $188,000 this reporting cycle and has $106,000 left. In total, she has raised about a third of what Carbajal has.

The two Republican frontrunners — Katcho Achadjian and Justin Fareed — both spent about $350,000 in the seven-week period. But Fareed still has $448,000 while Katcho Achadjian, a member of the State Assembly and the establishment favorite, has just $173,000 left.

These figures do not include the roughly $700,000 in independent expenditure committees set up by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) and Democratic political action committees. They back Carbajal and have unleashed a flurry of mailers and TV ads supporting him.

The Republican National Congressional Committee, meanwhile, has dropped $220,000. One TV ad attacked Carbajal for approving — along with three colleagues — a pay raise for the supes last year. The same ad props up Democrat Helene Schneider, taking language — supporting universal health care, for instance — straight from her campaign website. Another mailer portrays left-leaning Democrat Bill Ostrander next to Bernie Sanders, calling him “too liberal” for Congress. The Republican intent is to split the Democratic vote.

Ultra-conservative Matt Kokkonen, who is a financial planner in San Luis Obispo, receiving $4,500 this reporting period. He has $177,000 cash on hand; he gave himself about $200,000 earlier this year. Candidates Bill Ostrander, Steve Isakson, John Uebersax, and Benjamin Lucas have not filed pre-primary campaign finance forms.



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