Nine candidates debate at Cal Poly for the 24th Congressional District seat
Phil Klein, Santa Maria Times

On May 6 and 13, KCRW and The Santa Barbara Independent are co-hosting two forums that will collectively feature all nine of the candidates running for the 24th Congressional district, which stretches from downtown Ventura north into all of Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties.

The May 6 forum will be held before a live audience at the New Vic Theater in downtown Santa Barbara, and broadcast live from 7 to 8 p.m. The May 13 forum will be held in-studio and broadcast live as well from 7 to 8 p.m.

The questions asked in this questionnaire are:

  • Given how dysfunctional Congress is now, how do you intend to get anything done?
  • How would you prevent another oil spill like the Refugio Spill in Santa Barbara?
  • After the recent San Bernardino shooting and the shootings in Isla Vista, how would you reshape laws surrounding gun control?
  • This March, Immigration and Custom Enforcement officials raided Bonita Packing Company in Santa Maria and forced the company to fire 291 farm workers because of their non-legal immigration status. According to the Central Coast Alliance United for a Sustainable Economy, about 72% of the roughly 17,000 farm workers in Santa Barbara County are undocumented. This comes when there is a 25% labor shortage in the county, according to the Agricultural Advisory Committee. How would you handle the issue of undocumented workers and the need for labor across the district?
  • Recent studies have shown that on average students graduate with $30,000 in student debt. What would you do to help make college more affordable?

Click each candidate’s name below to see their responses to the questionnaire:

Katcho Achadjian

Salud Carbajal

Justin Fareed

Steve Isakson

Matt Kokkonen

Benjamin Lucas

William Ostrander

Helene Schneider

John Uebersax


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