Radio host, ex-councilman joins crowded field in bid to replace Alpine congressman

Radio show host and former San Diego City Councilman DeMaio (left) wants to unseat fellow Republican Duncan Hunter. DeMaio announced his candidacy for the 50 Congressional District Seat on Monday.

Former San Diego city councilman and current radio personality Carl DeMaio announced Monday he will run in 2020 for the congressional seat currently held by Duncan Hunter, Jr.
DeMaio suggested that the race for the 50th Congressional District might not begin with the primary election on March 3, 2020 but could instead happen as early as January 2020 if Hunter—who faces a September trial in federal court for alleged misuse of campaign funds— is found guilty and sentenced for criminal behavior.
Although a criminal sentence would not require the Republican congressman to step down from his seat, Hunter has already stepped down from participating in various congressional committees.
DeMaio said that he waited until now to pursue his candidacy because he was
focused on obtaining at least the 584,000 minimum signatures needed to put Proposition 6 on the November 2018 ballot, and was further occupied with gaining additional signatures and support for the measure.
Proposition 6 would have re¬pealed Senate Bill 1, the Road Repair and Accountability Act but did not pass.
“I felt that that effort needed my 100% attention and remember, I never start something unless I have the bandwidth to carry it through to completion in a way that everyone would be proud. If I’m going to ask others to help me, I’m going to make sure that whatever we’re doing is going to be as effective and solid as possible… as I was watching the race, I was feeling bad and wondered, you know, maybe I should have done both but those are the woulda-coulda-shouldas,” DeMaio said.
There are four items on DeMaio’s issue agenda: securing the border, fixing Congress, protecting the Second Amendment, and continuing with his Reform California initiative which would fight tax increases, weed out ineligible voters, reform citizens’ initiatives on ballots, prevent new taxes on gasoline, and reform pension policies.
DeMaio said he has watched Hunter delay the inevitable and not really do a good job on the issues facing the district as a whole.
“One of the things that we have to look at that affect the rural-urban interface— and I think that Alpine certainly is that perfect community, we move to east county and north county because we like country living— yet now, you have new rules and regulations coming in that are being imposed by the state of California on land use,
on water restrictions, on mandates to go solar and it is very expensive… people in Alpine also have a longer commute when they do work in San Diego— the roads, the congestion, the gas tax certainly affect them.
“There is a lot of federal land out in east county and I think there is a big role for the federal government to play to push for the state of California to properly manage its land,” DeMaio said.
He also said he has concerns over homelessness and small business closures in the local area, and that he views California as a warning to the United States.
“I will use the congressional seat to shine a light on corruption and inefficiency in government. I will use my stature as a member of congress to raise resources nationally and across our state so that we can fight unfair and costly tax hikes and advance reform,” DeMaio said.
Former Escondido mayor Sam Abed (R), current Temecula council member Matt Rahn (R), current El Cajon Mayor Bill Wells (R), retired Naval SEAL Larry Wilske (R), and small business owner Ammar Campa-Najjar (D) have all announced their run for the 50th congressional district.
DeMaio previously served on the San Diego City Council from 2008 to 2012 representing District 5 where he pushed for pension and budget reform.
In 2012 the talk show host ran unsuccessfully for San Diego mayor and in 2014 made an unsuccessful bid for the 52nd congressional district. In 2018 he initiated a run for the 50th congressional but dropped out prior to the election.
Currently, DeMaio hosts an AM 600 radio show, The DeMaio Report.
He currently lives in Rancho Bernardo, a neighborhood in the 52nd Congressional Distrct.
Members of Congress are not required to live in the district which they represent.


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