High-profile government watchdog and critic plans run for 24th District seat representing the Central Coast
Andy Caldwell, executive director of the Coalition of Labor, Agriculture and Business, plans to challenge incumbent Salud Carbajal for the 24th District seat on Congress.
Caldwell sent a letter to his supporters that he also shared with Noozhawk.
“Unfortunately, Salud Carbajal wholeheartedly supports the Democratic Party’s remarkable shift to the extreme left that has completely shocked our great nation,” Caldwell wrote. “Lost in all the partisan bickering and gridlock having to do with the 24/7/365 anti-Trump agenda?
“A focus on, and attention to, the needs of the Central Coast having to do with such things as the continued threat of wildfires and debris flows, water shortages, traffic gridlock, failing infrastructure, and the like. Moderates, independents and conservatives are thereby interested in setting new priorities for our country and the Central Coast.”
Caldwell is the executive director of COLAB — the Coalition of Labor, Agriculture and Business. He said that he has never had any personal political ambitions, but many people are urging him to run for the seat.
“Over the course of the past two years, on Salud Carbajal’s watch, we have witnessed a remarkably dramatic and rapidly escalating shift in the Democratic Party away from American loving to America shaming,” Caldwell said. “Away from capitalism towards socialism, replete with profligate spending proposals that will bankrupt this country fiscally for sure, yet equally troubling, it will bankrupt our foundations by removing any incentive for independence, replacing it with government dependence.”
He said in his letter to supporters that “many threats to our country this day, from within and without, have motivated me to seek a job transfer, if you will, as a government watchdog and an advocate for our area’s farmers, ranchers, and small businesses, from the Central Coast to Washington, DC, in order to serve the people directly.
“The time is more than right. I have been convinced I can serve most effectively by making my voice, that is, your voice of reason, resonate in the halls of Congress.”
The 24th District encompasses Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties, and a portion of Ventura County.
Caldwell said his priorities include job creation, reducing poverty and “breaking the never-ending cycle of fires, floods and fools which continues to threaten lives, homes, infrastructure, and habitat.”
He said he is committed to saving Social Security and Medicare for seniors, and to “securing our border, creating a robust guest-worker program, and fairly resolving the issue of dreamers.”
Carbajal did not return Noozhawk’s calls seeking a comment.
Carbajal served 12 years on the Santa Barbara County Board of Supervisors before he was elected to Congress in 2016.
“Carbajal is nothing less than a lifelong bureaucrat and career politician,” Caldwell said. “Salud Carbajal has also undermined border security, and subverted our constitution by the pursuit of impeachment proceedings against our duly elected President Donald Trump.
“His party is now fully embracing socialism, exorbitant tax rates, open borders, energy suicide, and abortion without limits, up to and including infanticide.”
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