Health-Care Issue Surfaces in Calif. Special Election
By Ben Pershing
With a Sept. 1 special election looming, a leading candidate for California's 10th District House seat has turned his campaign's focus to the issue currently preoccupying Washington: health-care reform.
Current Lt. Gov. John Garamendi (D) is one of more than a dozen candidates competing to succeed former representative Ellen Tauscher (D), who resigned from the East Bay-area seat in order to take a position at the State Department. Garamendi is the best-known contender, but under California's open primary all of the candidates will be on the ballot together, and if none reaches 50 percent, the top vote-getters from each party will face each other Nov. 3.
Seeking to distinguish himself from a crowded field, Garamendi unveiled a new television ad today on health care.
"We know that the more we spend; the more uninsured we have," Garamendi says in the ad. "We know that we are not getting the efficiency and effectiveness that we must have to have the quality health care that all of us need, so our families can thrive, so that our children can get educated, and so that this environment that I grew up in will be here for the next generation."
The 10th district leans decisively to the political left, and Garamendi, a former state insurance commissioner who has worked on health-care reform before, has made it clear where he stands in the current debate. "I support universal health care and will fight for a robust public option," Garamendi said in a press release announcing the ad, which will run through Election Day two weeks from today.
Along with Garamendi, other leading Democratic contenders for the seat include state Assemblywoman Joan Buchanan, Iraq war veteran Anthony Woods and state Sen. Mark DeSaulnier. Because of the district's tilt, the winner of the Democratic nod is expected to win the seat with ease.
UPDATE 4:58 PM: DeSaulnier went up with a health-care ad of his own in July. The spot, embedded below, touts him as a "leader" on the issue who fill fight to ensure "health care for all."
August 18, 2009; 4:05 PM ET
Categories: 2010 Campaign , Health Reform
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