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Monterey County

Watsonville Democrat launches Panetta election challenge, Republican could soon follow

There is at least one challenger for Congressman Jimmy Panetta’s seat in California’s 20th Congressional District.

Watsonville resident Adam Scow announced his candidacy Tuesday morningat Watsonville’s City Plaza. Scow is running as a Democrat. Republican Jeff Gorman confirms with KION he is also considering a run for office.

Scow has spent his years advocating for a series of progressive issues in California and the Central Coast.

In a release sent to KION, Scow says “we are facing an affordability crisis locally and a climate crisis globally that threatens our very survival.” He adds, “people are leaving the Central Coast because they can no longer afford the rising costs of housing, health insurance, and education. We must bring back our federal tax dollars to build truly affordable housing as we did before budgets were slashed in the 1980s.

Scow is a Senior Strategist for Public Water Now – the group advocating a public buyout of the Cal Am water system on the Monterey Peninsula. He was previously the California Director for Food & Water Watch, and according to his campaign, was involved in efforts to ban fracking in Monterey County, Santa Cruz County and San Benito County.

He supports the Green New Deal, which is a progressive plan for strict new environmental policies.

Another person considering a run to challenge Panetta is Jeff Gorman. Gorman is the Chair of the Monterey County Republican Party Central Committee. While he has not announced his intention yet, he confirms with KION that FEC filings for “Jeff Gorman for Congress” are for a CA-20 candidacy.

In a statement to KION, Gorman said “I am taking the steps necessary to add a voice to the discussion. I believe many of the principals dear to the Republican minority are also important to the broader community. I look forward to a hearty debate.”

California’s 2020 primary election is on March 3rd. The state has an “open primary” system meaning that all candidates are on the same primary ballot regardless of party, and the top two candidates advance to the November general election.

Congressman Panetta was elected to District 20 in 2016.

California’s 20th Congressional District covers Monterey and San Benito Counties, and parts of Santa Clara and Santa Cruz Counties.

KION 2019

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KION546 News Team

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