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Republican Launches Bid to Succeed Lois Capps in California

Capps will not seek re-election. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)
Capps will not seek re-election. (Bill Clark/CQ Roll Call File Photo)

Republicans have landed a top recruit for a competitive open-seat House race in California.  

State Assemblyman Katcho Achadjian will launch his campaign Friday in the race to replace retiring Democratic Rep. Lois Capps in the coastal Santa Barbara-based 24th District. Achadjian will hold a kick-off event at 2 p.m. ET at the Santa Barbara County Courthouse, according to a news release. His state Assembly district overlaps with a large portion of the congressional district, and the release already lists a line of local elected officials backing his candidacy.  

President Barack Obama carried the 24th in 2012 by an 11-point margin. But Capps barely won a ninth term two years later in a rough midterm for Democrats across the country, defeating a lackluster GOP opponent by just 3 points.  

In the week since her retirement announcement, a number of other candidates have already entered the race.  

On the Democratic side, Santa Barbara County Supervisor Salud Carbajal and Santa Barbara Mayor Helene Schneider announced bids. Laura Capps, a consultant and the congresswoman’s daughter, is also mulling a bid.  

Republican Justin Fareed, vice president of Santa Barbara-based Pro Band Sports Industries, is also running.  

In California, all candidates run on the same primary ballot. The top two vote recipients, regardless of party, advance to the general.  


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