District 3 Debate: Garamendi v. Vann

No question: redistricting has shaken up the political landscape in California. The newly-drawn District 3 stretches from Rio Vista and Fairfield in the south to Colusa and Willows in the north. John Garamendi (D-Walnut Grove) is running for re-election, but was displaced from his incumbency in District 10 when the new district lines were drawn.

Both Garamendi and his challenger, Republican Kim Vann were guests Friday on KQED’s Forum.

Vann, a former Colusa County supervisor, focused her comments almost exclusively on supporting businesses through the entire discussion. When asked how she would create jobs, she pointed to her record.

“I’ll do it the very same way I’ve done it as a county supervisor,” she told Forum host Dave Iverson, “get government out of the way, make sure that the businesses understand what the rules are, not constantly changing the game and changing rules through over-reaching regulations. Making sure we have a good, solid tax code that people can understand.”

Garamendi blamed Republican obstructionism which, he says, has blocked passage of President Obama’s American Jobs Act. He then promoted his own plan to build the economy. “It is this,” he said, “spend our tax money on American-made products. This is really something that can make a difference — in Sacramento. Siemens, the big German manufacturing company, has built a manufacturing plant to build 70 locomotives for Amtrak. This is part of the stimulus money, revamping the Amtrak system with new locomotives, 100% American made. … That’s taxpayer dollars being spent in America, on American made equipment.”

But Vann called the idea of more regulation a “band-aid” that would not address the core economic problems. “We adamantly refuse to address why businesses are not function at a high level in this country,” she said. “We are over regulating them. We are over taxing them. We are not giving them the confidence they need to grow their business. And adding another regulation is not going to fix that.”

Another big topic on the campaign trail is health care. Vann said she would join Republican colleagues in voting to repeal the Affordable Care Act. “This comes down to another situation where there are really good parts to it with some unintended outcomes,” Vann said. “This bill was put together with politics in mind first. Not the relationship between the patient and the doctor.”

Garamendi has a long record in California politics and he pointed to his tenure as Insurance Commissioner when discussing his support for the health care law.  “I was the Insurance Commissioner in California for eight years,” he said. “And I understand what the private health insurance companies can do to people. It is the Affordable Care Act that pushes the insurance companies to provide insurance.”

You can listen to the 30-minute discussion here:

  • Do your research

    Wow you guys reallt messed up with this article. The map you provided is NOT the new 3rd district and your geographic description in the first paragraph is NOT the geography of the district. Better fix it.

    • http://blogs.kqed.org/stateofhealth Lisa Aliferis, KQED

      Thank you for pointing out the error. We now link to the correct map. We also changed the description in the first paragraph to reflect the correct geography of the district.