Field of candidates taking shape in race to replace Capps
April 9, 2015
Three candidates have announced their intention to run in the congressional race to fill a seat that Rep. Lois Capps announced she would vacate at the end of her current term.
Capps released a video Wednesday in which she says that she will retire when her term ends late next year. Later in the day, former Republican candidate for Capps’ seat, Justin Fareed, and Democratic Santa Barbara Mayor Helene Schneider both announced they would run in the 2016 congressional election.
San Luis Obispo farmer Bill Ostrander, a Democrat, previously announced he would run, and Republican Assemblyman Katcho Achadjian may join the congressional race. Rumors have circulated for more than a year that Capps’ daughter, 42-year-old Laura Capps would run in 2016 to replace her mother.
Laura Capps and her husband recently settled fulltime in Santa Barbara giving her the residency required to run for her mother’s seat. The 24th Congressional District includes all of San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara counties and part of Ventura County.
Fareed received 15.3 percent of the vote in the 2014 primary election, narrowly losing to Republican Chris Mitchum in the competition to challenge Capps. Mitchum narrowly lost to Capps in the general election last November.
Fareed is a rancher, small businessman and a former UCLA running back. He describes himself as a fiscal conservative.
Schneider is currently in her second term as Santa Barbara’s mayor. She previously held a Santa Barbara council seat and worked in human resources management for Planned Parenthood.
Schneider sent out a news release Wednesday that praised Capps as an iconic leader.
Ostrander is an advocate of national campaign finance reform. He organized a citizen’s congress last year that discussed the issue.