Now that Congresswoman Katie Hill (D-CA) has resigned from her seat after a House Ethics investigation was launched into her alleged affair with a congressional staffer, all eyes are on California's 25th Congressional District, which includes parts of Los Angeles and Ventura Counties.
Republican Mike Garcia launched his campaign in April before Hill's ethics were called into question because he was worried about the future of the country and Hill's voting pattern.
"I was seeing, at the national level, things starting to happen, which had happened in California 10 to 15 years ago," Garcia told Townhall. "Katie Hill was really the catalyst. I did a lot of research into her, and I was convinced she was a faker from day one. What I saw was all that money being spent on her campaign, and it was coming from those representing socialist values and not necessarily what our district represents."
Throughout the entire 2018 election, Hill was touted as a moderate Democrat, even though she was receiving donations from progressive groups and PACs like NARAL Pro-Choice PAC, Emily's List, New Democrat Coalition PAC and the Everytown for Gun Safety Action Fund.
Once it came time to vote on various bills, it was evident that she was anything but moderate.
"What I didn't anticipate was just how far left she would vote," Garcia explained. "Bottom line is I don’t want what’s happened in California to happen at the national level."
Specifically, Garcia wants President Donald Trump's tax cuts preserved, especially for Californians who face higher-than-normal state taxes.
"We're way overtaxed already. I want to make Trump's tax cuts permanent and renegotiate Californians' tax rates," Garcia told Townhall. "I'm pro-business, pro-big business and pro-small business. I believe we need to remove the state and local tax deduction limit of $10,000 that was imposed."
Garcia believes Americans want qualified leaders to "do things for the right reasons, not because they’ve been paid." Every election cycle, he was tired of going to the polls and saying, "I wish there was a human being I didn't feel dirty voting for." When he researched and talked with others in the district about a potential candidate to run against Hill in 2020, it became evident there wasn't anyone who he believed in that had the possibility of winning.
That's when he decided he was the best candidate to take on Hill.
Garcia's nearly 20 years of service as an F/A-18 pilot in the United States Navy gave him insight into America's national security needs. During the first six months of Operation Iraqi Freedom in 2003, he oversaw combat operations and participated in over 30 combat sorties in the skies above Baghdad, Fallujah and Tikrit. When he was honorably discharged, Garcia had accrued over 1,400 hours of flight time.
After retiring, Garcia joined Raytheon, a major U.S. defense contractor, where he's been an executive for the last 10 years.
Because of his military experience and insight, Garcia's number one legislative priority is national security. Specifically, he wants to see America invest in military infrastructure and take care of its veterans.
"Our equipment is wearing out because of the wars we've been in since 9/11. We need to hold the Department of Defense budget for at least five to seven years," he said, a clear reference to Democrats' calls to shrink the DOD budget.
Garcia said although he doesn't always agree with President Trump's style of getting things done, he likes the results, and "the country needs results."
"The results he’s getting are absolutely tremendous for this country. I think he is an 800 horsepower engine. Right now, he’s trying to drive this [country] with a 100 horsepower engine, especially with the House," Garcia explained. "Trump's hit resistance because of the freshmen class. The House of Representatives should be a wingman to the president, not the advisory."
"I like what he’s done for the economy, unemployment and jobs in general," the candidate said. "I like what he’s doing on the international front."
Now that Katie Hill has resigned from Congress, Garcia said his campaign has seen an uptick in donations and interest. Although his campaign is seeing a surge in national attention, he said his team plans to continue the grassroots efforts it has utilized all along.
"We're hitting every club meeting, every one-on-one meeting and utilizing volunteers," he explained. "We've started door-knocking and canvassing neighborhoods."