Rep. Scott Peters, D-San Diego, will face his first reelection test today as voters go to the polls around San Diego County.
The freshman from La Jolla appears to be the only member of the five-person San Diego congressional delegation who will face a stiff reelection challenge.
He'll go up against former Councilman and onetime San Diego mayoral candidate Carl DeMaio, businessman Kirk Jorgensen and surgeon Dr. Fred Simon Jr. in his bid to return to Washington, D.C., from the state's 52nd Congressional District. All three challengers are Republicans.
Peters, who ousted former GOP Rep. Brian Bilbray in a close race two years ago, is part of a group called No Labels that's dedicated to a bipartisan approach to solving problems.
"I came to Congress to create policies that deliver results for my district and for the country and the way to do this is by working across the aisle and collaborating with others who have diverse political views," Peters said. "No one person or party can fix our nation's toughest challenges. That's why I'm fully committed to a bipartisan approach -- it's the only way to make a real difference for all Americans."
DeMaio, who the Washington Post recently included in a list of the top 40 U.S. leaders under 40 years old, has taken on the persona of a "new generation Republican" who is willing to fight for reforms.
He has offered up plans for ending congressional perks, creating jobs and reforming the Department of Veterans Affairs, which faces allegations that former armed forces members have died while awaiting care.
"San Diego is home to some of the largest military installations in the world, and home to scores of former, current, and future service members," DeMaio said. "It's imperative that swift and immediate action be taken to ensure their health and well-being."
Jorgensen is an ex-Marine captain who specialized in intelligence during Operation Iraqi Freedom and in anti-terrorist missions, and returned home for defense consulting work. The Black Mountain Ranch resident said he will "confront tough issues" like tax reform, the national debt and immigration.
Simon, a surgeon at Scripps Memorial Hospital Encinitas, has focused on health-care reform, and says medical professionals should be given incentives to perform quality work.
The 61-year-old Coronado resident said tax reform and removing barriers to entrepreneurs will help lead to job growth.
In other races:
- Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Vista is being challenged in the 49th Congressional District by Democrats Noboru Isagawa and Dave Peiser
- Rep. Duncan D. Hunter, R-Alpine, will run again in the 50th Congressional District against Democrat James Kimber and Libertarian Michael Benoit
- freshman Rep. Juan Vargas, D-San Diego, faces Republican Stephen Meade in the 51st Congressional District
- Rep. Susan Davis, D-San Diego, goes up against Republicans Larry Wilske, Joel Marchese, Wayne True, John Edwards and Jim Stieringer; plus Christina Bobb and John Campbell, who did not state their party preference.
The top two vote-getters will advance to the general election in November.
In the state Legislature, several incumbents are facing token opposition -- Assembly members Rocky Chavez, a Republican, and Democrats Lorena Gonzalez and Shirley Weber are unopposed.
—City News Service