Republican congressional candidate Tom Watson brought his campaign to the Santa Barbara Republican Club on Saturday in Goleta.

“This year the American people will choose liberty and fiscal sanity over the destructive path being laid out by a Congress that openly defies the expressed will of its people,” he said.

“Enough is enough.”

With a little over two weeks to go before the Nov. 2. election, Watson says is making four or five appearances a day. He has been actively campaigning since February and says campaigning is not for sissies.

Watson is the son of a Navy rear admiral and is himself a retired Navy aviator. He flew F-14 Tomcats off of two carriers and also earned two masters’ degrees. He has since started a small company from which he is now on a leave of absence.

While admitting that he is not a politician, Watson does understand business and economics enough to be concerned that the current Congress is borrowing 41 cents of every dollar the United States is spending. Social Security would be declared bankrupt based on traditional accounting. He cited figures of 20 percent to 40 percent of college-educated youths being unemployed.

Watson lamented that his opponent, Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, votes consistently with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., and Rep. Henry Waxman, D-Calif.

Commenting on the race thus far, Watson said he believes he has 40 percent of the vote, from those who believe that the federal debt and unemployment are too high, and that Capps has 40 percent of the vote, from those who believe the government should pay for social causes. The remaining 20 percent is up for grabs, he said. Also competing for those votes are independent candidate John Hager and Libertarian Darrell Stafford.

Watson said he is disappointed that the only debate held thus far was a one-hour function and Stafford did not show. Two more debates are scheduled for Oct. 23 and Oct. 28.

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» John Hager Touts Independence, and a Laser Focus on Debt, Congressional Priorities

» Noozhawk Q&A with John Hager

» Darrell Stafford Assails Out-of-Touch Congress, Runaway Deficit

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» Tom Watson Says Government Spending Is Nation’s Biggest Concern, Threat

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— Bob Zeman is a local freelance writer.