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Three Political Newcomers Step Up to Challenge Lois Capps in 23rd District

John Hager, Darrell Stafford and Tom Watson look to unseat the six-term congresswoman

Three candidates are challenging Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, in the Nov. 2 election to represent the 23rd Congressional District, which stretches from Oxnard in Ventura County north to the Monterey County-San Luis Obispo County line.

Historically Democratic, the district has re-elected Capps five times since she won a special election to succeed her late husband, Rep. Walter Capps, who died in office in 1997.

Capps’ three opponents are all newcomers to politics. They include John Hager, an independent who works at his Santa Barbara law firm; Libertarian candidate Darrell Stafford, a retired finance director from Arroyo Grande; and Republican Tom Watson, a South Coast technology entrepreneur who lives in Summerland.

Absentee ballots already have been sent to tens of thousands of voters in Santa Barbara County, and residents have until Oct. 18 to register to vote in this election.

Noozhawk caught up with each of the candidates to discuss their campaigns, their plans and their solutions. Their features and their candidate Q&As are published below. As is Noozhawk’s custom, the interviews are presented in alphabetical order by last name.

» Click here for Lois Capps’ profile, and click here for Capps’ Noozhawk Q&A.

» Click here for John Hager’s profile, and click here for Hager’s Noozhawk Q&A.

» Click here for Darrell Stafford’s profile, and click here for Stafford’s Noozhawk Q&A.

» Click here for Tom Watson’s profile, and click here for Watson’s Noozhawk Q&A.

Noozhawk staff writer Giana Magnoli can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk or @NoozhawkNews. Become a fan of Noozhawk on Facebook.

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