RIVERSIDE (CBSLA.com) — Candidates for California’s newly created 41st Congressional District are hitting the phones hard to get out the vote a week before Election Day.
Democrat Mark Takano and Republican John Tavaglione have been battling for the congressional seat that covers Riverside, Moreno Valley, Jurupa Valley, and Perris.
Takano is a life-long Riverside resident who has spent the last 20 years as an English teacher and trustee at Riverside Community College.
“Talking to voters, talking to volunteers making these phone calls, I believe the voters are breaking my way,” said Takano.
Tavaglione has spent the last 18 years as a county supervisor and is a 4th generation Riverside resident.
“Even when I go and talk to my friends who are Democrats and are undecided or knock on doors and they’re Democrats and undecideds…the feeling is wonderful,” said Tavaglione.
Both candidates said the area’s 12 percent unemployment rate is a major issue.
“I think what we need to do is get rid of the overburdensome regulation that is causing small business to struggle,” said Tavaglione.
Takano said, “This past Congress attempted to repeal the Affordable Healthcare Act 30 times. They didn’t pass once in the bill to bring jobs in the area.”
Political pundits have called the hotly contested congressional race a toss-up.
“It’s going to be a close race, but I believe the people of the district are ready for a change,” Takano said.
Tavaglione said, “I have a reputation that I’m a doer, and I know how to get things done and how to bring people together. That has provided a tremendous amount of encouragement.”
The candidates have pledged that no matter who is elected president, they’re willing to work across the aisle in Washington.