The following interview is one of three profiles on the two candidates and one incumbent running for California's 24th Congressional District. A list of the same questions were posed to each candidate.
Democratic Congressman Salud Carbajal said is running for a second term in the U.S. House because he said there's still a lot of work that needs to be done.
"We need to continue to bring down our healthcare costs, prescription drug costs. We need to address climate change, prohibit future offshore oil drilling off our coast," Carbajal told reporter Beth Farnsworth.
The congressman said he is also committed to creating economic opportunities for the central coast and considers all the above-mentioned among the major issues confronting voters in 2020. He said he is proud of the impact he's making in our nation's capitol.
"I am glad to have voted on legislation that has passed in the House, to bring down prescription drug costs. Also, addressing climate change and ensuring that we move towards renewable energy and prohibit future offshore oil drilling off our coast."
Carbajal said he looks to renewable energy as the future for job creation and the means for saving the environment. He believes climate change is an imminent threat to our way of life.
"We need to look no further than our own community, to consider the fires, the droughts, the impacts that we're experiencing. And without addressing climate change, aggressively, this is only going to get worse."
The career politician said he is aggressively focused on agriculture, calling it the "number one industry" on the Central Coast.
"I'm proud to have voted for the USMCA (United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement) which is NAFTA2.0 that really provides for more opportunities for our agriculture community."
The congressman does not agree with the federal government's stance on most immigration issues and said President Trump "reversed course" on the promise to protect DREAMers. He wants to see a legal path for migrant agricultural workers and no wall.
"We also need to make sure that we are securing our border, but smartly, not with a wall, but with technology and boots on the ground."
The Marine veteran voted to impeach President Trump and said the president broke the law and should not serve a second term.
"This president has really only worked to divide us."
However, Carbajal does support the federal government's efforts to ease the nation's homeless crisis.
"It actually includes our entire community, community of faith, our private sector, all of us working together."
He also wants to see people working together to improve healthcare by bringing down premium prescription drug costs.
"And I'm open to almost anything that gets us there."
Congressman Carbajal, who splits his time between his office on Capitol Hill and his family home in Santa Barbara, responded to criticism for missing a debate.
"I am committed to debating. Now I am committed to debating in the future. So, it's just a matter of making sure our schedules allow for that."
The congressman ended the discussion by pointing out that he and his Republican opponent are polar opposites when it comes to key issues including the Affordable Care Act, a woman's right to choose, and offshore drilling.
"It couldn't be a clearer contrast coming up in this election. But I will continue to work."
Congressman Carbajal's current term end the beginning of 2021.
For more information about Congressman Carbajal, click the following link: https://carbajal.house.gov/
For more information on the other candidates in the 24th Congressional District Race, click here.
You can watch Congressman Carbajal's entire interview with reporter Bath Farnsworth here: