In a sign that Democrats are making a serious effort to win back control of the House, President Obama has cut a television ad supporting Democratic candidate Bryan Caforio, who is challenging freshman Rep. Steve Knight in a toss-up North Los Angeles County race.
Knight (R-Lancaster) has been called California's "most vulnerable" incumbent this cycle as the 25th Congressional District he represents has lost a Republican advantage among registered voters and as the share of Latino voters there has grown to more than 1 in 5 voters.
The Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee named Knight a top target this election season and, along with Caforio, has spent heavily to hit the conservative congressman with attack ads highlighting his strong antiabortion stance.
Now Caforio has a rare testimonial from Obama, who narrowly lost the district in 2012.
“I’m with Bryan because he’ll take on the big banks, just like he did as a consumer attorney,” Obama says in the ad. “He’ll fight Republican efforts to privatize Social Security, he'll keep Planned Parenthood funded and protect women’s health, and pass equal pay for equal work.”
The endorsement comes as the race to represent the large district spanning Simi Valley, Santa Clarita and the Antelope Valley has grown more expensive and punchy.
Knight was among the Republicans who recently said they would no longer support Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump. Caforio had put the pressure on Knight to disavow Trump previously, notably after Trump attacked the family of a Muslim American soldier killed in Iraq.
About $2 million in outside money has come in to influence the race on both sides.
The National Republican Congressional Committee has attacked Caforio for having moved into the suburban district only shortly before announcing his candidacy in December. The ad also highlights a Times story that looked at Caforio’s six-year tenure at the Century City law firm Susman Godfrey.