Republican Rep. Ed Royce of Fullerton, who has served in the House of Representatives since 1993, announced in January that this term would be his last. The opening in California’s 39th Congressional District, covering parts of Orange, Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties, has been a prime target for a Democratic pickup after Hillary Clinton won the district by 8.5 percentage points in 2016.
Former Royce staffer and Republican state Assemblywoman Young Kim quickly picked up his endorsement. She’ll face Navy veteran Gil Cisneros, a lottery-winner-turned-philanthropist who outlasted a crowded field of Democrats in the primary. His campaign was dogged earlier by a sexual harassment allegation, which the woman later recanted. Cisneros has loaned his campaign $8.8 million since last year, according to campaign finance filings. The candidates are in a dead heat, according to a recent poll by the UC Berkeley Institute of Governmental Studies.
District voters are most concerned about healthcare, the economy, taxes and gun laws, according to the IGS poll.
- Healthcare isn't one of the issues addressed on her campaign website.
- Kim has spoken out against the Affordable Care Act in the past, saying it "gave us nothing but broken promises," according to the Fullerton Observer.
- “We need to work to fix and improve the [Affordable Care Act], not repeal it..., " Cisneros wrote on his website. "We need to work to stabilize insurance markets and have the government directly negotiate drug prices with pharmaceutical companies to bring costs down.”
Economy and Taxes
- Supports keeping taxes low.
- Says she wants to reduce regulations and increase trade to help improve the climate for businesses.
- Has not publicly addressed the impact from the Republican tax plan that capped state and local tax deductions.
- Opposed the 2017 tax bill, calling it a tax cut for billionaires.
- Criticized the tax cuts' cap on state, local and property tax deductions, saying the average homeowner in the 39th District lost thousands in savings.
- Says he wants to reduce taxes for the middle class and eliminate breaks for special interests and corporations that send jobs overseas.
- Has not publicly stated her position on gun control.
- In 2015, when she was an assemblywoman, Kim voted against a bill to expand the prohibition of guns on school and college grounds to include concealed weapons.
- Voted in 2016 against a bill expanding the definition of assault weapons that the state bans.
- The National Rifle Assn. assigned her an "A" rating and the NRA's Political Victory Fund endorsed her, saying she supports right-to-carry laws and opposes bans on semiautomatic weapons and high-capacity magazines.
- Wants to expand background check requirements, ban assault weapons and repeal the Dickey Amendment so the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention can use federal funding to research firearms and gun violence.
- Opposes concealed carry reciprocity.
- Immigrated to the United States from South Korea to attend college, an experience she has invoked when describing her positions.
- Has spoken out against several Trump administration policies, including family separations and curbing immigrants' sponsorship of relatives for visas.
- Supports a path to citizenship for Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients.
- Opposes sanctuary state law, calling it "an affront to law-abiding citizens and a threat to public safety."
- Supports a piece of legislation written by Rep. Lucille Roybal-Allard (D-Downey) that offers Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals recipients a pathway to citizenship.
- Says family separation at the border is "cruel, inhumane, and goes against everything our country should stand for."
- Has pledged he will not vote for any bill that would fund the border wall.
- Wants to provide protection for Temporary Protected Status holders.