California Congressional District 27 voter guide: Mike Garcia vs. Christy Smith

Republican Rep. Mike Garcia and Democratic former Assemblywoman Christy Smith.

The race in California’s 27th Congressional District marks another rematch between Republican incumbent Mike Garcia and Democratic former Assemblywoman Christy Smith.

Once solidly Republican, this northern Los Angeles County district has grown more favorable to Democrats, with its population becoming younger and more diverse as L.A. residents moved in seeking affordable housing. Redistricting made it even bluer by excising the conservative Simi Valley.


Who are the candidates?

Garcia, whose parents emigrated from Mexico, was born in the San Fernando Valley and raised in Santa Clarita. After graduating from the U.S. Naval Academy and getting a master’s degree from Georgetown University, Garcia became a Navy fighter pilot and flew more than 30 combat missions in Iraq. After his military career, he worked as an executive at the Raytheon Co. for more than a decade.


Garcia easily won a special election in 2019 over Smith to replace Democratic Rep. Katie Hill, who resigned after nude pictures of her were published without her consent amid allegations of inappropriate relationships with subordinates. In the 2020 general election, Garcia defeated Smith by just 333 votes.

Smith, whose father served in the Army, was born at a military hospital in Germany. Her parents moved back to the United States when she was an infant, and the family eventually settled in the Santa Clarita Valley.

After graduating from UCLA, Smith worked as a policy analyst at the U.S. Department of Education during the Clinton administration. She later served as a Newhall School District board member before being elected to the state Assembly in 2018.

California midterm election: Here’s where Rep. Mike Garcia and challenger Christy Smith stand on economy, abortion, homelessness, the 2020 election.

Oct. 20, 2022


Mike Garcia vs. Christy Smith

Garcia and Smith have highly contrasting political views, particularly about contentious issues like abortion.


Garcia’s congressional record is notably conservative. He is a co-sponsor of the Life at Conception Act, which, as it was written and introduced in the House, would place a nationwide ban on abortion and some forms of birth control.

He voted against the Inflation Reduction Act, a bill passed by Democrats and signed in August by President Biden, which among other things, protects Medicare recipients from high drug prices by phasing in an annual limit for out-of-pocket costs and establishes a $35 cap for a month’s supply of insulin.

Smith has been an outspoken supporter of abortion rights and expanding access to healthcare. While in the Legislature, Smith authored successful bills on college affordability, access to mental healthcare, education reform and compensation for victims of human trafficking.

As of Sept. 30, Smith had raised about $3 million, compared with Garcia’s nearly $6.2 million, according to the most recent fundraising disclosures filed with the Federal Election Commission.


Where is District 27?

The 27th Congressional District includes Lancaster, Palmdale, Santa Clarita and a sliver of the city of Los Angeles, as well as more rural parts of the Antelope Valley and high desert.


Where Garcia and Smith stand on abortion

Before the Supreme Court’s decision in June reversing Roe vs. Wade, the landmark 1973 ruling guaranteeing a national right to abortion, Garcia signed onto an amicus brief asking justices to overturn Roe. The day the decision was announced, Garcia put out a statement saying abortion was now an issue for the states.

“If you are concerned over your abortion rights, call your state assemblyman or senator as the law now falls under the guidance of Sacramento,” he wrote.

After the primary election, he indicated in a statement to The Times that he supported exceptions to abortion bans in cases of rape, incest or threats to the mother’s health — a departure from the Life at Conception bill that he cosponsored.



Smith has been a vocal defender of abortion rights. In a statement to The Times she said that “supporting reproductive rights has been one of the centerpieces” of her political career.

“As a woman who is a high-risk, near-death first pregnancy survivor, and had a complicated decision to carry a second pregnancy to term, I have been a stalwart advocate for greater access to services in my community and will continue to defend a woman’s right to unfettered access to safe, legal abortion services, including now codifying abortion rights into law.”


Where Garcia and Smith stand on Jan. 6 insurrection


Garcia was one of seven California members of Congress who voted to overturn 2020 presidential election results. After a pro-Trump mob attacked the Capitol on Jan. 6, 2021, and paused proceedings in the certification of Biden’s win, Garcia voted against certifying Pennsylvania and Arizona’s electoral votes.


“What is happening in the Capitol today is unacceptable and tragic to our nation’s integrity,” Garcia tweeted the day of the insurrection. “I call for those engaged in storming Congress to immediately cease your operations... This behavior isn’t patriotism. It’s sedition.”

He opposed the impeachment of Trump over his role in the insurrection, as well as the formation of a House committee to investigate the Capitol attack.


In a statement to The Times, Smith criticized Garcia’s vote to block the results of the 2020 presidential election, calling it a “flagrant assault against the rule of law, the peaceful transition of power and ultimately American democracy.”

She said votes against certification were more disturbing after the “revealing” hearings by the House Jan. 6 select committee investigating the insurrection.


Smith has criticized Garcia’s response to the attack, and on Jan. 6, she wrote on Twitter that “today is the direct result of seditious cowards like you promulgating the fallacies promoted by QAnon and extremist groups. You own this mess Mr. 1776. No walking it back now.”


Past coverage

California voters see Jan. 6 as a subplot compared with issues such as abortion and the economy ahead of the 2022 midterm elections.

Sept. 27, 2022

In the two months since the Supreme Court overturned Roe vs. Wade, Republican candidates have been noticeably quiet on the abortion issue.

Aug. 29, 2022

The northern Los Angeles County congressional district is likely to be among the most contested in the midterms.

March 31, 2021

Rep. Mike Garcia (R-Santa Clarita) said the Justice Department was acting “more like a Third Reich” after FBI searched Trump’s Mar-a-Lago estate.

Aug. 22, 2022


Republican Mike Garcia says comparing Biden administration to Third Reich was ‘inexcusable.’

Oct. 7, 2022


How and where to vote

Ballots have been mailed to all 22 million registered voters in the state. Californians can return ballots by mail, drop them at collection boxes or turn them in at voting centers. They can also cast ballots early at voting centers or wait until Nov. 8 to vote at their neighborhood polling places.

Find out how to register, check voter status and vote here:

Here’s how to vote in the California midterm election, how to register, what to do if you didn’t get mail ballot or if you made a mistake on your ballot.


Follow more election coverage

California voters head to the polls Nov. 8 to vote for U.S. senator, governor, lieutenant governor, secretary of state, controller, treasurer, attorney general, superintendent of public instruction, the state Board of Equalization, judges, members of Congress and the state Legislature. Local races in Los Angeles include mayor and county sheriff. There are also seven ballot propositions on the table.