Opponents take aim at Schiff

Josh Kleinbaum

For 90 minutes Friday, three congressional hopefuls took aim at Adam

Schiff in the first of three debates between the four candidates for

the 29th District seat in the House of Representatives, painting the

incumbent as a career politician who supports war and helps expand

the scope of government.

Schiff did not take the bait, focusing on his record and his plans

for the future instead of giving direct answers to accusations from

his challengers. He portrayed himself as a moderate Democrat willing

to work with Republicans to help his district and the nation.

"I'm attacked from the left, I'm attacked from the right, and in

the form of [Libertarian candidate Ted] Brown, I'm attacked from the

right and the left," Schiff said. "I clearly took the right seat at

this table -- in the middle."

The four candidates -- Schiff, Republican Harry Scolinos, Philip

Koebel of the Green Party and Brown -- outlined different paths for

the future of both the country and the district.

The challengers, especially Scolinos and Koebel, spent most of the

time hammering Schiff.

Scolinos kept returning to one theme, that Congress needs

represen- tatives who are concerned for the district, not their

political future. He never called Schiff a career politician, but the

implication was clear.

"Problems face the country, problems face the district, and I

don't see anyone doing anything about it," Scolinos said. "We need

somebody in Washington willing to take risks."

Koebel portrayed Schiff as a Republican in disguise, pointing to

his support of the wars in Iraq, Afghanistan and the global war on

terror, as well as the USA Patriot Act.

"The Republican Party is not supporting their own candidate,"

Koebel said. "They don't need to. They have their candidate that's

working for them in Adam Schiff."

Brown used the debate to push the Libertarian agenda. He focused

on reducing the scope of government and plugged other Libertarian


Schiff focused on his three-pronged plan that he calls Country,

Community, Kids. He discussed legislation he helped write in the

state Senate and the House of Representatives, including his work on

campaign finance reform and reducing nuclear proliferation.

"He's running on his record," Koebel said. "Examine his record.

Look at it closely. Your representative has so much say in your life


Copyright © 2019, Burbank Leader
EDITION: California | U.S. & World