Rep. Maxine Waters’ time as a career politician is coming to an end.
On Tuesday, Omar Navarro — a young, pro-Trump Hispanic-American — formally declared that he’s challenging the long-time California Democrat in the 2018 race.
“When I realized Maxine Waters was my representative, I said, ‘Wow, this person is representing me? How are people electing this person year after year?’” Navarro said. “I started doing research and looking into her background and I did not see one candidate running a legitimate campaign against her in 27 years.”
Navarro said he is tired of seeing “liberal politicians that are running their own districts, their own counties down to the ground. Enough is enough.” He said he’s running in 2018 because “We have to do something about it and I’m not going to let our country fall apart.”
Navarro was born in Inglewood, California and spent a significant portion of his life in Hawthorne and Torrance. He said that played a significant role in his decision to run in the 43rd district against Waters, because he knows the region and its people. The 43rd District includes parts of South Central L.A., Westchester, Playa Del Rey, Torrance, Gardena, Hawthorne, Inglewood and Lawndale.
He resigned from his position serving on the traffic commission in Torrance two weeks ago. This is not his first time running against Waters: Navarro ran against the seasoned congresswoman in 2016.
He had only raised about $3,000 for his initial run against Waters, compared to the $650,000 she spent against him. “But I still got 25 percent of the vote, which was quite humbling to even receive that type of vote with the amount of money I spent.” He added, “I learned a lot from that election,” and said, “It was an honor for me to be on the ballot with [Donald] Trump too.”
Approximately three weeks after the November 2016 elections, Navarro said he was able to gather information and numbers about how well he could potentially do in another political run against Waters. He was optimistic and began doing videos on Periscope. He went out and talked to people at rallies and city council protests. “I started getting a good reception from people who were interacting with me. And then I decided, I’m going to do this. I’m going to run again. I had a good feeling,” He said. “I just felt it.”
“I want to run. I want to make a difference in my community. I want to impact my community. I’m tired of all of these politicians not doing anything for us. They’re not changing anything. I want to be that person.”
He has out-raised Waters on individual contributions, according to the most recent filings. “I raised close to $31,000 and she raised about $26,000,” Navarro said. The next filing will be in September.
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