Democrats pack Simi Valley town hall, but Georgia race also on their minds

Wednesday, April 19, 2017
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Democrats packed a town hall held by Republican Rep. Steve Knight in Simi Valley, but were also closely watching a Georgia election seen as a referendum on President Donald Trump.

SIMI VALLEY, Calif. (KABC) -- Democratic activists lined up Tuesday night to pack a Simi Valley town hall held by Republican Rep. Steve Knight - but for many it was a congressional race in Georgia that was really on their minds.

Democrats nationwide are hoping 30-year-old Jon Ossoff can shock the political world by winning a Georgia seat not held by a Democrat since 1979.

He is running against eight Republicans. The seat was previously held by Tom Price, who was named by President Donald Trump as health and human services secretary.

Any candidate who takes 50 percent of the vote Tuesday wins the race outright. Otherwise, there will be a runoff election between the top-two finishers in June.

The race is turning into a referendum on Trump's presidency and a forerunner of Democratic efforts to retake the House in 2018. They need 24 seats to regain control.

Trump himself has been active on Twitter trying to take down Ossoff. He also recorded a robocall warning voters that the Democrat would "raise your taxes, destroy your healthcare and flood our country with illegal immigrants."

In Southern California, Democrats also have Knight in their crosshairs.

Earlier this year, he held a heated town hall in Palmdale. Now, many Democrats have organized to ask him questions about health care and other topics at his Simi Valley forum.

"I want him to be our knight," said Sue Baker of Simi Valley. "I want him to say no to Trump's collusion."