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Democrat, Libertarian Vie to Unseat Republican Dreier

October 01, 2004|By Jake Armstrong

Congressman David Dreier will face Democratic challenger Cynthia Matthews and Libertarian candidate Randall Weissbuch in the upcoming general election.

In the run-up to the Nov. 2 showdown, Dreier and Matthews have picked up several endorsements in and out of the 26th District.

Locally, Dreier, R-Glendora, has received the support of a number of La CaƱada Flintridge elected officials, as well as from leaders of the city's Republican groups. An environmental engineer from La Verne, Matthews is backed by the state attorney general, area and state labor unions and Democratic organizations. Weissbuch, an Arcadia physician who is out of town on business, could not be reached for comment.

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Mayor Laura Olhasso and City Councilmen Steve Del Guercio, David Spence and Greg Brown have endorsed Dreier, chairman of the House Rules Committee.

"I am honored to enjoy the broad and deep support of citizens throughout La Canada Flintridge," Dreier said in a prepared statement. Votes are scheduled in the House this week, and Dreier could not be reached for direct comment.

"I'm supporting him because he continues to work on issues of national concern-our economy, our foreign policy-and he is a major champion of regional transportation issues," Del Guercio said.

As the city continues work on the feasibility of installing soundwalls along the Foothill (210) Freeway, known as the Noise Barrier Summary Scope Report, Dreier is searching for federal funds to assist the city in its decades-long quest for soundwalls, Spence and DelGuercio said.

California Attorney General Bill Lockyer, a Democrat, has surveyed the candidates and endorsed Matthews because he supports her stance on after-school programs, said spokesman Nathan Barankin.

"He's partial to Democrats, and he likes her position on after-school programs, which is something he cares a great deal about," Barankin said.

Matthews said she favors creation of new after-school programs from grade school to high school that would give students "a bit of involvement so they have productive things to do."

She also said she supports complimentary educational programs, such as second language and computer skills classes.

Of her endorsements, Matthews said, "I'm very proud of each and every endorsement I get and I take them seriously."

Spence said he likes the fact that Dreier's work in the House often transcends political party loyalties.

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