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Decision '92 : SPECIAL VOTERS' GUIDE TO STATE AND LOCAL ELECTIONS : STATE ASSEMBLY DISTRICT : 35th District

October 25, 1992

For the past decade, this seat has been held by Assemblyman Jack O'Connell (D-Carpinteria). Earlier this year, redistricting changed the district's boundaries, dropping Democratic-leaning sections of Oxnard and picking up all of Ventura, the Ojai Valley and more conservative areas of northern Santa Barbara County. Despite Republican gains with new district lines, voter registration still tips slightly in favor of Democrats.

Jack O'Connell

Age: 41

Party: Democratic

Occupation: Assemblyman

Education: Bachelor's degree in history from Cal State Fullerton; secondary teaching credential from Cal State Long Beach.

Background: Carpinteria resident; Assembly speaker pro tem, a leadership position; member of Assembly Education, Insurance and the Ways and Means committees. A native of Long Island, N.Y., O'Connell moved to California in the late 1950s; Oxnard High School teacher for four years.

Issues: O'Connell considers himself a moderate Democrat and says he analyzes each issue on its merits. He supports the death penalty for convicted murderers. He has sought to be in the forefront of educational, economic development, animal protection and environmental issues. He opposes offshore oil drilling. He supports abortion rights.

Lanny Ebenstein

Age: 33

Party: Republican

Occupation: Educator

Education: Bachelor's degrees in political science and economics at UC Santa Barbara; master's studies in economics at UC Santa Barbara; doctorate in political theory at the London School of Economics.

Background: Santa Barbara resident; member of the Santa Barbara Board of Education for two years; lecturer at Antioch University of Santa Barbara; former instructor at Santa Barbara City College; author of four books on political science; born in Princeton, N.J.; moved to Santa Barbara when he was 3. His father, the late Professor William Ebenstein, was a noted political science professor at Princeton University.

Issues: A fiscal conservative, Ebenstein's priorities include reforming the workers' compensation system, enacting welfare reform, supporting term limits and working to reduce the size and scope of government. He supports the death penalty. On abortion, he supports a woman's right to have an abortion during the first three months of pregnancy, but opposes state funding of abortions.

37th Assembly District

For the past decade, this seat has been held by Assemblyman Tom McClintock (R-Thousand Oaks), who has decided to run for Congress. Earlier this year, redrawn boundaries made the district more competitive, but Republican voters still hold a 45%-41% advantage over Democrats. The district now encompasses Moorpark, Camarillo, Oxnard, Port Hueneme and most of Thousand Oaks.

David Harner

Age: 40

Party: Libertarian

Occupation: Clinical laboratory scientist.

Education: Bachelor's degree in biology from Cal State Northridge.

Background: Born in Los Angeles; Newbury Park resident for seven years. He has served as chairman of the Ventura County Libertarian Committee and has been an active party member for 10 years. He ran an unsuccessful campaign for an Assembly seat two years ago.

Issues: Harner believes the government is intrusive and not cost-effective. He believes the private sector could do a better and more efficient job at providing most government services. He wants to phase out most government regulations on businesses. To ensure that taxpayer money is spent directly in the classroom, Harner wants individuals and corporations to pay for the education of students and receive tax credits in return.

Roz McGrath

Age: 45

Party: Democrat

Occupation: Farm manager and schoolteacher.

Education: Bachelor's degree in fine arts from Dominican College in San Rafael. Master's degree in early childhood education from San Francisco State University.

Background: Born in Oxnard, she moved to Camarillo at the age of 9 and spent eight years attending colleges in Northern California. McGrath now lives on the historic family farm and has long been involved in efforts to preserve farmland and farm-related jobs. She is a member of the Ventura County Farm Bureau, the Ag-Land Trust Advisory Committee and the Planned Parenthood Advisory Council.

Issues: McGrath seeks to overhaul the workers' compensation laws, and supports preserving farmland and jobs by easing land use regulations and other red tape. She favors allocating more state dollars to schools, and proposes generating revenue by taxing foreign-owned properties at a higher rate. She supports a statewide drug resistance program in schools and wants to provide more services to victims of violent crimes.

Nao Takasugi

Age: 70

Party: Republican

Occupation: Mayor of Oxnard.

Education: Master's degree in business administration from Wharton School of Business at the University of Pennsylvania. Bachelor's degree in accounting from Temple University.

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