Two Democrats compete in primary against Rep. Raúl Grijalva
CREATED Aug. 24, 2012
Reporter: Kevin Keen
TUCSON (KGUN9-TV) - Rep. Raúl Grijalva is up for re-election and two other Democrats want to take his seat in Washington. The newly-drawn Congressional District 3 stretches from parts of Tucson to Yuma. Three Democrats and two Republicans are in the running. Tuesday, voters will decide who makes it to November.
In this story, 9 On Your Side asks the Democratic challengers why they should go to Congress. Read the Republicans' responses in a separate story.
Here's who's in the running: five-term congressman Raúl Grijalva, OB-GYN Dr. Manny Arreguin and former state Senator Amanda Aguirre.
9 On Your Side’s first question for the candidates: What do you think is the most important issue facing Congressional District 3? All three answered job creation.
What do they see as Congress' role?
“We have to create an environment where business can thrive, and that will create jobs,” Aguirre said. “In the last year, I doubled the number of employees in my business--went from 30 to more than 70 employees--so I know what it takes to create jobs. We have to invest.”
“You can't just wait for trickle down,” Grijalva answered. “We can't just wait for those job creators that have kept the money and not invested it. Government has to play a role. That's why I support the president's American Jobs Act--five million jobs over three years.”
“I think we need a new culture change in Washington, D.C.,” Arreguin said. “A culture change that brings in people that are more interested in finding solutions.”
9 On You Side asked what role, if any, Congress should play in reducing gun violence.
“I think it'd be more interested in resolving and probably bringing to the forefront some immediate things that we can do, and mental health I think is one of those things we can address,” Arreguin said.
“I think the mental health issue is a big issue,” Aguirre said, adding she believes in perserving the Second Amendment. “Most of our violent attacks that we've seen lately is because an individual has a mental health issue so we have to do something about that.”
“Protect the Second Amendment for those good people that have weapons, use them for protection, use them for recreation. I agree with that,” Grijalva said. “But I also think that there's a point where guns play a role in the public safety and in the violence of this country.”
What would each candidate like voters to know before Tuesday?
“Good, bad or indifferent, I've been consistent,” Grijalva said. “I approach the issues that I deal with with a great deal of sincerity.”
“As a physician, I know that I'm about learning,” Arreguin said. “I might not exactly know all the answers or how to resolve the issues that go on in Washington, D.C., but I’m absolutely a student of learning.”
“Come out and vote. It's important, Aguirre said. “You have a voice to select. Now you have a choice in the primary Democratic ticket to chose a different Democrat.”
The primary is Tuesday.