U.S. Representative Zoe Lofgren (D) has served in Congress since 1994. She knows as well as anyone what a polarized political environment has done to the Legislative Branch and she empathizes with voters and their frustration.When asked how she has gained and sustained support among her constituents, especially in the current political environment, she responded that she “shares the same disappointment with constituents.” Lofgren explained that in a district of over 750,000 people, one has to understand that not everyone is going to agree. Her success comes from looking at the role of government the same way her district's voters do: wanting a government that has a positive role.
In a district that strongly favors one major party over the other, it is important to assure voters not affiliated with the party that they will be adequately represented.
“It is important to listen,” the 10-term congresswoman said.
Lofgren added that this is especially important for voters who do not always see eye-to-eye on issues to make sure they are heard. Because no one knows everything, listening to the reasoning of opposing sides and addressing their concerns can produce practical solutions that go beyond talking points.
This is Lofgren’s second time running under California’s nonpartisan, top-two open primary, where all voters and candidates, regardless of party affiliation, participate on a single ballot. The top two vote-getters then advance to the general election.
When asked whether or not she supports the top-two primary, Lofgren responded:
“The jury is still out. In theory, it was made to produce a more moderate candidate. In the current state, there is a lot of money being spent on it. I would like to see how it all plays out.”
During the last two election cycles, her opponent has been Robert Murray. Little information has been found or reported on his campaign or his political views
Murray ran in 2012 as a Republican, but is running in 2014 as a Democrat. He received the same percentage of votes in June's primary as he did in 2012. On both occasions, the 23 percent was enough to get him to the general election against Lofgren.
Lofgren said she has not met or heard anything from Murray or his campaign and has no comment or knowledge on the candidate.
Editor's note: The author of this article attempted to reach out to Robert Murray's campaign but was unable to secure an interview.