BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KGET) — This June and November, voters in Kern will face a slate of options. 17 News is sitting down with Kern’s candidates so the county can make informed decisions.
We are turning to Kern’s 20th congressional district which stretches from Bakersfield to the Fresno suburb of Clovis. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Bakersfield) is the incumbent in this race. He is facing a slate of challengers in Marisa Wood (D), Jim Macauley (R), James Davis ‘The Deviant’ (R) and Ben Dewell.
A closer look at Jim Macauley
Jim Macauley has never held public office. Nonetheless, the 68-year-old father of three, has a calm confidence he can win Kern’s 20th congressional district.
“I’m not as important as what I’m trying to do for you, which is change your life,” he said. “I want to know why 70% of the population in this area isn’t going to vote for me.”
It’s an area in which he’s only newly familiar. We noticed the mailing address and phone number area code on Macauley’s candidacy paperwork was in Sacramento. When asked if he lived in the district?
“Not yet, I’m in a hotel at the present time,” he said. “I’m still looking for a place.”
It’s legal in California to run in a congressional district you don’t live in. And for Macauley, who considers himself a ‘Teddy Roosevelt conservative and Republican,’ there’s a specific reason he has his sights set on this district.
“It’s one of the few conservative areas where Republicans dominate,” Macauley said.
The San Jose State graduate spent most of his life working in finance in the Silicon Valley.
A true number-cruncher at heart, his reason for running — and his entire campaign platform — centers on one tax plan he created.
The plan aims to reduce the nation’s debt by increasing taxes on the wealthy to fund Social Security and Medicare programs. The first $120,000 of one’s annual income would be tax free.
“I’m talking about putting $8,000 in the investment accounts of people making $55,000 a year for the next 30, 40 years of their working careers,” he said. “Didn’t we just change their lives?”
Macauley pointed to LeBron James as an example of someone who should be taxed more.
“He pays $16,000 in social security taxes. He doesn’t pay 15% of every dollar he makes but you do,” he said.
Macauley said taking the tax burden off the working class would allow them to save and invest in their futures.
“Go become financially independent. Live the American dream,” Macauley said. “Just like the founding fathers originally had in mind.”
Macauley’s tax plan documents
17 News invites everyone running for office to come speak with us about their candidacy.