Wednesday, April 24

Candidate breakdown for the Nov. 8 election

The Daily Bruin breaks down the background and policy positions for candidates running for office. The following candidates hope to represent UCLA at some level of government, whether it be in Washington, D.C. or Sacramento.


Hillary Clinton, Democratic

  • Former secretary of state from 2009 to 2013
  • Former United States senator, New York from 2001 to 2009
  • Former first lady of the US from 1993 to 2001

If elected, Clinton said she would work to provide tax relief for working-class families, expand background checks for gun sales and work to close the pay gap between women and men. Clinton would also work to make community college tuition-free and help those with low socio-economic status graduate without student debt.

Donald Trump, Republican

  • President, chairman of Trump Organization, a business specializing in real estate and entertainment, from 1971 to the present
  • No political experience prior to presidential run

If elected, Trump said he would protect middle- and lower-class Americans and jobs by cutting taxes and enforcing stricter border controls, including a physical wall on the southern border with Mexico. Trump also said he would temporarily prevent immigration from violent nations with a history of terrorism. He would increase military spending and the number of active soldiers, and work with the United States’ Arab allies to fight the Islamic State.

Gary Johnson, Libertarian

  • Former Republican governor, New Mexico from 1995 to 2003
  • Libertarian Party presidential nominee in 2012

If elected, Johnson said he would use his veto power to minimize congressional spending and balance the national budget. Johnson also plans to introduce US term limits on elected representatives to prevent policymakers from focusing only on reelection when implementing policy. Johnson wants to create a system that utilizes work visas, background checks and incentives for non-citizens to pay taxes to help immigrants assimilate into American society.

Jill Stein, Green

  • Former physician
  • Green Party presidential nominee in 2012
  • Former gubernatorial candidate in Massachusetts in 2002 and 2010

If elected, Stein said she would introduce the “Green New Deal” to shift from a fossil fuel economy to an environmentally sustainable economy. She also said she aims to guarantee human rights to food, water, housing, utilities and a job that provides a livable wage. Stein also said she plans to create a stable path to citizenship for immigrants and stop the deportation of law-abiding undocumented workers.


Kamala Harris, Democratic

Harris is the current California attorney general. During her tenure, she focused on fighting transnational gangs and human trafficking, and reducing recidivism. She also helped reduce elementary school truancy and established the Division of Recidivism Reduction and Re-entry in order to fight crime and protect public safety.

If elected, Harris said she would work to pass comprehensive immigration reform. She also said she wants to use federal resources to improve the justice system, end human trafficking and fight criminal organizations. Harris also said she supports free community college and lower tuition at public and private universities.

Loretta Sanchez, Democratic

Sanchez has been a United States representative since 1997, representing Orange County. She has served as co-chair of the Immigration Task Force, was a Congressional Hispanic Caucus member and holds senior positions on the House Armed Services and Homeland Security Committees.

If elected, Sanchez said she would work to initiate a path to citizenship that includes temporary worker programs, humane border control measures and a system that ensures fair treatment of workers. Sanchez also said she supports a secondary education plan that includes affordable community college at $5 a unit and the expansion of community college to include four-year workforce programs.

House of Representatives, California 33rd

Ted Lieu, Democratic

Lieu is the incumbent representative for the district encompassing UCLA. He was an active officer in the U.S. Air Force and serves as a colonel in the reserves, as well as a former State senator. Lieu introduced the Climate Solutions Act to Congress, which would have applied a proposed California renewable energy model at the national level. He also fought for California state tax reform that protected small businesses and serves as co-chair of the LGBT Equality Caucus.

If re-elected, Lieu said he would work to create a national budget policy that raises the wages of the middle class, invests in education and infrastructure and protects federal entitlements. He also said he wants to apply California’s experience with energy reform to national policy in order to encourage environmental improvements on a global scale.

Kenneth Wright, Republican

Wright is a practicing physician and pediatric eye surgeon running on a progressive Republican platform. Wright has not previously served in public office.

If elected, Wright said he wants to prevent the mass poverty in inner cities by introducing educational, vocational training and counseling improvements in poor communities. Wright said he would work to repeal the Affordable Care Act and allow patients the freedom to choose their medical insurance.

State Assembly, 54th District

Sebastian Ridley-Thomas, Democratic

Ridley-Thomas is the incumbent assembly member for the district that includes UCLA. Prior to running for state assembly, Ridley-Thomas worked as the public policy director for Curren De Mille Price, who represented District 26 from 2009 to 2013.

While in office, Ridley-Thomas sponsored bills that would expand services to underserved people, including dental, health care and mental health services. He also supported bills to improve infrastructure and invest in public transportation in Los Angeles.

Glen Ratcliff, Republican

Ratcliff is running against Ridley-Thomas in a rematch of the 2014 election, which Ridley-Thomas won. Ratcliff has served as ex officio for California’s 54th Assembly District Central Committee and president to the Californian Republican Assembly in 2014.

If elected, Ratcliff said he would work to reduce taxes and lift regulations, including repealing the state fuel tax, the California state inheritance/estate tax, and eliminating highway tolls. He also hopes to increase employment rates by reducing the minimum wage and employee benefit requirements.

Contributing reports by Alyssa Hsu and Shweta Chawla, Daily Bruin contributors.


Click the banner to read more election endorsements and analysis.

Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterEmail this to someoneShare on Google+Share on Reddit
Editor in chief

Preal is the editor in chief of The Bruin. He was previously the assistant news editor for the city and crime beat and a news reporter for the city and crime beat.

Comments are supposed to create a forum for thoughtful, respectful community discussion. Please be nice. View our full comments policy here.