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District 2 Supervisor Race Comes Down To Performance Record

San Diego supervisorial candidates Joel Anderson (left) and Steve Vaus (right...

Credit: Campaign Photos

Above: San Diego supervisorial candidates Joel Anderson (left) and Steve Vaus (right) in these undated campaign photos.

The results of the election will undoubtedly bring vast changes to the region’s leadership, and after almost three decades, East County’s District 2 on the San Diego County Board of Supervisors will finally see a change in authority.

Former State Senator Joel Anderson rose to the lead in the primary election with almost 75 hundred more votes than his opponent, Poway Mayor Steve Vaus. They’re both Republicans, running in a historically red district. What sets them apart, they say, is their performance record as public servants.

Listen to this story by Maya Trabulsi.

“I think the distinctions between myself and my opponent could be summed up with three things: track record, temperament and trust,” said Vaus. “As far as track record, I'm the only candidate with executive experience running a jurisdiction and I think I have been pretty successful.”

Vaus recounted the shooting at the Chabad of Poway. “Temperament: 523 days ago, this city faced an unthinkable tragedy. Yet at times like that, you can't fake compassion. We mourned together, walked through a dark valley, and I was there with my community every step of the way,” Vaus said. “And trust: I show up for work, I keep my word and I'm always there for my community.”

Reported by Maya Trabulsi

Vaus points to his county-wide bipartisan endorsements, including from outgoing Supervisor Dianne Jacob, who after 28 years on the board of supervisors has termed out. Vaus’s priorities include public safety, infrastructure, and protecting and expanding open space. He says mental health and homelessness are particularly important to him after witnessing his sister’s struggle with schizophrenia and homelessness. “A tent or a tarp should never be a home. And for us to turn a corner on that, we've got to treat the totality of the person,” said Vaus.

A map showing District 2 on the San Diego County Board of Supervisors.

Anderson touts his experience as a member of the minority party in Sacramento. “You know, in the time I had in the legislature, I did over four hundred and fifty bills across party lines, either joined or co-authored by Democrat colleagues. If you added all the Republicans I served with collectively, I did more bills with Democrats than all of them combined.”

Anderson is officially endorsed by the San Diego County Republican Party. His priorities include road improvements, career opportunities, and housing attainability. “When you think about an entry-level home being over $450,000, what you're saying is this next generation doesn't deserve the same things that we had,” said Anderson. “Yes, we struggled to buy our house. We stretched. We had a lot of spaghetti to make it happen, but there was a path and we knew we could get it done. I'm not sure a young person right now, [who] has a good job, has any chance whatsoever.”

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Aired: October 6, 2020 | Transcript

Election 2020 news coverage

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Photo of Maya Trabulsi

Maya Trabulsi
KPBS Evening Edition Anchor

opening quote marksclosing quote marksI'm the news anchor for Evening Edition, which airs live at 5 p.m. on weekdays. I also produce stories about our community, from stories that are obscure in nature to breaking news.

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