By The Signal Editorial Board
If you’re old enough, perhaps you remember the TV commercial: Four authentic-looking cowboys, sitting around a campfire, getting ready for some tasty campout vittles. One cowpoke is playing the harmonica, while another dumps the last bit of Pace Picante Sauce onto his plate.
The jar is empty.
“Floyd, more Pace Picante Sauce!” he hollers across the campfire.
“There you go!” Floyd replies, tossing him a jar of red liquid.
But it’s not Pace Picante Sauce. It’s an imposter. The country boy points out to Floyd that Pace is made in San Antonio, by folks who know what picante sauce should taste like.
Another cowboy grabs the “fake picante sauce” jar and says, “This stuff’s made in New York City!”
Floyd’s three campmates exclaim, “New York City?!?”
The scene cuts to the next day, when Floyd is making the return trip from their campout, tied to the trunk of his buddies’ car.
That, in a nutshell, is what’s been happening with the financing of the Katie Hill for Congress campaign. Hill’s campaign rhetoric is built on the premise that it’s an up-from-the-bootstraps grass-roots campaign, and to some extent, judging from the local support she’s receiving, there’s a level of truth to that.
But the financing? While the Hill campaign has spent the past several months claiming to eschew “big money” in favor of individual donors, it’s actually all about big money — big, out-of-town money. It turns out that the multimillion-dollar support for Katie Hill was not built in Santa Clarita, or Palmdale, or Lancaster, or any other community within the 25th Congressional District.
The big money supporting Katie Hill for Congress isn’t even from San Antonio.
A giant chunk of it is from — you guessed it — New York City.
New York City?!?
Yes, New York City.
For starters, that’s where Michael Bloomberg is from. You remember Bloomberg, the billionaire former mayor of New York City?
New York City?!?
Bloomberg, through his political action committee called Independence USA, is spending more than $4.5 million on advertising to help elect Hill for Congress.
Why is a New York City billionaire trying to tell Santa Claritans who they should send to Congress?
It does not stop there. Hill has received $7.3 million in direct contributions — nearly triple what incumbent Rep. Steve Knight has raised, and that’s not counting all the outside PAC money she indirectly received from sources like Bloomberg’s PAC. Giant chunks of it came from outside the 25th District.
To be fair, Knight has also taken contributions from outside the district — and his opponents got into quite a dither over whether he declined to accept several thousand dollars from the NRA, a drop in the bucket compared to the bigger money flowing into both campaigns.
Based on the records of their respective campaigns’ finances, Knight’s “outside” contributions pale in comparison to the massive influx of money backing Hill from places outside the 25th Congressional District.
Who will she represent if elected? Will it be the people from her district or the interests of those whose millions will have swept her into Congress?
For them, the interests of the 25th District are irrelevant. For them, it’s all about flipping the House majority to the Democratic Party, harnessing hatred of President Trump.
Whatever you may think of the president, who you choose to represent the 25th District should be a reflection of which candidate is best equipped to serve the interests of your community, while also addressing the important broader issues facing the nation.
We believe the interests of the Santa Clarita Valley are best served by Steve Knight, who has built a track record on local issues such as protecting our environment by fighting against the proposed CEMEX gravel mine, working to obtain federal funding for Interstate 5 improvements and leading the drive to get the St. Francis Dam disaster site the federal historic landmark recognition that its victims deserve.
And, as we’ve previously editorialized, we agree with Knight’s views on the broader issues, like border security, taxes and health care.
Don’t fall for the fake picante sauce. On Nov. 6, we urge you to vote for Steve Knight. And while we won’t advocate strapping Bloomberg to the trunk of a car on his way out of town, we will advocate sending a message that he can better spend his money where it belongs: In New York City.