KPBS: Democrat Peters Gets Independent Fletcher’s Endorsement

September 18, 2012

State Assemblyman, Independent Nathan Fletcher with Democratic Congressional candidate, Scott Peters

Above: State Assemblyman, Independent Nathan Fletcher with Democratic Congressional candidate, Scott Peters

Republican Congressman Brian Bilbray and his Democratic challenger, Scott Peters, both need to court independent voters to win the newly redistricted 52nd Congressional seat.

Nathan Fletcher made national headlines when he left the Republican fold to become an independent candidate in the San Diego mayor’s race. Now he’s thrown his endorsement behind Democrat Scott Peters in the critical 52nd race.

“We share an understanding that very few issues are black and white, and that no one has a monopoly on good ideas,” Fletcher said at a news conference at Peters’ campaign headquarters. “What we need now are leaders that have an ability to forge solutions, to bring people together to get things done, and I know in my heart Scott Peters will be that type of leader.”

Peters is positioning himself as a moderate who can represent constituents across the political spectrum. He says he was the first Democrat elected to represent his City Council district, which is part of the newly redrawn 52nd Congressional District.

“This district is a third Republican, a third Democrat, a third independent or decline to state,” Peters said. “It’s not going to be decided by the Republicans or the partisan Democrats, it’s going to be decided by the people who, like most San Diegans, are not the most partisan people – they just expect a government that works.”

The new 52nd replaces the old 50th Congressional District, which had a majority of Republican voters.

Bilbray today called on Peters to publicly apologize for his role in the city of San Diego’s billion dollar pension deficit. Peters has already admitted he regrets his vote to continue underfunding the pension fund, but says he worked to correct the problem, resulting in a city that is now a model for pension reform.

The 52nd is the only congressional district in San Diego that is still competitive and could change hands. Peters and Bilbray are currently running neck and neck.

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