Is there a TEA Party fly in the Republican ointment in the 13th Congressional District, or vice versa?
Most of the local “TEA Party” conservatives had seemed to gravitate toward “Coach” Luis Garcia, 49, of Fremont, an information technology worker at Cisco Systems, in last month’s GOP primary as their man to challenge Rep. Pete Stark in November.
But business executive Forest Baker, 62, won the GOP primary with almost 55 percent of the vote to Garcia’s 45 percent. Baker as of last October was registered to vote at an address in Mountain View, which lies in Rep. Anna Eshoo’s 14th Congressional District; Congressional candidates are not, however, required to live within the bounds of the district in which they seek election, only within the same state.
Now information is circulating on at least one local conservative mailing list urging people to take a look at Chris Pareja, who apparently is working to get on November’s ballot as an independent. From the message I received:
He is an excellent conservative candidate – the only conservative in the race. Forest Baker is the Republican candidate, but is a RINO who believes the Constitution is a living document and does not need to be strictly adhered to. He has no chance to beat Stark, but Pareja can get votes from independents and Democrats, as well as Republicans if he can get enough signatures on his petition to get on the ballot.
Pareja, 38, of Hayward, runs the Pleasanton-based B2B Power Exchange, a business networking outfit. On his website, he describes himself as a “Tea Party Independent” galvanized into political activity by last year’s health-care reform debate.
“I am sick and tired of the ‘Democrat’ versus ‘Republican’ bickering. In fact, I find that when I remove the labels, Americans agree on issues 70% of the time!” he wrote. “Democrats, Independents and Republicans have all told me they feel America has been hijacked by career politicians that believe they can dictate what is best for the people. But every day, citizens – many of whom have never watched politics very closely – are starting to wake up to what is happening in Washington DC (and Sacramento), and they want to put their country back on track.”