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Wright announces run for Congress

Posted: February 29, 2012 2:00 a.m.
Updated: February 29, 2012 2:00 a.m.

The daughter of a former state Republican assemblywoman and state senator is the latest challenger in the 25th Congressional District race.

Catherine Wright, 47, a registered Republican whose mother by the same name represented the Santa Clarita Valley during the ’80s when President Reagan was in the White House, has filed for the June primary and, potentially, the November runoff.

“The lobbyists and special-­interest groups are controlling our country in a lot of ways,” Wright told The Signal on the phone from her Simi Valley home Tuesday.

“I learned a lot from my mother,” she said. “One of the things I learned is that you have to be one of the people.

“I used to ask my mother, ‘Mom, why do you have our phone number listed?’ And she would say, ‘I want my constituents to always be able to pick up the phone and call me,’” she said.

Wright will be challenging incumbent Congressman Howard “Buck” McKeon, R-Santa Clarita, chairman of the House Armed Services Committee, and Democrat Lee Rogers, a San Fernando Valley doctor, in the election.

A divorced single mother who lives in Simi Valley with her daughter and mother, Wright said she has issues with McKeon.

“This whole Countrywide thing, if true, then you’ve got a serious problem there,” she said.

Last month, it was revealed that Congressmen McKeon and Elton Gallegly, R-Simi Valley, each received mortgage loans from the now-defunct Countrywide mortgage company under a VIP loan program.

The House Oversight and Government Reform Committee has been investigating whether members of Congress received discounts from a Countrywide VIP program with some of the favored customers known as “Friends of Angelo” — a reference to former Countrywide Chief Executive Angelo Mozilo.

Wright also has issues, she said, with McKeon’s wife, Patricia, being paid to work on her husband’s campaign.

“All the time my mom ran for office, I would help with the campaign. But my mom would never have paid me for it,” she said.

Patricia McKeon, a candidate in the California 38th Assembly District, is treasurer for her husband’s campaigns.

“(Buck McKeon) is paying his wife,” Wright said. “His wife wins by his winning.”

Wright, who has a Bachelor of Arts degree, is working on her master’s degree and currently taking courses in criminology.

“Santa Clarita is very much like Simi Valley,” she said. “They both have families that want to keep their valley the way it is.”



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