Politics & Government

Nipomo real estate broker challenging Capps for congressional seat

The field of contenders vying to unseat incumbent Rep. Lois Capps is becoming crowded, as another Republican candidate announced her intention to run for the 24th District congressional seat.

Three Republicans and one Democrat have filed statements of candidacy with the Federal Election Commission to challenge Capps, a seven-term Democrat who beat Republican challenger Abel Maldonado in November 2012.

Nipomo resident Alexis Stuart, a real estate broker who has lived in the town 12 years, on Friday announced her intention to run.

“I’m tired of politicians who go to Washington for their own monetary gain and lose sight of us when they pass all these laws,” said Stuart, 60. “I would like to reduce government, reduce spending, and inspire local people to become self-employed small entrepreneurs.”

Stuart owns a small musical instrument store called Music Biz in Nipomo, and founded a nonprofit organization, Credit Power Educational Foundation Inc., to educate people on how to build their credit.

She has also authored several books and e-books, including “Capitalize on Credit Power,” “Home Sweet Loan,” and “Phony President,” which Stuart said is “full of solutions to help the country and try to work together.”

Originally from Owensboro, Ky., Stuart has also worked in private investigation, tenant screening and eviction service, among other businesses.

She’s asking supporters to donate if they’re able, but first to patronize small businesses. For more information, go to www.alexisstuart4congress.com.

The filing deadline is March 12 for California congressional candidates.

So far, the other candidates for the district include Dale Francisco, 60, a Republican serving his second term on the Santa Barbara City Council; Paul Coyne, 50, a Santa Maria resident and the only Democrat so far to challenge Capps; and Justin Fareed, 25, a Republican and a former congressional aide for Rep. Ed Whitefield of Kentucky.

Chris Mitchum, 70, a self-professed Tea Party candidate from Santa Barbara who challenged Capps in 2012 but lost in the primary to Abel Maldonado, told The Tribune in December that he was gearing up to run again. He was not listed as a candidate on the FEC’s website, and could not be reached for further comment Friday.

The 24th District includes Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties and a portion of Ventura County.