HH: This is a first ever in my 16 years of a nationally-syndicated radio show. I’ve never done this before. I have a Democrat on whom I’m endorsing for office in a general election campaign. The Honorable Loretta Sanchez, Congresswoman extraordinaire from the Orange County area in which I live when I’m on the West Coast, Chapman proud Panther, Chapman graduate, is running for the United States Senate against another Democrat, and I’ve known Loretta Sanchez forever. And she’s going to make a great Senator. Congresswoman Sanchez, welcome to the program this morning.
LS: Good morning. It’s a pleasure to be on.
HH: I want people to know, Loretta, I’ve seen you every year at the Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast in Anaheim for like 20 years. Would you tell them your story so that people understand why I would be endorsing a Democrat for Senate?
LS: Well, of course. First of all, my parents are immigrants from Mexico, came to California with nothing, very little education, worked in factories, had seven children, moved to Anaheim, educated all of their children, and you know, I’m a Head Start child, so it means I began with very little, as my whole family did. And my parents were the only parents in the history of these United States to send two daughters to the United States Congress. They believe, and I believe that with hard work and responsibility, and a little bit of luck and a lot of God in your life that you can make anything of yourself in these United States. And that’s what we stand for. And I’ve been in the Congress now for 20 years. I’m actually a Chapman graduate in economics. I have an MBA, and I worked for 12 years in the financial services sector before I ran for Congress. I have sat on the Armed Services and Homeland Security Committee in the Congress, and I really do the real tough decision making about, you know, trying to let my colleagues know when to use the military and when not to, and that it’s a limited resource, and that we really need to think about how we are viewed in the world and where we go and what we get involved with. And that’s pretty much my story.
HH: Loretta Sanchez is on the Committee on Armed Services. She’s on the committee on Oversight Investigation, a subcommittee on Strategic Forces, so she actually knows about the Ohio Class submarine. She’s on the subcommittee on emerging threats and capabilities. She’s on the committee on Homeland Security, on the Border and Maritime Security, on Counterterrorism Intelligence, serious person. She would be the first Latina elected to the United States Senator. Now in California’s open primary, two Democrats emerged as the top two vote getters. Loretta Sanchez, you need Republican votes to win, and that’s why I’m glad to endorse you. I think are by far the more moderate of the, I mean, you and I are not going to agree a lot, but occasionally, we’re going to agree on Armed Services and some Defense appropriation issues. I’m not going to agree with your opponent ever. How are you going to put together a coalition to win the Golden State?
LS: Well, as you know, twice as many people, at least, will show up in the general election as did the primary. It’s really a matter of getting the resources to let people know my background, because there’s a very big difference between my opponent and myself. I have been working in the Congress, I have been working with Republicans and Democrats. Every time that somebody points, you know, some reporters says something, well, who does really work in the Congress with the other side? Who knows how to work with people? Usually, my name is the first one that comes up with two or three other Republicans that I work on with transportation, with water, on all these Armed Services, national defense, the real strategic issues of our country. So I have that experience. I’ve cast votes over 20 years. I’m a big civil libertarian. I mean, I don’t really want the government necessarily in our lives. I am a counterterrorism expert, and I’m not afraid to talk about that issue and really set people straight on it. And a lot of my colleagues look to me for some of the answers. I know a lot of the world leaders. I’ve, you know, gone and talked to al-Sisi in Egypt. I can pick up the phone to Netanyahu. And sometimes, I’m across the table from these guys, and they’re pounding their fists on the table, and I’m giving it back to them also. But in the end, we agree that we need to work together on whatever the issue is. I’m a blue dog Democrat. That means that I care about what government programs we have, and more particularly, how we pay for them. And you know, I don’t like the smoke and mirrors of we can have everything. So I think there’s just a big difference between my opponent and myself. And I’m going to go up and down the state campaigning, as I did in the primary. The Democratic Party has endorsed her. They, you know, most of the party infrastructure is in San Francisco. She’s from the north, and I’m definitely a product of Southern California. And I just believe that if enough people know, and they see the differences between the two of us, that people will be choosing Loretta Sanchez for the Senate.
HH: This is not close, and it’s also a test of the vaunted whether or not the politics of the center can actually work. You’re center-left, and you and I are not going to vote for the same person for president. I’m not here to deceive anyone. You are a Democrat, www.loretta.org, but I believe Republicans ought to support you, because when there will be bipartisan issues in the United State Senate, you will not be on the far left edge. But boy, are they trying to edge you out, Loretta. That is, the Democrats play hardball with their own people when they have someone who’s been picked by the elites in Sacramento and D.C. to win. Are you able to raise the resources to run in the Golden State? And do Latinos rally to your cause, because you would be the first Latina in the United States Senate?
LS: Well, I believe that Latinos, many of them, and we saw this in the primary, the ones that did show up, that I won about 65%, about two out of every three Latinos did vote for me. They’re not going to rally to my cause simply because I’m going to be the first Latina ever in the United States Senate. I think they’re going to rally to me because they realize that I started with nothing, that I worked very hard, that I had people help me, that the community worked to educate me, and it strengthens their belief that this country is a land of opportunity. I believe they’re going to vote for me because I come from a military family. My husband is a retired United States Army infantry colonel. My youngest son just became commissioned as second lieutenant. That’s three generations of Army officers. So they understand that I know, and that I just don’t send our military willy-nilly someplace. I think they’re going to vote for me because I am an independent thinker, and that’s one of the things that the establishment of the Democratic Party up in San Francisco doesn’t like about me, is that I don’t necessarily vote party line, that I actually look at issue, that I actually work across the aisle, that I have been elected ten times in Republican Orange County, and that I have needed those Republican votes in order to be elected. You know, as people in my district will tell you, I’m very accessible They can come, they can talk to me, and bring new issues to me, or maybe even change my mind on an issue or two. So that’s the reason why I think Latinos or anybody else would, if they know, if I have the resources, if I get the word out, if people really look at the difference between somebody who’s never cast a vote, my opponent has never cast a vote in the United States Congress or any other legislature. You know, she can say whatever she wants, but when the going gets tough, and the pressure is one, I have stood up and have taken the votes according to how I believe would be best for the people of America and the people that I represent.
HH: I’m talking with Congresswomen Loretta Sanchez, who’s been a friend of mine for a long time. And she is a Chapman graduate, and I have known her forever. I was with Curt Pringle yesterday, the former Republican Speaker of the California Assembly, another Loretta Sanchez fan, and told him that Congresswoman Sanchez would be on today. He’s all in for Loretta, and www.loretta.org, most Republicans I know are all in for her, because she’s center-left. She’ll at least take the meeting, right? We’ll be able to get in and say we’d like you to consider this position, and I’ve always found that business in Southern California thinks they get a fair hearing from you, Loretta. They may not get what they want. They may not near the right answer at the end, but you talk to them, which is different from a lot of Democrats in D.C. these days.
LS: Well, listen, I don’t believe that I have all the answers. Some of the best things that I’ve worked on in the Congress have walked right through the front door, and great ideas, different ways of looking at things. And if you can convince me to be your champion for the issue that you have, or what you want to change, then you know, I’m like a dog on a bone. I’m going to go and fight. I’m going to convince my colleagues. I’m going to help. And I think Orange County knows that.
HH: And so will the rest of the state. Follow here on Twitter @Loretta2016. Her website is www.loretta.org. I appeared with her sister, Linda, at AIPAC. She is a strong supporter of the state of Israel. Loretta Sanchez, good luck, Congresswoman, in your California Senate campaign. Come back early and often.
End of interview.