Even though many club members live in Congressional District 50 and will not be able to vote for anyone running to unseat Congressman Darrell Issa, Mike Levin stopped by the monthly club meeting to spread the word about who he is and what he stands for as he seeks to win the district come November, 2018.
Mike went to Stanford University, then received his law degree from Duke School of Law, focused on environmental law and energy regulation issues. He hails from Orange County where he was the Executive Director of the Orange County Democratic Party in 2006 and 2007. “This experience,” he says, “taught me how to persuade Republicans.”
He serves on the Board of the Center for Sustainable Energy in San Diego and is passionate about clean energy. “We need to get the U.S. to 100% renewable energy by 2050” he explained. He was very content doing this work until Trump started seriously considering a run for President. He decided, with great insistence from his wife, not to run in 2014 because they had just had a baby and with two small children timing was not good. Today, that has changed.
He believes this moment defines us and whomever steps up to confront what we face today. “What will history say,” he asked? He recounted his family’s story, with Jewish grandparents who emigrated from Eastern Europe and faced the harsh realities of anti-semitism in our own New York City. His grandfather started a business that he named “Dean Interiors”, after James Dean, because he knew in the environment of the day he could not call it “Levin Interiors”. “Someone who fought and served couldn’t use their own name” for a business he explained. “I won’t ever let that happen again.” His mother’s side hails from Mexico. His mom was the first female toy designer for Mattel Toys.
Watching the environment under President Trump grow darker by the day he announced his run for Congress on March 8, 2017. He is endorsed by numerous Democrats, including Adam Schiff, and the National Organization for Women. He has raised almost $1 million in less than 7 months. He accepts no corporate PAC money, and all donations have come from over 9,000 small donors across the United States. The key issues he intends to focus on are Medicare for All, a living wage, and education.
“Anger and frustration isn’t enough to win” he explained, “but our thinking behind that is we can win, but we all have to come together.” Although he certainly hopes to win the primary he indicated that he will support whomever wins to ensure that Darrell Issa is sent home next November.