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Candidates Talk Politics at Rio Americano Breakfast

Ami Bera, others attend Civitas group's 'Pancakes and Politics.'

Candidates in political races representing the Carmichael area shared advice with students and their parents at Rio Americano High School on Saturday morning.

"Our legacy is how the next generation does," said , who is running for U.S. Congress against U.S. Rep. Dan Lungren. "I'm running because I do believe in a better tomorrow for America."

Bera and six other candidates or representatives addressed students and voters during an annual candidates forum breakfast known as "Pancakes and Politics" put on by Rio's Civitas group.

Voters were able to ask candidates questions and Bera was the most popular, speaking on everything from health care to the Middle East.

"Health care... should put patients first before profit," he said. "This is going to be an incredibly important election.

After Ted Wolter, the chief of staff for Sacramento County Supervisor Roberta MacGlashan spoke, , a Rio Americano teacher and candidate supporting the Occupy movement, spoke about why he is running to unseat MacGlashan.

"Over the past eight years, sales taxes are up and county services are down and people are frustrated and angry that our board of supervisors are in the pockets of the special interests," Blenner said. "I want to provide for jobs and I feel that government can be the spark for job creation if this region's economy is going to improve."

Jeff Kravitz, another Occupy candidate who lives in Carmichael, will run against the current incumbent , to represent District 3. The district also includes Fair Oaks, Arden-Arcade, Cordova, North Highlands and Foothill Farms.

"Democracy is not a spectator sport," said Kravitz, who has taught constitutional law at the Lorenzo Patino School of Law in Sacramento and has a daughter who attended El Camino High School. "Supervisors have run unopposed with no debate...I'm going to bring my experience to the board of supervisors."

, a Carmichael native and alum, is one of three candidates running for the new state Assembly District 8, which includes Carmichael.

"I'm a candidate who has bipartisan support," Tateishi said. "We have to make sure California is a viable state for children to grow up, find a job and raise their families."

The Civitas breakfast is an annual fundraiser and is organized by freshman and sophomore students, said Linda Reed, the Civitas coordinator at Rio.

"Civitas is about giving children the tools and desire to give back through service to the community from a young age," said Rio senior Or Taylor. "Meeting candidates is great because we can see how our votes and volunteering affects the election cycle and the issues."

Ken Cooley of Rancho Cordova is also running for state Assembly District 8.

"People feel like we're suffering from (political) gridlock," Cooley said. "Part of seeing economic success hinges on a legislature that works."

A representative for Elizabeth Emken, who is one of 24 candidates running against U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein also spoke Saturday.

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