CA-42: Robert Garcia (D)
Brought to America by his mother, Robert Garcia immigrated to the United States when he was just 5 years old. He says becoming a citizen is his proudest moment, and it’s the reason he went into public service.
Garcia is most widely known for his tenure as Long Beach mayor and his leadership of the city during the worst of the pandemic. Long Beach was the first city in California to vaccinate educators — allowing Long Beach Unified to reopen schools before most other districts — and the first city to vaccinate 99% of its senior population. The New York Times profiled the city’s vaccination efforts, calling it “a national model.”
As mayor, Garcia oversaw a period of economic growth and expansion of opportunity for city residents. He worked to launch programs like tuition-free community college, a universal basic income pilot and a pandemic recovery package to ensure every Long Beach resident could share in the city’s success.
He is married to Matthew Mendez Garcia, a professor of political science at California State University, Long Beach. Upon his election, Robert became the first immigrant and LGBTQ mayor in the city’s history, and he would be the first LGBTQ immigrant to serve in U.S. Congress.
The biographical information above was sourced from the candidate’s campaign website, see links above for more information.