On the Record: Congressional candidate Evan Low

San José Spotlight asked readers what they want to know about the candidates running for Silicon Valley’s competitive Congressional District 16 race. We received more than 100 questions from readers for the candidates and narrowed it down to eight questions that capture a range of critical national issues — from immigration to foreign policy and partisan gridlock in Washington.

Read all the candidates’ answers.

Here are Evan Low’s full, unedited answers:

How will you work “across the aisle” and overcome the challenges facing our political discourse?

As a sitting state Assemblymember, I am the only candidate in this race with recent state legislative experience working with both Democrats and Republicans to get things done. During my time in Sacramento, I’ve prioritized sitting down and getting to know members of both parties in order to help overcome our political differences. It’s working: I’ve earned bipartisan support for my legislation to help prevent hate crimes and enshrine marriage equality in our California constitution, among other bills. I’m ready to take my experience building legislative coalitions to Washington.

What will you do if Trump is re-elected fairly and then he violates the constitution again through his decisions and actions? 

If I am elected to Congress, I will support impeachment proceedings once again and work with my colleagues in the United States Senate to remove him from office.

However, I do not believe that Trump is even eligible to be elected given his violation of the Constitution. Last year, I organized a group of 11 of my legislative colleagues to write a letter to the Attorney General of California asking that he seek the opinion of the courts as to whether or not Donald Trump is eligible to run for public office again. It was our opinion he violated the 14th Amendment of the US Constitution which clearly states you cannot have taken an oath to support the Constitution and then participate in an insurrection against our country as we all witnessed him do on January 6, 2021. I am hopeful that the United States Supreme Court will ultimately uphold the rule of law and our Constitution by removing Donald Trump’s eligibility to appear on the ballot, as I opined in a Mercury News opinion last September. I will always prioritize protecting our democracy from right-wing attacks in Congress.

Do you believe in, and will you publicly support, a two nation resolution to Israel and Palestine?

All peaceful people, including Israelis and Palestinians, deserve to realize peace, prosperity and national sovereignty. At the conclusion of the war with Hamas, I am hopeful for – and fully support – Israeli and Palestinian leadership convening to negotiate a two-state solution where both the state of Israel and a state of Palestine are fully realized that can live side-by-side in peace and in democracy. Without a two-state solution, it is not likely that either Israelis or Palestinians will realize the peace both peoples deserve.

What will you do to reduce the federal deficit?

To start, I support repealing Trump’s tax bill that widened our federal deficit by giving more tax breaks to special interests at the same time as it increased taxes for California homeowners. I also support President Biden’s plan to help close the deficit by increasing resources for enforcement to fight tax fraud and would like to continue working within Congress to close unnecessary tax loopholes and exemptions. I’m also committed to monitoring Congressional spending to prevent waste.

How do you plan to help our region, state, and country to kick the reliance on fossil fuels as we make our way to a carbon-free energy future?

Climate change significantly threatens our planet, impacting weather patterns, sea levels, and ecosystems. I have always advocated for a shift towards renewable energy sources like solar, wind, and hydropower to reduce reliance on fossil fuels and decrease carbon emissions. In the State Assembly, I supported the climate package which appropriated $54 billion dollars over 6 years for fighting climate change, along with other bills including SB 261 which requires large companies in California to submit annual reports on their climate-related financial risk and AB 1082 and 1083 to expand electric vehicle charging infrastructure.

Since Silicon Valley is the technological epicenter, it is imperative that we harness its potential to combat climate change. AI can analyze vast amounts of data, such as weather patterns, vegetation health, and historical fire data, to predict the risk of wildfires, monitor air quality in real-time, detect pollution sources, and develop strategies to reduce emissions. This can lead to improved air quality and public health. I also agree with the The Biden Administration and our very own California Air Resources Board (CARB) that carbon removal technologies will have to be part of the solution.

What would you do to remedy the root causes of homelessness, such as providing better mental health and addiction services?

I would advocate for and support legislation that allocates more funding towards mental health and addiction services at the federal level and work to expand Medicaid coverage to include comprehensive mental health and addiction treatment options. Additionally, I support increased funding for housing programs to ensure individuals have stable living situations while they receive treatment. The federal government can also do more to work with and fund local governments and nonprofits to create initiatives that provide job training and employment opportunities for individuals experiencing homelessness, addressing economic instability as a root cause. Finally, I will champion policies that prioritize prevention and early intervention strategies to address mental health and addiction issues before they escalate into homelessness.

Will you support fully funding BART to San Jose and the High Speed Rail projects?

Yes, we must continue to fund public transportation including BART and High Speed Rail to relieve traffic, make our transportation system more climate-friendly, and promote economic development and better access to jobs and affordably-priced homes. However, I support additional audits to ensure we are constructing both projects as affordably as possible while still maintaining quality and strong labor standards.

What are your solutions to the border crisis and do you believe we should have an open border for any and all to be allowed into the country?

I support comprehensive immigration reform to address the root causes of the border crisis. This includes investing in diplomatic solutions to address issues in migrants’ home countries, enhancing border security through smart technology and personnel training, streamlining the asylum process to ensure timely and fair adjudication of claims, and codifying legal status including a path to citizenship for DREAMERS. I support humane treatment of migrants and families, including providing adequate resources for processing facilities and ensuring access to legal counsel. I’m open to additional physical security measures as part of a compromise to help achieve broader reform. However, I do not advocate for a complete open border policy. Instead, I believe in maintaining border integrity while providing ample opportunities for legal immigration and asylum that uphold our values of compassion and fairness in immigration policy.

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