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POLL: District 30 Candidates Debated; Who Gets Your Support for Congress?

Democrats Rep. Howard Berman and Rep. Brad Sherman, and Republicans Mark Reed and Susan Shelley faced off at the Valley Performing Arts Center on live video.

The debate Monday night between candidates for the 30th Congressional District seat was sponsored by the Associated Students of California State University, Northridge. (If the video window does not appear above, refresh the page.)

The participating candidates were Democrats Rep. Howard Berman and Rep. Brad Sherman; and Republicans Mark Reed and Susan Shelley.

Berman and Sherman are incumbents. They are running against each other because of redistricting, which put them in the same district. The primary election is June 5. Under the new "Top Two Open Primary Act," registered voters can pick a candidate from either party. The top two vote-getters will run against each other in the final, November election.

The panel of moderators ws made up of CSUN alumni, faculty and students. The lead moderater was KFI radio host Bill Handel, a CSUN alumnus; with Michael Sidley, an adjunct faculty member at CSUN and a member of the board of directors of Direct Link Insurance Services; and student Ross Perry, a political science major and a philosophy minor from Fresno, CA.

For more on the candidates and moderators, go to CSUN's "Big Politics" website.

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Marianne Love May 01, 2012 at 04:20 AM
I watched the debate through Northridge-Chatsworth.Patch.com tonight. Thank you Patch for doing that; otherwise, I probably won't have seen it and since this is the Congressional candidates last debate it was important for me to hear what they had to say from their own mouths and nowhere else. That being said, I am a registered Democrat and while I appreciate Sherman and Berman's loooooooooong stint in politics, it's time for them to go. Sure they have accomplished much, but they ARE a part of the gridlock in the federal government. We need new blood and I'm torn between Reed and Shelley. I heard Reed speak before and he is very knowledgable in my opinion. I have never heard Shelley and I was quite impressed. I'll be persuing more information about her that's for sure.
Susan Abato May 01, 2012 at 07:27 PM
Susan Shelley deserves your vote. Susan is a graduate of CSUN. while the other Repunblican did not even complete Pierce College. It is time that we in the new 30th CD send a woman who is a fiscal conservative and social moderate to represent us. Susan Abato
Denise Roberson May 01, 2012 at 10:35 PM
Mark Reed is the best candidate with a chance to beat Sherman or Berman. Marianne is right----we need some new people in congress! Vote for Mark Reed!
Guy Fox May 01, 2012 at 11:04 PM
Mark Reed, in my opinion, won the debate hands down. Sherman and Berman both acted like spoiled children that demonstrated no real life experience and wisdom, the kind you would expect from someone representing you in Congress. Shelly, was there just to feed her ego and sell her book. She had been a life-long pro-abortion, gay marriage Democrat until she needed to get some attention from the media by switching parties. Mark Reed's fine point was that after 30 years of Sherman and Berman, the West San Fernando Valley has become equivalent to a third world banana republic with a rapidly shrinking middle class with high unemployment, high home foreclosure, high inflation, high crime and growing poverty. Sherman, Berman and Shelly were whining all night with no substance, no solutions and no apparent knowledge of the real problems facing the Nation. Mark Reed blew them out of the water with very strong answers... he sounded like the only adult in the room. If you don't believe me then watch the video.
Jay Stern May 02, 2012 at 12:02 AM
Mark Reed was the clear winner of the debate. He was focused, knowledgeable and clear in his answers. Even Bill Handel respected his answers, and Handel rarely respects anyone. Susan Shelly also did well. She is brilliant -- almost too much so. Sometimes Susan tends to speak over the heads of her listeners. While I think that Mark will win this election, and rightfully oust both Berman and Sherman, I hope that Ms. Shelly continues in politics. Both Mark and Susan are passionate in their commitment to conservative values, even though their expression of that passion is radically opposite. Brad Sherman lived up to his reputation of being shrill and self-serving. When he mentioned the Valley Industrial and Commerce Association -- VICA -- as supporting him, he failed to acknowledge how he funnels money to them. And their office is across the street from his, I understand! As for Howard Berman, he is mired in politics that did not work then, are not working now, and are unlikely to work in the future. His idea of "compromise" just leads the US further and further away from the honorable path set by our forefathers. The above not withstanding, there are so many Democrats in the area that I suspect the general election will match Mark Reed against either Susan Shelly or Howard Berman, and I think Mark will prevail. I think -- and I hope -- that Brad Sherman goes back to another line of work.
Helen S. Murphy May 02, 2012 at 12:33 AM
I just finished watching the debate on Patch. Thank you for bringing it to us. It was informative. We are fortunate to have well qualified people running for Congress. I will be back in their Congressional district again so will be able to vote for one of them.
Wendy Albright May 02, 2012 at 07:44 AM
Ms. Abato, what a profound statement coming from someone who can't spell "Republican," must have something to do with all of your edjumacation. Seems to me proving that Shelley can be institutionalized and/or indoctrinated in the public school system, especially one in California, doesn't necessarily make Shelley the best candidate for any office. Mr. Reed getting out into the work force and realizing his time could be better served with gaining experience in the real world, not to mention his own ability to think and create wealth and prosperity provides credibility to being the right "Man" for the job as office holder and leader. As for the comment about a fiscal conservative and social moderate, we like to refer to those as RINO's so feel free to shorten your speech in the future and just call it like Shelley is. Or better yet, just have her go back to being a registered Democrat and try to fight the limp Berman and the stooge Sherman; she might actually get somewhere. What???? you say war chest...Now I think I understand.
Lorraine May 03, 2012 at 04:04 AM
This video does not show the unrest the Berman intern instigated, as directed by said campaign office, solely for the purpose of rev'in up the students before they went inside. The problem with being fiscal conservative and socially moderate is it EXACTLY why we are fiscally broke...the socially moderate programs instigated by legislators who felt it was gov't business to regulate from womb to tomb. Remember the gov't who qualifies life in the womb will eventually also prematurely escort the elderly to the tomb. A Vote for Mark Reed in June will eliminate TWO incumbents - Berman & Sherman know this and this is why they consistently contest Reed and not the other candidates.
Carla Endow May 03, 2012 at 04:09 AM
Mark Reed is an independent thinker and not a go along to get along puppet. I have seen Mark speak and debate many times and he speaks from the heart. His conservative message has been consistent since the first time I heard him speak over two years ago. When you have passionate conservative values and principles, speaking from the heart comes easy. We do need a fresh face in congress that can articulate and sponsor legislation that offers real solutions to the real problems we face. Having listened to Mark and learning where he stands on the issues, I am confident he's my choice and will give Berman and Sherman a challenge they haven't had to face in years. Out with the old and in with Mark! Lastly, I like that I can post my own comments on Mark's Facebook page. Susan Shelly doesn't seem to want to hear from potential voters. Her page is a controlled environment but she knows how to push her book.
J.L. Capps May 03, 2012 at 09:24 PM
Mark Reed is the only real choice when it is concerning constituents receiving representation here in the West San Fernando Valley. Washington for to long now has been sending their delegates to US!!! Berman & Sherman, both quintessential party line voting Washington bureaucrats! Democrats with an agenda thats not benefiting Valley residents one bit, only their own political careers! Now I think its time we sent one of US to them! Mark Reed is a product of this great region and has actually spent the majority of his life's journey right here with us, working and living as one of US... How can we complain if we continue to make the same mistakes, lets do the smart thing this time and VOTE THEM BOTH OUT! Lets make a decision that is beneficial to the Valley, to our lives & children's lives, lets make Mr. Mark Reed OUR new Congressman!
Guy Fox May 04, 2012 at 12:35 AM
Just found this link at PopModal. KFI Radio host Bill Handel declared Congressional candidate Mark Reed victor at the CSUN debate that he moderated. http://www.popmodal.com/video/13631
Myrna Davis May 04, 2012 at 02:45 AM
After watching the debate, it is clear that the only candidate who understands the Valley's needs is Mark Reed. The two incumbents, Berman and Sherman, seem to know how to spend more money, which the country does not have. And where they spend it has nothing to do with creating wealth, jobs, growth or prosperity. Adding a lane to a freeway does not bring new job growth to the district, only temporary work for construction (union) workers. Can you say payback? Berman is no better. Congress needs fresh faces and new ideas. Mark Reed is sincere and cares about the people in the 30th District. He has lived here and worked his businesses here. Susan Shelley is not a true conservative and may know all the right things to say, but I don't think she truly believes them. So, in June and November, I intend to Mark and Reed my ballot.
Mark Reed May 04, 2012 at 07:41 PM
BILL HANDEL DEBATE MODERATOR AND KFI RADIO HOST DECLARES MARK REED VICTOR OF DEBATE!!!!! http://www.popmodal.com/video/13631/KMODERATORFI-Radio-host-Bill-Handel-declared-Congressional-candidate-Mark-Reed-victor-at-the-CSUN-debate-that-he-moderated
Lorraine May 05, 2012 at 05:37 PM
Marianne - I see in your bio you are from Porter Ranch. Some parts of Porter Ranch are actually in the NEW 25th district. Go to the registrar of voter website to confirm your address - look at the bottom "new" district to see the number: http://lavote.net/OnlineDistrictmapApp/Default.cfm
Vince Gilmore May 05, 2012 at 08:46 PM
Before you make your decision, look into Vince Gilmore. If you want to end the wars, abolish the federal income tax, abolish the Federal Reserve, repeal the Patriot Act, reinstate the Glass-Steagall Act, if you stand for individual liberty, individual soveriegnty, state soveriegnty and national soveriegnty, then Vince Gilmore should be your choice. Pierce College held a debate on May 1st. Howard Berman was too cowardly to show up and Sherman sent one of his minions to try and debate. Mark Reed, Susuan Shelley, Navraj Singh, Mike Powelson and Vince Gilmore all found the time to show up. I urge people to take a look at that debate before you make your final decision. Keep a careful eye on Vince Gilmore, the only true Constitutionalist in this race. Vince Gilmore 2012!
Michael McCue May 09, 2012 at 10:05 AM
This debate was so rigged it stank. Candidates like Republican, Navraj Singh, Democrat, Vince Gilmore and Green Party candidate, Michael Powelson were excluded, even though they are qualified and on the ballot. The moderator was a joke...a jackass actually and I didn't like it when he used Shelley's talking points to introduce Mark Reed in a lame attempt to embarass him right out fo the gate. CSUN should be ashamed that this travesty of a debate ever took place. Pierce College held a debate for the candidates the very next night and ALL candidates were included. The moderators were fair and did't use the violent, bigoted rhetoric of the Tea Party like Bill Handel used. Handel is a disgrace to the human race and should never be allowed to "moderate" anything ever again! He's a total jerk!
bohunkus May 11, 2012 at 03:43 PM
Will someone please explain why Congressman Waxman is not running. This is supposed to be his district.

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