Matthew Piatt, a Beaverton resident with a long background in high tech-sales, has filed to run for the Republican nomination in California’s 20th Congressional District. That seat is currently held by U.S. Rep. Kevin McCarthy, a Republican from Bakersfield, who until recently served as speaker of the House.
Piatt told the Fresno Bee, which first reported his candidacy, that he’s challenging McCarthy because the former speaker cut a deal to avert a government shutdown earlier this year.
“I’m all for a government shutdown because that’s the only way things are going to change,” Piatt, 65, told the Bee. “All we get out of these bipartisan deals are more debt.”
Federal election laws allow congressional candidates to run in districts without living in them, although they must move into the district before being sworn into office. U.S. Rep. Andrea Sallinas (D-Ore.) claimed Oregon’s new 6th Congressional District seat last year despite living slightly outside the district boundaries. It’s far less common for candidates to run in a state where they don’t reside.
Piatt registered his candidacy with the Federal Election Commission in August. On his campaign website, Piatt lays out a staunchly conservative position. “Politically, Matthew is a constitutionalist, a federalist, and unlike Kevin McCarthy, a true fiscal conservative,” he writes. “Matthew is a MAGA Republican!”
A first-time candidate, Piatt will have a steep uphill battle against McCarthy. In addition to name recognition in the district, the former speaker has more than $10 million in his campaign account.