Eshoo attempts to retain House seat
Friday, October 16, 1998
last updated April 6, 2001 12:00 PM
Rep. Anna Eshoo says she can sum up the goal of her legislative agenda in three words.
"Education, education, education," she said.
Eshoo has more than a civic interest in higher education in the region. She received her bachelor's degree from Cañada College in Redwood City. Her daughter Kathy attended graduate school at Stanford, and her son Paul went to UC-Berkeley.
"We always have a lot of rivalry," Eshoo said.
With less than three weeks before the Nov. 3 general election, Eshoo finds herself in a familiar position. Comfortably ahead of her nearest opponent, Chris Haugen, the three-term Democrat representing Stanford in the 14th Congressional District continues to legislate today while looking toward the future.
"The plan for the future is to push ahead with the kind of work I've done in the Congress," she said. "To be effective, to be fearless, to be unafraid, and to really speak with passion on behalf of the people of the 14th District."
Stanford senior LaNitra Walker, vice-chair of Stanford Democrats, met Eshoo recently at a voter registration event in Palo Alto.
"She's definitely trying to make sure that once you get into college you don't come out of it $100,000 in debt," Walker said. "She's interested in what college kids have to say and what kinds of issues and needs they have. I'd say that's one of the benefits of having her as our congresswoman."
Eshoo said the support of Stanford community has been vital to all of her campaigns and she has worked to respond to the needs of the University.
"I'm exceedingly proud to represent Stanford University and to have it as part of one of the jewels in the crown of my congressional district," Eshoo said.
"For the students, I hope that my record is one that is inspiring to them. It's the young people I pay most of my attention to. So the decisions I make are really the long-term decisions - what's going to speak best to the next generation in the country."
Eshoo has a long political track record in the Bay Area, beginning in 1980 when she was elected the first woman chair of the San Mateo County Democratic Committee. In 1992, Eshoo won the first of her three House terms.
She currently serves on the House Commerce Committee, which oversees technology, health and the environment - all vital to the local economy, she noted. In 1993, Eshoo was instrumental in securing funding for the Stanford Linear Accelerator Center.
Ben Brink, Class of '74, who challenged Eshoo for her congressional seat in 1994 and 1996, said that it would take a particularly strong campaign to defeat Eshoo this year, adding that he felt the district was quite pleased with its representative.
"She certainly listens to her constituents," Brink said. "She is certainly not an inattentive member of Congress, and representation is one of the things you elect people for, not just issues."
Eshoo sidesteps charges by the Republican challenger Haugen, who has painted himself as an outsider while seeking to portray Eshoo as a tool of big government.
"Whether someone's an insider or an outsider - or however they characterize themselves - it's the voters that will make that judgement," Eshoo said. "I have confidence in the work I have done."
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