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Dairyman David Valadao running for newly–drawn 21st Congressional seat

PD News Editor Rebecca Ragain Published on 04 April 2012

David Valadao was raised in Hanford, California, where he grew up working on the family dairy, which was started in 1973. Now, Valadao serves as the managing partner of Valadao Dairy.

The business consists of two separate dairies, as well as over 1,000 acres of farmland in Kings and western Tulare County, on which David and his brothers grow alfalfa, corn and wheat as feed stock.

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Valadao has taken on leadership roles within the California Milk Advisory Board, Western States Dairy Trade Association, and was elected as Regional Leadership Council Chairman for Land O’ Lakes Inc.

Valadao is also a politician. Currently, he is serving his first term in the California State Assembly, representing the 30th district, which includes Kings County and parts of Fresno, Kern and Tulare counties.

He may soon have a much broader sphere of influence.

Valadao is a candidate for the 21st Congressional seat, which opened up when Rep. Jim Costa, D-Fresno, moved into the 16th District.

He is the only Republican in the race, running against Fresno city councilman Blong Xiong and John Hernandez, CEO of the Central California Hispanic Chamber of Commerce.

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According to his website, Valadao's reasons for running include frustration with "having to live and operate a business while suffering the consequences of rules and regulations imposed by out-of-touch bureaucrats in Washington and Sacramento," as well as a desire to "craft solutions instead of sitting on the sidelines."

Valadao launched his campaign in August and has built up a substantial war chest. Federal campaign finance reports show he has raised $414,000 and has cash on hand of $386,000.

The primary election will be held June 5. PD

PD NEWS UPDATE [August 29, 2012]: Valadao was approved during the primary election and will advance to the general election on Nov. 6. He will run against John Hernandez.

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