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Jimmy Panetta, the son of former Congressman Leon Panetta, announced his intention to run for the 20th District Congressional seat now held by Sam Farr, who recently said he would not seek re-election. The 20th District includes all of San Benito County.

In a message on his website, Panetta cited his Central Coast roots and family ties.

“I have worked to continue that tradition as a local prosecutor and through my service in the United States Navy. I am devoted to serving the diverse people in our communities and protecting the beauty of this area and I will work to preserve the quality of life we enjoy on the Central Coast,” he said. “This is a challenging time in American politics,” his statement continued. “My goal is to do all that I can to strengthen the trust between the voters and their elected representatives. In order to obtain that objective, I will bring new energy, new ideas, and do everything I can to renew the collaborative spirit that is necessary on Capitol Hill.

Panetta said he is excited about the opportunity to run for elected office “and to continue serving my community and country. I hope that I can earn your support and I look forward to seeing you out on the campaign trail!”

Panetta, a Democrat, is the second candidate to announce a run for the seat Farr is vacating, following Pacific Grove Councilwoman Casey Lucius, a Republican. Democrat Luis Alejo, who represents San Benito County in the California Assembly, has also been mentioned as a possible candidate for the congressional seat.