Contact Form

    News Details

    Former automotive executive is challenging Rep. Mike Levin in CA-49
    • July 11, 2023

    Sheryl Adams, a former business executive and entrepreneur, is seeking to oust three-term incumbent Mike Levin in California’s 49th congressional district.

    A Del Mar resident, Adams has held executive and managerial positions at several automotive companies, including Ford Motor Company, Hyundai and General Motors. She formally announced her campaign on Tuesday, July 11, becoming the second Republican contender in the race.

    “California … needs a proven businesswoman to offer real solutions to get our country back on track,” Adams said. “As I look at Washington, the same career politicians from both parties have enacted policies that have resulted in record inflation, higher energy costs and health care costs that continue to soar.”

    The 49th district is one of 37 California seats held by Democrats that the national GOP’s campaign arm sees as a “prime pick up” for Republicans. Last year, Levin’s Republican challenger Brian Maryott received over 47% of the vote.

    The coastal district, spanning both Orange and San Diego counties, runs from Dana Point and San Clemente to Solana Beach and Del Mar.

    Economic issues, like inflation and the cost of living, Adams said, are what she wants to tackle if voters send her to Congress.

    “My focus is on fighting against socialist policies that are driving up inflation, making it difficult for families to make ends meet, harming small businesses and driving companies out of California,” she said. “If elected, I will be committed to lowering taxes for families, seniors, young adults and small businesses, opposing any attempts to increase the federal gas tax and restoring critical state and local tax and mortgage interest deductions.”

    Crime is another issue that’s top-of-mind for Adams. She said she believes in providing police with more funding to “equip them with the necessary tools and resources to combat criminal activity.”

    “We all hear about crime out there, but I think it’s coming closer and closer to our world,” Adams said. “I know in my neighborhood it is now something that is on everybody’s mind.”

    She’s already clinched an endorsement from longtime Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Escondido, who represented the district for several terms. In 2018, Issa did not seek reelection and Levin was elected to the seat. Issa was elected to the 50th congressional district two years later.

    “With her extensive experience in business and community advocacy, Sheryl brings a fresh perspective and innovative solutions to the table. She understands the challenges facing our region and has the vision to turn those challenges into real opportunities for progress,” Issa said in a statement. “She is the only candidate that can beat Democrat Mike Levin, who is a rubber stamp for the left and has recklessly embraced far-left policies that are tearing at the very fabric of our district and great nation.”

    Adams said her decision to run was “very well-thought-out and deliberate,” and her intention is to “spend the next 10 years or so in public service.” She’s hit a period of her life where she wants to start giving back, she said.

    “Working for large companies, particularly in the automotive industry, is very competitive and very tricky,” Adams said. “Overarchingly, I have experience in large, complex transactions and negotiations. It really took a skill very similar to what should be happening in Washington, getting everyone to the table to come up with a solution that benefits everyone.”

    Matt Gunderson, another Republican candidate in the race, has a slew of Republican endorsements, including all three Republican members of the Assembly representing areas within the 49th district: Kate Sanchez, Diane Dixon and Laurie Davies. He also has the backing of former state Sen. Patricia Bates, former Rep. Mimi Walters and Lanhee Chen, who recently launched a PAC meant to “promote solutions-oriented Republicans running for office.”

    “With experience running a business in Orange County and a message of fixing America’s broken economy and reducing inflation, Matt Gunderson is the candidate who will beat Mike Levin,” spokesperson Brian Pepin said.

    Said Levin: “Next year’s Congressional elections will be competitive and we are ready to take on whoever advances past the primary.”

    Related Articles

    Politics |

    Sen. Janet Nguyen wants a spot on the OC Board of Supervisors again

    Politics |

    In Orange County’s open congressional race, does prior experience matter?

    Politics |

    Former Google executive enters 2024 US Senate race to succeed California’s Dianne Feinstein

    Politics |

    Rivalry between Trump and DeSantis deepens with dueling New Hampshire campaign events

    Politics |

    Santa Ana College professor eyes state Senate seat

    ​ Orange County Register