SAN DIEGO, California — Ousted former San Diego Mayor Bob Filner held the 51st Congressional seat until 2012 when he left to run for mayor, and Democrat Juan Vargas took up the vacancy. Two years later, Vargas’s November contender is a novice candidate–88-year-old, married, cross-dressing Republican Stephen “Stephanie” Meade.
Meade served “[i]n the Army during World War II, in college, as a reporter for the Los Angeles Examiner, and then during a career as a salesman in electronics and real estate,” privately dressing as a woman all the while, according to the L.A. Times. After telling his wife of his hidden desires, he has resumed cross-dressing.
Meade does not have a campaign website, but according to the San Diego Union-Tribune, he holds more conservative Republican positions on the issues.
A report by local ABC News affiliate KGTV-10 recorded Meade’s intention to lower the minimum wage, but also to adjust social security for the very wealthy. (What he means by “adjust” was not defined. His stance on more social issues was not immediately apparent.)
Vargas, who is favored to hold the seat, has raised over half a million dollars in support of his campaign, according to Federal Election Commission filings. He has also spent most of that–though he likely has significant potential to raise additional funds, should he need to, despite being linked to a campaign finance scandal (in which he has not personally been accused of wrongdoing, and has returned the funds in question).
Results from California’s June primary election left Meade with 31.3% of the vote and Vargas with 68.3%. Meade reportedly did no campaigning for the primary.