Harrison Leonard: Former Cougar, Future Congressman?

by Jon Gonzalez, Staff Writer 414 views0

If a congressional election was held tomorrow, Santa Clarita resident — and former COC student — Harrison Leonard wouldn’t be old enough to run. And at 24 years old, he’s exactly one-third the age of incumbent representative of California’s 25th congressional district: Republican Howard P. “Buck” McKeon.

But when November 6, 2012 rolls around, Leonard will be 25-years-young — able to run for congress in the 25th district — and be going up against a man in McKeon, who has not only held his post since Leonard was six, but held his first major public office 25 years ago.

And it’s people like Harrison — who recently received his bachelor’s degree in history from California State University, Northridge — that has all the young moxie that the Democratic Party is looking for.

But too bad for them he’s a Republican. And too bad for McKeon, he’s not your everyday conservative.

That’s because Leonard, who will be likely running against McKeon — unless current redistricting switches congressional lines around — is a Libertarian at heart. It instantly leads to some beliefs you won’t hear your average member of the GOP spitting out during live debates.

Legalization of marijuana? He’s all for it. Same-sex marriage? He’s not opposed to it. You can almost hear the sound conservatives cringing.

He’s the new wave of young Republicans that will likely save the party from future presidential blowouts. He’s the kind of Republican who says he will put the Constitution before Bible.

And if you think that’s hard to believe, Leonard says he would rather leave politics than to play the game of dirty politics, like accepting money from Washington lobbyists.

People will call him young, no doubt. They will say he’s too naiive, just because he won’t stoop down to the lower level of politics. But Howard “Buck” McKeon has to start seeing him as a threat. That’s a guarantee.

To learn more about who Harrison Leonard is as a politician and human being, watch the full-length interview.