Thuy Lowe is the lone Republican candidate in the 10th Congressional District race, who will face off against one of four Democratic candidates in the November general election. At a fundraiser event Saturday night, she made her case for why she should be the next congressperson to represent the district.

Before her, though, was an array of speakers including Orange County commissioner Pete Clarke, a local businessman, Luiz Zamboni, Cliff Li with the National Committee of Asian American Republicans and J. Rodriguez with Hispanic Republican Organizing.

They touched on the familiar refrains of the 2016 election at large: Lowe, they said, was not a bought-and-sold politician; rather an honest outsider who could bring real change and get to the heart of a problem. Democrats’ solutions were characterized as “wishy-washy,” avoiding the real heart of problems such as Islamic terrorism and education in favor of political correctness.

Lowe, along with Republican presidential front runner Donald Trump, was touted as the ultimate antithesis of those ideals – outsiders who knew how to get things done. They characterized Hillary Clinton and CD 10 Democratic challenger Val Demings as “apathetic” and “bought-and-paid-for” by Washington D.C. lobbyists.

When she took the stage, Lowe got personal and revealed some of her backstory: born in Vietnam, her father fought alongside the American troops in the Vietnam war. They only barely escaped execution in Vietnam and finally made it to the United States as political refugees. There, they started from nothing, with her parents working jobs to provide for the family.

It was these values, Lowe said, that made her uniquely qualified to be in Congress. She said it also rebuked the popular criticism of Republicans – that they didn’t know what it was like to start from nothing.

“I am the product of a family that didn’t have anything,” she said. “There is no excuse. When people meet me and hear my story, and then find out I am a Republican, they say ‘you have no clue of the reality.’ That is so false.”

Her promises included being tough on terror, protecting the Second Amendment and advocating for legal immigration. She also said it was important to advocate for more STEM funding in schools and foster creativity in students – as the American economy was shifting away from its manufacturing roots.

“America is no longer dominated by manufacturing,” she said. “It’s no longer about factories, but about going to college and getting jobs in information and technology. The economy has changed, and we have to change with it.”

While some of her solutions didn’t sound traditionally Republican, Lowe said she wanted to look at solutions to problems rather than being partisan on every issue.

“I don’t want you to look at me as a Republican,” she said. “I want to talk about values and issues. We need to connect to protect families and this country.”

She acknowledged that her fight as the only Republican candidate would be a difficult one, but said she was confident they could win – especially if she focused on the I4 Corridor.

“The Democrats are pushing their narrative,” she said. “We have to push back. We have to preserve our rights.”

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