Rep. Susan Davis / Photo by Adriana Heldiz

California’s 53rd Congressional District reaches from Mission Hills in the west to Santee in the east and down to Otay Ranch. It’s solidly Democratic; Gov. Gavin Newsom won it handily in 2018, as did Hillary Clinton in 2016.

Rep. Susan Davis has represented the district for nearly 20 years. She announced Wednesday she will not seek re-election in 2020.

That announcement could set off some dominoes.

With the potential political maneuvering that could come from the news, hosts Scott Lewis, Andrew Keatts and Sara Libby put their punditry prowess to the test by drafting their picks for who’s likeliest to jump into the race.

A sampling of the picks:

  • Former congressional candidate and current Kroc Institute Scholar Sara Jacobs
  • San Diego City Council President Georgette Gómez
  • San Diego County Supervisor Nathan Fletcher

Davis, the woman whose announcement kicked off the frenzy, also called in to the show to talk about the timing of her decision, her proudest moments in Congress and what qualities she seeks in her replacement.

The draft starts at 12:30 in the podcast. 

The CityBeat Beat

San Diego CityBeat’s editor in chief Seth Combs was abruptly fired on Friday right as he was on his way to report a story.

As VOSD contributor Julia Dixon Evans wrote this week, Combs declared the paper effectively “dead.”

Combs joined the podcast this week to talk a bit more about how it all went down and what exactly “dead” might mean.

He put it this way: “They (CityBeat) will still be able to use the ‘write for exposure’ model … where they’re not paying anyone at all. It’s just, ‘you’re writing content for us. For free. And you’re doing it because you’re just a hungry writer and you want your name out there.’”

The Combs interview starts at 25:45 in the podcast.

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Nate John is the digital manager at Voice of San Diego. He oversees Voice's website, newsletters, podcasts and product team. You can reach him at

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