California 25th District
The settled area of Los Angeles County does not end at the mountains at the northern rim of the San Fernando Valley. It continues along Route 14 past the mountain-surrounded city of Santa Clarita, with 170,000 residents, and the Six Flags Magic Mountain theme park, past the former gold-mining center of Acton, and on to where the mountains stop at the San Andreas Fault and the desert stretches out low and flat. This is Antelope Valley, with huge aerospace plants and military bases around the fast-growing towns of Palmdale and Lancaster, where more than 285,000 people live. Not far from upscale shopping centers, there has been a resurgence of specialty farm crops such as baby carrots, organic onions, and parsnips. Traffic congestion and incidents of gang crime have supplanted the once rural lifestyle. A new expressway that’s under construction will eventually link Antelope and Victor valleys. However, overall transportation services were set back in 2009 when the Palmdale airport closed, two months after United Airlines ended flights to the airport. The adjacent Air Force Plant 42 is home to many defense contractors, with projects that include the B-2 Stealth Bomber, the F-117 Stealth Fighter, and the Joint Strike Fighter. Beyond Antelope Valley, the desert stretches for miles, with clumps of human settlement—Edwards Air Force Base, where Chuck Yeager flew the X-1 and where the Space Shuttle has frequently landed, and the desert towns of Victorville and Barstow.
2008 Presidential Vote
|Cook Partisan Voting Index|
The 25th Congressional District of California covers these areas, though it shares Edwards AFB with the 22nd District. Geographically, it is vast, the largest in the state. It extends far to the north, across the almost uninhabited Mojave Desert and mountains to include the national parks of Death Valley and Owens Valley. The military occupies hundreds of thousands of acres with its China Lake Naval Air Weapons Station, the Goldstone deep-space communications complex, and the battlefield training center at Fort Irwin. The district then swings north to include mountainous Inyo and Mono counties. Politically, this has been a Republican district, though in the 2008 presidential election, Democrat Barack Obama won 49.4%-48.3%.