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Ex-House member who resigned amid scandal returns in TV ad

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LOS ANGELES (AP) — Katie Hill is back.

The former Democratic congresswoman from Southern California who resigned last year is running a digital and cable TV ad urging residents of her old district to vote in a May 12 special election to determine who will finish her term.

She opens the 30-second ad in a black mask with the White House in the background and delivers a dig at President Donald Trump, saying the coronavirus outbreak is “more dangerous because of what’s coming out of that building.”

She then pulls off the mask and says, “It’s me, Katie Hill.” She doesn’t mention the candidates for the 25th District seat — Democrat Christy Smith and Republican Mike Garcia — but warns voters that “when we take our vote for granted, we put ourselves and our communities in danger.”

“This time, we have to vote like out lives depend on it,” she says.

The ad was funded with $200,000 from Hill’s political action committee, HER Time. The ad is being targeted at voters who turned out in 2018 but did not have a consistent voting history, as well as newly registered voters and those who don’t typically receive a vote-by-mail ballot.

Because of the virus outbreak, virtually all voters are expected to mail in their ballots.

The contest for the swing district north of Los Angeles is considered a toss up and it’s being watched nationally as a proxy vote on Trump’s actions during the crisis.

Hill resigned last year amid a House ethics probe into allegations of an inappropriate sexual relationship with one of her congressional staffers.

Smith and Garcia will face off again in November, to determine who will fill the seat for the full term starting in January 2021.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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