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Denney says she faces "uphill battle" to unseat LaMalfa in Congressional race

Audrey Denney is trying to unseat 3-term congressman Doug LaMalfa in California's 1st District.

Audrey Denney admits that she's a long shot to beat Republican congressman Doug LaMalfa on November 6th when voters go to the polls in the general election.

"It's going to be an uphill battle," Denny said from her downtown Chico headquarters on 1st Street.

Denney finished in second place well behind LaMalfa who is defending his 1st District seat for the third time.

But the runner-up finish was good enough to put her into the general election where she hopes to convince a traditionally solid district to change course and vote Democratic.

In LaMalfa's three congressional general election victories, he's won by an average margin of 18 points.

Denney believes her path to victory goes through the district's rural areas which, she says, hasn't enjoyed the economic prosperity that the rest of the district has seen with the surging economy.

"When you get to the rural parts of our district you see buildings that are boarded up, downtown places aren't the places they once were," said Denney, who was an agriculture instructor at Chico State and is now a consultant for nonprofit organizations.

There is little agreement on any hot button issues between the progressive Denney and conservative LaMalfa.

The Resistance movement against President Trump, whom LaMalfa supports, will not play a role in Denney's campaign.

In fact, she won't bring up the name Trump unless it's brought up first.

"You know, I'm not running against President Trump," she said. "I'm running against Doug LaMalfa."

Denney estimates she'll need $600,000 to run a competitive race.

She's opened three offices in the district and has hired nine full time staff.

However, of the $200,00 she raised thus far none of it is has come from the Democratic National Committee, which Denney acknowledges could be a sign that the party isn't confident that the race is winnable.

But Denney said she will spend the next five months trying to convince District 1 voters to do the unimaginable.

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