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Democrat Katie Hill will challenge GOP Rep. Steve Knight in 2018

Congressional candidate Katie Hill, executive director of a statewide organization that provides homeless services and develops housing. None
Congressional candidate Katie Hill, executive director of a statewide organization that provides homeless services and develops housing.

Democrat Katie Hill will run for a north Los Angeles County congressional seat currently held by Republican Rep. Steve Knight (R-Lancaster). 

Hill, a political newcomer at age 29, is the executive director and deputy CEO of People Assisting the Homeless, or PATH, a statewide organization that provides homeless services and develops housing.

Hill grew up in Santa Clarita and Antelope Valley and currently lives in the 25th Congressional District on a farm in Agua Dulce with her husband and several rescue animals.

Knight's district is almost evenly split between registered Democrats and Republicans, while about a fifth of voters list themselves as "no party preference." National Democrats have targeted Knight's seat as one they want to flip in 2018.

Hill said she is a good fit for the "purple district" since she grew up there and knows the values of swing voters who may have voted for Hillary Clinton but also for Knight. Her family is half Republican, she said. 

"We in the 25th District are really in the middle in a lot of ways," she said. "People are looking to both sides and figuring out if we can find common ground."

Many of the local Democratic clubs in the area have been protesting Knight at his district offices and at a recent town hall. Hill said she hoped to tap into those activists' energy but focus it "on a more cohesive message."

Hill said she plans on mounting a serious campaign and is using the prominent Los Angeles political consulting firm SKDKnickerbocker.

Democrats Bryan Caforio, who lost to Knight in November, and Christy Smith, who lost a state Assembly campaign last November, both said they are considering running for the seat in 2018.

UPDATES: March 8, 2:31 p.m: Democrat Christy Smith said Wednesday she will run against state Assemblyman Dante Acosta (R-Valencia) in 2018, setting up a potential rematch between the candidates who faced off in 2016.

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