COLUMBUS, Ind. (CN) – Democratic presidential hopeful and California Rep. Eric Swalwell made a stop in his wife’s hometown on Sunday to speak in front of a group of potential voters to make his case for being his parties’ next presidential nominee.
Speaking before a crowd of roughly 200 people in the historic Roviar Building in Columbus, Indiana, the 38-year-old congressman from California’s 15th District hammered home his campaign slogan of “Go big. Be bold. Do good.”
“Nothing is going to change,” Swalwell said. “Until we have a leader in the White House who is willing to go big with the issues we take on, be bold with the solutions we offer, and do good in the way that we treat each other and in the way that we govern. That’s why I’m running for president of the United States.”
During the roughly 90-minute event, Swalwell started with a speech and took several questions from the audience on topics ranging from gun control to climate change.
The California congressman, who has held his office since 2012, expressed his desire for increased gun control laws and has said he would support a total ban on assault weapons.
“I’m running for president to take the dangerous guns away from the dangerous people,” Swalwell said. He also criticized the “sick ritual of loss, grief, anger and then thoughts and prayers as an alibi for doing nothing” in the aftermath of mass shootings.
Swalwell also spoke about crime and racial injustice in law enforcement. He said he would require any police department that receives federal funds to force its officers to wear body cameras, and that there should be an effort to make police forces look as racially diverse as their communities.
Swalwell was joined by his wife Brittany, and expressed excitement about visiting his partner’s hometown prior to the event.
“Our campaign is all about the issues most important to America’s hometowns,” Swalwell said. “I’ve recently visited my hometowns of Algona, Iowa, and Dublin, California, and we’ll bring our message – extending the promise of America to all Americans – to Brittany’s hometown of Columbus as well.”
Swalwell started his career in the Alameda County prosecutor’s office and went on to hold a seat on the city council for Dublin, California.
Perhaps the most important year of Swalwell’s career was 2012, however, after he beat fellow Democrat and 40-year incumbent Pete Stark for a seat in the House of Representatives.
During his time in Congress, Swalwell has been active as a member of the House Intelligence and Judiciary Committee, and also founded the Future Forum, a group of House Democrats meant to support millennial Americans.
In addition to his committee work, Swalwell has co-sponsored several pieces of legislation, including the Dream Act of 2017 which sought to cement legal protections for undocumented immigrants and would have provided certain immigrants a pathway to citizenship.
The California congressman has also co-sponsored several items of legislation that seek to increase transparency in campaign finance laws and that would attempt to decrease the influence of super PACs on elections.
Swalwell has used frequent cable news appearances and his openness regarding wanting tough gun control laws in an attempt to raise his profile in a crowded Democratic field of potential candidates.
Regardless of his current polling numbers, Swalwell is hitting the ground hard in important primary states, with several visits to Iowa and New Hampshire already planned.
In a post event press gaggle, Swalwell emphasized the need to focus on issues that affect young families like his own, including universal preschool across America and healthcare costs.
“Having a young family in the White House, I think you’ll get an advocate for so many of these family issues,” Swalwell said.