BY REBECCA KHEEL Californian staff writer email@example.com
Wisconsin's 1st Congressional District is more than 2,000 miles away from Kern County, but there are those here who believe in newly announced Republican vice presidential candidate Paul Ryan enough to have donated money to his re-election campaign for that Congressional seat.
More than 1,500 Californians have contributed to Ryan's Congressional campaign, according to a database compiled by The Sacramento Bee. Of that, 17 are from Kern County.
The Kern donors gave a combined $2,775. Individually, they donated anywhere from $15 to $2,000. They are retirees, an accountant, a farmer and more. Fourteen are from Bakersfield. Three are from Tehachapi, Shafter and Ridgecrest.
One of them is Henry Scharf, 30, a Bakersfield accountant. Scharf gave $50 in July. He did so, he said, because he agrees with Ryan's political philosophy that not everything can be solved or controlled by the government.
"That's what freedom is all about," Scharf said.
Scharf added he donated to a candidate outside his home state because he feels he does not have a voice in California's overwhelmingly Democratic landscape. And now that Ryan is Mitt Romney's running mate, Scharf said he foresees himself donating to that campaign, too.
Another of Kern's donors to Ryan is Bobby Loyd, 82, a retiree, of Bakersfield. He donated $30 in May. He said he agrees with Ryan's Medicare plan. Among other aspects, the plan would change Medicare into a voucher-like program.
"He's going to save Medicare for future generations," said Loyd, who uses Medicare himself. "Something had to be done."
Loyd's reason for donating to a campaign in another state? Because Ryan needed it. He added he will probably contribute to the Romney campaign and would have no matter who was selected as the vice presidential running mate.
But Loyd said he thinks Romney "couldn't have picked a better man."
According to The Bee's database, the three top Ryan donors from Kern County have been:
* Rod Stiefvter of Bakersfield, who listed himself as a farmer, and who gave two donations of $1,000 each in 2011.
* Michael Brown of Bakersfield, who gave Ryan $100 in June;
* And Marjorie Lindsey of Bakersfield who also gave $100 in June.