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What’s it like to be elected at 23? Just ask this Republican House candidate.

Welcome back to Five Questions!

Today, meet state Rep. Marilinda Garcia, a Republican who wants to unseat Rep. Ann McLane Kuster (D-N.H.). Garcia, 31, recently participated in a panel discussion on conservatism and women at the Conservative Political Action Conference. She was elected to the state legislature when she was just 23.

Garcia is running against former state senator Gary Lambert in the GOP primary. Lambert has been placed "On the Radar" by the National Republican Congressional Committee, the first tier of its program to identify top challengers and open seat candidates.

We sat down to chat with Garcia on Monday. Below is video of her "Five Questions" segment, followed by a transcript of our discussion edited for brevity and clarity.

Republican Marilinda Garcia serves in the New Hampshire State House. She's making a run for the U.S. Congress and would be one of the youngest members if she won. (Jeff Simon/The Washington Post)

1. You were elected to the state House at age 23. Were there people who didn't take you seriously?

There are a number of ways one can go about it. My general operational style is to get in there, be serious, listen a lot and talk a little less. Overall, I wore black and my glasses a lot. (Laughs). You know, you want to be taken seriously and let people know you are there to make a difference.

2. You play the harp. Your sister plays the flute. Which is harder to learn?

I'll just say moving the harp is certainly more difficult than the flute. As far as playing the instruments? My sister is phenomenal, she was a a child prodigy; I am decent.

3. Do you think Congress will pass an immigration reform bill by 2016?

I can't say that I know what they'll do. But, certainly it's an area that needs some serious reform. The rule of law is not clear.

4. What advice would you give to a Republican running for president who wants to win the New Hampshire primary?

Spend a lot of time in Salem. (Laughs.) That's my home town, of course. Look, we're a very unique state due to our outsized influence. You can have the future president in your living room in our state and that's what people expect. So, I would just say enjoy it.

5. You grew up in the the '90s. Why do we need more people of your generation in Congress?

We've had some problems that are long-term. They are not going away. Having grown up in the '90s through the digital area with the growing global economy, I think we have the most connected perspective and understanding of how the world works in those ways.

Sean Sullivan has covered national politics for The Washington Post since 2012.



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