Even as California Republicans won back a state Senate seat last night, in the recall election of Democrat Josh Newman, they may have lost a long-held Assembly seat.
Much of the focus this election was on how the state’s unusual top-two primary system could lock Democrats out of otherwise competitive Congressional races in November. But instead, it appears Republicans have been locked out of a northern San Diego County state Assembly seat.
Voting data analyst Paul Mitchell says far more Democrats turned out than normal, likely to cast ballots in the race to replace retiring GOP Congressman Darrell Issa.
“The overperformance of Democrats in the Issa district was actually so great that underlying it was a little Assembly race,” Mitchell said. “That little Assembly race — that’s been held by Republicans for years — flipped to be two Democrats making the run-off.”
More votes remain to tally, but as of Wednesday, Democrats Tasha Boerner Horvath and Elizabeth Warren (not the U.S. Senator) each have a quarter of the vote, while Republican Phil Graham has 20 percent. Five other Republican candidates split the remainder of the vote between them — another 28 percent.
Assemblyman Rocky Chavez did not run for re-election, instead choosing to run for Issa’s seat.