That's A Wrap!
The polls have closed in California's 2018 primary, and while some mail-in ballots are still being counted, a number of local races have been all but decided and the field has been narrowed in races for statewide office. Californians have also approved four of the five measures on the June ballot.
Here's a recap of highlights from what was a busy night across the state, and a look at how the governor's race moved forward — with Democrat Gavin Newsom and Republican John Cox to face off in the general.
Thanks for following along, and we'll see you in November!
California Democrats have been denied their supermajority in the state Senate.
Voters in an Orange County district on Tuesday elected former Republican Assemblywoman Ling Ling Chang in a recall election against a Democrat.
Voters removed Democratic Sen. Josh Newman from office over his vote to raise gas taxes last year.
That means Senate Democrats won't hold the two-thirds majority needed to pass tax and fee increases.
Newman narrowly won the traditionally Republican district in the 2016 election, and both parties saw him as vulnerable.
A Republican-backed effort to repeal the tax increase is likely to be on the November ballot.
—The Associated Press
The next governor of the state of California will either be Democratic Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom or Republican businessman John Cox.
The Associated Press has projected that Newsom and Cox will finish first and second, respectively, in the gubernatorial primary and will advance to the November general election.
Updated 12:56 a.m.
Congressman Tom McClintock is calling his victory as the lead in tonight’s primary election for Congressional District 4. The top two candidates advance to the General Election in November.
The district encompasses iconic California destinations like Yosemite and Tahoe and spans from north of Truckee to the Sequoia National Forest. McClintock’s challengers are Democrats Regina Bateson, Jessica Morse, Rosa Calderon, Robert Lawton, and Republican Mitchell White.
As of 1 a.m. Wednesday McClintock, held 51.8 percent of the vote, while Morse held 20 percent, and Bateson held 12.7 percent. About 74 percent of precincts had partially reported at that time.
Polling suggested that McClintock would lead the race. McClintock’s campaign released a statement thanking voters.
“People are excited and people who have never engaged in politics before are engaging for the first time because they are making the connection that who represents us in Washington has a direct impact on our lives,” Morse said earlier in the evening.
Polling suggested that McClintock would lead the race. McClintock’s campaign released a statement thanking voters.
“Tonight’s election is stunning proof that the shrill voices of the left do not speak for the people of our communities, and that as we approach the crucial November mid-term elections, our nation will stay the course and restore American greatness, prosperity, freedom and security,” he said in a press release.
—Ezra David Romero
Other than retired Rep. Darrell Issa, no Republican Congressman won re-election by a closer margin in 2016 than Central Valley Rep. Jeff Denham, in the 10th Congressional district.
But in a year when Democrats are targeting as many seven seats, now the party must worry about failing to send a candidate to the general election.
With 21 percent of precincts partially reporting and early mail-in ballots counted, Denham leads in the race with almost 40 percent of the vote. He’s followed by Democrat Josh Harder, a venture capitalist, who has also led Denham’s challengers in fundraising. Harder has 14.8 percent of the vote so far, but he’s followed closely by a Republican, former Turlock Councilman Ted Howze, who’s challenging Denham from the right.
Behind them, four other Democrat candidates have captured more than 30 percent of the remaining vote. If Howze catches up to Harder as more returns come in, look for Democratic recriminations about “spoiler” candidates who cost the party the opportunity to challenge for one of the most vulnerable seats in this election cycle.
In Sutter County, three candidates — Brandon Barnes, Dennis Hauck and Jeff Pierce — are vying for the sheriff’s seat and have split the vote fairly evenly. Pierce is third.
Also in Sutter County, Measure Y — the $4 million ballot measure that would build or renovate classrooms, bathrooms, and other facilities at Brittan Elementary School in the town of Sutter — has 62 percent at 10 p.m. It needs 55 percent to pass.
In Yuba City, nearly 70 percent of the voters are denying the annexation of a portion of Sutter County. Measure Z would have allowed 625 acres of South Yuba City to be annexed. The measure requires 50 percent of the vote and affects nearly 1,400 parcels between Walton Avenue and Highway 99.
It's been a good night so far for incumbents in Sacramento.
Anne Marie Schubert declared victory over Noah Phillips early in the evening in her race for district attorney. Phillips has not conceded, however, and there remain possibly tens of thousands of ballots to count.
Incumbent council members Rick Jennings, Angelique Ashby and Jay Schenirer were ahead by healthy margins during early vote counts: Three-to-one in Ashby's and Jenning's races, two-to-one in Schenirer’s.
In early voting in the sheriff’s race, Sheriff Scott Jones had more than half the votes in his race. Donna Cox was in second place with 20 percent of the vote. Milo Fitch had 19. Bret Daniels had 5-percent.
Three of the four reform-minded district attorney candidates backed by Democratic billionaire George Soros trailed by wide margins in very early California election results.
The competitors, all considered underdogs taking on more established candidates, trailed by roughly 30 percentage points in Sacramento, Alameda and San Diego counties.
The exception, so far, is Contra Costa County, where the candidate supported by Soros was ahead 49 percent to 42 percent early on. Soros, a liberal New York philanthropist and political donor, is backing candidates who want to make police more accountable, reduce incarceration and revamp the state’s cash bail system.
It looks like Democrats and Republicans will both avoid a lockout in the race to replace long-time GOP Congressman Darrell Issa — or, at least, that’s what the early vote-by-mail returns suggest.
Democrats will also likely get to compete against their preferred Republican candidate in the general election, if the results roughly hold.
California’s “top two” primary system allows the two candidates who get the most votes to advance to the general election, regardless of party. Democrats have been worried that too many well-funded candidates from their party would split the vote, potentially preventing any of them from advancing.
Three Democratic candidates are splitting the early vote return rather evenly: Environmental attorney Mike Levin leads them with 16.7 percent of the vote, followed by non-profit CEO Sara Jacobs with 15.3 percent and retired Marine Col. Doug Applegate with 13.3 percent.
Republicans were also worried about splitting their vote among three or four well-funded candidates. Instead, they’ve done the opposite. Board of Equalization member Diane Harkey leads all candidates with 24.5 percent of the vote, while San Diego County Board of Supervisors chair Kristin Gaspar and Assemblyman Rocky Chavez have so far failed to secure double-digit support.
National Democrats campaigned against Chavez, a moderate, Latino Republican, who they viewed as the most challenging opponent, hoping that the more conservative Harkey would advance. If the early results roughly hold, they will get their wish.
California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom is one of two finalists to lead the most populous state in the nation next year.
The Associated Press projected that the Democratic former mayor of San Francisco had advanced to the November general election shortly after 9 p.m.
Republican businessman John Cox has seized the early lead for the all-important second spot. Under California’s primary system, the top two finishers — regardless of political party — advance to the general election.
They were followed by former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, a Democrat, and Republican Asm. Travis Allen, who are swapping third place back and forth as counties report early-returned vote-by-mail ballots.
Democrats John Chiang, the state treasurer, and Delaine Eastin, a former state schools chief, are in fifth and sixth places, respectively.
Villaraigosa is pinning his hopes on a strong election day turnout among voters, particularly Latinos and Los Angeles County residents, who are historically less likely to cast ballots in midterm primaries.
But a political data firm tracking early vote-by-mail ballot returns suggests Republicans have sent their ballots back at a higher percentage than their share of ballots. Democrats are performing right at their proportion of the electorate that received ballots in the mail, while “no party preference” voters are lagging behind.
Has the blue wave become a red wave? We’ll learn more as election day votes are counted in the hours to come.
Check back for updates throughout the evening, and follow us on Twitter @CapRadioNews and @AdlerBen.
In a Congressional district where Republicans had mailed-in by far the most early ballots, a Democratic challenger still looks likely to make it to the general election.
Early returns for the 39th district indicate former Republican Assemblywoman Young Kim with 29.2 percent of the vote, a commanding lead over her opponents.
Lottery winner Gil Cisneros, the preferred candidate of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, has the second most votes, with 16.1 percent.
Accountant Phil Liberatore, a lesser-known Republican candidate with little fundraising or outside spending for him, is surprisingly in third with 12.2 percent of the vote, ahead of two GOP candidates who have held elected office: Orange County supervisor Shawn Nelson and former state Sen. Bob Huff.
It’s early, but the gap between Cisneros and Liberatore, and the — at least initial — poor showing from more established candidates will dampen Republican hopes of blocking a Democrat from the general election, one that political analysts have rated as potentially competitive.
Longtime Republican Rep. Ed Royce retired this year from the seat he’s held since 1992, despite winning re-election in 2016 by 15 percentage points. The retirement in a district where Hillary Clinton outperformed Donald Trump made the seat a suddenly attractive target for Democrats. The Cook Political Report, which tracks races, rated it as leaning toward Democrats.
But, as the prospect of a Democratic candidate failing to advance to the general election under California’s unusual “top two” primary system increased, Cook changed the rating and listed it as a “Republican Toss-Up.”
If Democrats avoid that scenario, look for political analysts to revise their rating.
Early vote returns in California’s 48th Congressional district may not ease the fears of Democrats that none of their candidates in the race will advance to the general election.
Incumbent Republican Congressman Dana Rohrabacher has held the seat since the 1980s, and early returns from Orange County indicate he looks poised to advance to the general election with 30 percent of the vote so far.
Democrat Hans Keirstead, a stem cell researcher, is nearly tied with former Assembly Republican leader Scott Baugh for the second-place spot. Keirstead has 18.7 percent of the vote to Baugh’s 18 percent.
Early votes trend more conservative, as older, more affluent white voters typically mail in their ballots first. Looked at one way, that could mean Democrats can hope to build on that slight lead.
But Republicans will look for today’s votes to veer away from Keirstead to another Democratic candidate, real estate investor Harley Rouda.
The California Democratic Party endorsed Keirstead, but more recently the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee poured millions of dollars into the race to support Rouda. Perhaps that swayed later voters away from Keirstead? Rouda currently has 14.5 percent of the vote.
If the race is close, it could take days or even weeks for the California Secretary of State’s Office to announce the winners who will advance to the general.
If a lockout does occur, Democrats will rue the number of candidates who entered the race. Aside from Keirstead and Rouda, six other Democrats were on the ballot. They drew more than 13 percent of the early vote, while Republicans overwhelmingly favored their top two candidates. Only 6.1 percent of the Republican early vote went to GOP candidates other than Baugh or Rohrabacher.
Democrat Sen. Dianne Feinstein is leading in the California Senate race with 43 percent of the vote after early reports.
Republican candidate James Bradley trails Feinstein with 10 percent, and Democratic state SEn. Kevin De Leon is in third place with 9 percent. The polls just closed at 8 p.m., so these are still very early results. This is Bradley’s first election for any office. Meanwhile, Feinstein is the longest current-serving female U.S. senator.
Source: California Secretary of State’s website: https://vote.sos.ca.gov/returns/us-senate
Amador County ran out of ballots today, and in some areas, ran out pretty early.
According to one resident, the county kept people waiting for hours as the county clerk’s office waited for a second delivery of ballots to arrive from Sacramento.
Steve Muni says he attempted to vote at six o’clock tonight and was told to come back.
"I went back at 7 p.m. and was told no ballots still and no ETA on the ballots,” he said. “I was told also by the volunteers up there manning that there were no plans to keep the polls past eight. They had no idea. They had been told there were ballots coming from Sacramento.”
He says ballots arrived at about 7:40 p.m. and he was able to vote.
Muni says he is surprised that the county ran out.
"Yes, it's an off-year election. But there's an open governor's seat. There's a senate race. There's essentially an open attorney general's race. There's an open insurance commissioner's race. People are going to be turning out like mad,” Muni said.
Kimberly Grady is the Amador County Clerk Recorder. She says the California Secretary of State’s office estimated state voter turnout as very low. She says her office doubled that number when it ordered ballots.
“I believe the state estimate was 20 percent. We did 40-ish. Maybe a little more,” she said.
Grady says the first reports she received of precincts running out happened at about 2 p.m.
She said they started using office ballots that they typically use to test machines when they ran out. “You can use sample ballots. I actually went and got more ballots from the printer in Sacramento. We can make copies of the ballots we have and they can vote on paper and then [we can] deal with them ... after the fact during the canvas.”
Grady says she believes races for school superintendent, judge, county supervisor, and several state offices drove the higher voter turnout.
She says anyone who was in line at 8 p.m. will be allowed to vote once the ballots arrive. As of 8:20 p.m., the ballots were en route from Sacramento.
The Secretary of State's Office was aware of the shortage but had no comment.
Scott Jones’ bid for a third term as Sacramento sheriff appears strong based on early election results. The incumbent had 54 percent of the vote with about 100,000 votes counted. But tens-of-thousands of ballots remain to be counted.
Should he maintain that lead, Jones would be re-elected and avoid a November run-off. His closest competitor is Donna Cox at 20.75 percent, while Milo Fitch was at 19.44 percent.
Gavin Newsom’s campaign is by far the biggest, longest-running and best funded of anyone in the 2018 California governor’s race.
The Democratic lieutenant governor is holding his election night party in the heart of San Francisco, the city he led for years and at the center of his Bay Area base of support in today’s primary election.
And he’s widely expected to be declared the first-place finisher soon after polls close at 8 p.m. In fact, if — as he hopes — Republican John Cox finishes second, Newsom would enter the November general election as the overwhelming favorite to become California’s next governor.
So did he choose a big hotel ballroom to celebrate with a crowd of hundreds — if not thousands — of cheering activists?
His campaign staff, volunteers and handpicked supporters are gathering at Verso, a cozy night club on Mission Street.
“No crowd too big, no room too small,” Newsom advisor Dan Newman said with a smile, reciting the fundamental rule of advance work — the art of staging a political event.
Newsom expects the news to be good tonight. The question is, just how good will it be.
Check back for updates throughout the evening, and follow us on Twitter @CapRadioNews and @AdlerBen.
Democratic State Sen. Josh Newman of Fullerton is fighting to save his job tonight in the face of a recall election that may contribute to the loss of the Dems supermajority in the state Senate.
Unlike some of his Democratic colleagues in the Legislature, Newman has not been accused of sexual misconduct, nor has he broken the law.
But he may have broken from a majority of his constituents last year by supporting higher taxes on gasoline. The gas tax was not an unusual or unpredictable vote for Newman — the law was widely supported by Newman’s Democratic legislative colleagues and Gov. Jerry Brown.
Newman represents a more conservative region of California that spans from Anaheim to Chino Hills. In that 29th Senate district, registered Democrats slightly outnumber registered Republicans. But 64 percent of Southern California voters who live outside of Los Angeles want to repeal the gas tax law, while 28 percent want to keep it, according to a recent USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll.
In 2016, Newman won his seat by only 1 percent of the vote over former Assemblywoman Ling Ling Chang. His win gave Democrats a supermajority in the Senate, which allows the ruling party to pass tax and fees without Republican support.
Newman cast the controversial vote for a statewide gas tax in April 2017. Soon after, the state Republican Party spent more than $800,000 to collect enough signatures to qualify Newman’s recall election on the June ballot.
The ballot in Newman’s Fullerton district asks voters whether they want to recall him, and in a separate question asks voters to choose his replacement. The Senate recall race includes three Democrats and three Republicans, including Ling Ling Chang, whom Newman barely nudged out in his 2016 victory.
Republicans have another reason for wishing to oust Newman tonight: His district overlaps with Republican Rep. Ed Royce, who is in one of the most competitive House races in the nation. Heavy Republican voter turnout against Newman could help Royce maintain the House seat.
Los Angeles County has notified voters of a major error.
Almost 120,000 registered voters have been left off the rolls at their neighborhood polling places — although they can still vote at those sites.
The Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder’s office sent out a statement on Tuesday evening calling the missing names a “printing error” that affected nearly a third of the county’s polling sites. Per the statement, the registrar does not know why the names did not print.
Voters whose names are not on the list should still be offered provisional ballots, which take longer to count. That could affect the time it takes to know results in a few key races, including whether Democrats have been “locked out” of the race for the 39th Congressional seat, viewed as one of the most contested districts in the state, after long-time Republican Rep. Ed Royce retired.
Los Angeles County has more than 5 million registered voters on its rolls.
Today is as super a Tuesday as it’s going to get during this primary election season — and the press has the Golden State in the crosshairs.
Here’s a quick peek at five national media stories that have trickled out in the past 24 hours:
“Jungle Primary.” This buzzword of the day is just a snappier term for California’s top-two primary model, where the first- and second-place vote-getters in statewide races move on to Election Day in November. This piece by Five Thirty Eight explores how Democrats and Republicans could be shut out of the November runoffs because of the “jungle” format.
The Cook Political Report has a rundown of Congressional races that could change hands this election cycle.
The New York Times on the influence of Latino voters.
CNN explores the intersection of the Me Too movement and the primary races.
This year’s election results won’t be final-final for at least a month after election day. There are mostly two reasons for this:
- This is the first time you can register and vote on the same day in California. Voters who register on today are given a “provisional ballot,” which will be put into a separate folder than the mail in ballots and ballots of people who already registered to vote. The voting authority office has 30 days to verify all the information on the ballot (like your full name and address) and then count the votes
- If you choose to vote by mail, you have until the end of tonight to postmark and mail the ballot. It must arrive within three days after election day, and then they’ll be added to the final tally.
In short, regardless of how clear the election results are tonight, the vote counting could go on a month.
The State superintendent race may be decided tonight.
Unlike other races on today’s primary slate, Californians may decide tonight their next statewide schools chief.
The state superintendent of public instruction is California's only nonpartisan statewide office, and under election rules it can be decided every four years in the primary election if a candidate wins by clear majority.
That is to say that frontrunner state superintendent candidates Tony Thurmond or Marshall Tuck would instantly win the election tonight and become California’s 28th schools chief if either candidate receives more than 50 percent of the popular vote.
The state superintendent race differs from other statewide offices under California’s top-two primary system. With other offices, including those for governor and the state Senate and Assembly, the two candidates that receive the most votes advance to a succeeding runoff election, regardless of vote count. Other nonpartisan offices that can be decided in a primary election include county elections such as district attorney and sheriff.
Despite the nonpartisan rules, frontrunner candidates Tuck and Thurmond have both brandished their Democratic party affiliation to broaden their appeal among voters. Thurmond is backed by the California Teachers Association, while Tuck is supported by advocates for charter schools.
Capital Public Radio’s Sammy Caiola chatted with reporter Bob Moffitt about the Sacramento sheriff and district attorney races. They also looked at Measure E in Placer County
Click above to listen.
Trustees of Placer County’s main community college say it needs help.
When Sierra College’s campus in Rocklin opened in the early ’60s, there were fewer than 1,500 students. Today, there's more than 20,000 — and that growth has put pressure on the campus’ infrastructure. That’s why the Sierra College’s Board of Trustees placed Measure E on the ballot.
The school says the $350 million bond measure would cost homeowners around $5 a month. The funds will be used locally, and officials say “none of the money will be sent to Sacramento.”
The college plans to use the funds to modernize existing buildings, build a new science building, and some of the money would be used for expanded training for law enforcement, firefighters and nurses. The bond cannot be used for staff or administrator salaries or pensions.
Most of the students who attend Sierra College transfer to a four-year school and majority of the school’s population comes from El Dorado, Placer, and Nevada Counties. Less than a quarter hail from Sacramento County.
Opponents of Measure E say the bond is too costly and that the construction promises are not guaranteed.
The Sacramento Bee recommends a yes vote on the measure and the state community college chancellor's office approves of the project.
Loyal listeners know that Insight With Beth Ruyak airs live every weekday at 9 a.m.
But … tune into a special, live Insight at 7 p.m. for special coverage of today’s election. Beth will chat with CapRadio reporters live from “watch parties” around the region and speak with the Sacramento County Registrar about how the count of the primary vote will take place tonight and in the coming days (and possible weeks).
While California’s Congressional elections have, deservedly, pulled most of the focus this primary election, the state Legislature also has a lot at stake.
The results could determine whether Democrats recapture the supermajority they won in the 2016 election, which has since been depleted by lawmakers’ resignations after allegations of sexual misconduct. In both the Assembly and the Senate, Democrats are currently one vote shy of a two-thirds supermajority, a threshold needed to pass tax and fee increases and enact legislation immediately.
Winners in Tuesday’s elections will fill the seats vacated by Democratic Assemblymen Raul Bocanegra and Matthew Dababneh last fall. Those districts held their special election primaries in April.
A Los Angeles-area Senate district also holds its primary today, although a candidate could win outright, if they receive more than 50 percent of the vote.
Former Democratic state Sen. Tony Mendoza is also running to win back the seat he reluctantly resigned in February after a sexual harassment investigation. Mendoza is running in both the special election — to fill out the remainder of his term — as well as for re-election next year. Eight Democrats and two Republicans are running against him.
Another complication: If Mendoza wins, the state Senate would have to decide whether to seat him again, just months after pressuring him out.
All three of the districts are solidly Democratic, and the party expects to hold them.
But the GOP could still prevent a supermajority, if they win in another race and successfully recall Democratic state Senator Josh Newman in a district that — until 2016 — has long voted Republican.
President Trump Tweets For California Republicans
He revisited his endorsement for governor hopeful John Cox:
In High Tax, High Crime California, be sure to get out and vote for Republican John Cox for Governor. He will make a BIG difference!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 5, 2018
And he doubled-down on the “High Tax, High Crime” Golden State nickname in his pitch for Republican Congressional hopefuls:
Get the vote out in California today for Rep. Kevin McCarthy and all of the great GOP candidates for Congress. Keep our country out of the hands of High Tax, High Crime Nancy Pelosi.— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 5, 2018
And specifically touted Rep. Devin Nunes:
Vote for Congressman Devin Nunes, a true American Patriot the likes of which we rarely see in our modern day world....he truly loves our country and deserves everyone’s support!— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) June 5, 2018
An analysis by Cook Political Report suggests that Nunes will likely retain his seat.
UPDATE 3:45 p.m.
In Sutter County, voters have Measures Y and Z to consider.
Measure Y would build or renovate classrooms, bathrooms, and other facilities at Brittan Elementary School in the town of Sutter. The measure would allow the Brittan Elementary School District to issue $4 million in bonds and would add 3 cents for every $100 in assessed value to property owners. Fifty-five percent of the vote is required to pass.
Measure Z would allow 625 acres of South Yuba City to be annexed by the town of Yuba City. The measure requires 50 percent of the vote and affects nearly 1,400 parcels between Walton Avenue and Highway 99.
UPDATE 3:15 p.m.
Fact Check: Any Truth To Sheriff Scott Jones’ Claim Of ‘Paid Protesters’ At Stephon Clark Demonstration?
Sacramento County Sheriff Scott Jones claimed at an April press conference that "paid protesters" inflamed recent demonstrations over the death of Stephon Clark, a 22-year-old shot and killed by police.
In his re-election bid, Jones faces challengers Milo Fitch, who works with the California Prison Industry Authority, Donna Cox, a retired sheriff’s sergeant, and Bret Daniels, a member of the Citrus Heights City Council.
Jones appears to be the only top law enforcement official to make this assertion about paid protesters and repeatedly said he has evidence to back it up. His spokesman, however, declined to provide any information to support it and said it’s unlikely they ever will.
Protest organizers said Sacramento’s streets were filled with volunteers, not for-hire demonstrators. They’ve called the sheriff’s claim baseless. We found no evidence to support the claim.
When we evaluate statements at PolitiFact California, the burden of proof is on the person making the claim.
We’ll assess any information that might be released in the future.
In the meantime, we rated Jones’ claim False.
UPDATE 2:30 p.m.
Last month, Capital Public Radio’s fact-checking project, PolitiFact California, looked into a TV campaign ad that describes incumbent DA Anne Marie Schubert as a “groundbreaking DNA expert” and says she led the team that “solved” the Golden State Killer case. Schubert is being challenged by Noah Phillips, a deputy district attorney in the DA’s office.
We didn’t place any ratings on the claims. But it’s clear that Schubert is not a DNA expert — at least not from a scientific standpoint. It is correct to say she’s prosecuted many DNA cases, however.
News articles and information from Schubert’s campaign indicate she did have a key leadership role with the team that ultimately arrested Joseph James DeAngelo, the suspect in the case.
What’s also clear is that retired Contra Costa County investigator Paul Holes was a driving force in the investigation.
Holes, and not Schubert, is credited with taking the unorthodox approach of scouring open source genealogical websites to ultimately find the suspect.
UPDATE 1:45 p.m.
Four Democrats and a Republican are vying for the California congressional seat of Republican Rep. Tom McClintock, which he's held for almost a decade.
District 4 encompasses iconic California destinations like Yosemite and Tahoe and spans from north of Truckee to the Sequoia National Forest. His challengers in both parties — Democrats Regina Bateson, Jessica Morse, Rosa Calderon, Robert Lawton, and Republican Mitchell White — want to make the race about environmental issues.Ezra David Romero / Capital Public Radio
The June election will determine which two candidates move on to the November election. Earlier this year, The Sacramento Bee endorsed Democratic candidates Regina Bateson and Jessica Morse. The California Democratic Party endorsed Morse. Still, polling suggests the district will again go to McClintock.
In a last-minute hurdle for Democrats running against McClintock, some drama popped up this past week. It has to do with Facebook posts that one candidate says are "Russian-inspired disinformation" monitored in a way to sway conversation and potential votes.
The posts were created and paid for by Rocklin-based activist Paul Smith, who started a Facebook page in 2017 called Sierra Nevada Revolution. Smith wants a Democrat to beat McClintock, and he says his posts are activism.
—Ezra David Romero
UPDATE 12:53 p.m.
To commemorate the unusual role that California is poised to play in this year’s House of Representative midterm elections, CapRadio launched Keys To The House last month. The podcast, in the words of host Ben Bradford, explores how California Congressional seats that were solidly Republican are suddenly up for grabs.
There are three episodes so far. And be sure to tune in later this week for a primary election post-mortem episode.
Learn more here.
UPDATE 12:30 p.m.
Democrats fear a “lockout” — or scenario where the vote splits among multiple Dem candidates, leading to none of them making the November runoff — in three House of Representative districts long-held by Republicans, but that both parties see as vulnerable. In each case, several well-funded but less-well-known Democrats are running against more prominent Republicans.
UPDATE 12 p.m.
If you find yourself searching “California ballot propositions” only today, then you’re likely the type of voter who might benefit from CapRadio’s round-up of the five measures in play during today’s primary.
Mercifully, my colleagues have done the heavy lifting. Behold, our roundup of Propositions 68 through 72.
UPDATE 11:40 a.m.
The high-profile contest with the least drama in this California primary election is the race for U.S. Senate. Probably. Depending on the polling.
Incumbent Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein is once-again running for re-election, her fifth full-term. Polls consistently show her with a commanding, double-digit lead in the race.Ben Adler / Capital Public Radio
While 31 challengers have submitted their names as candidates against Feinstein, only former state Senate leader Kevin de León, a Los Angeles Democrat, has run a serious campaign.
Feinstein dwarfs him in fundraising, but de León has received major endorsements from labor unions such as SEIU and the California Labor Federation.
However, conducting polling in California’s unusual top-two primary system with no recognizable Republican candidate on the ballot is tricky. Anywhere from a quarter to 40 percent of Republicans have listed themselves as undecided, a percentage that far exceeds de León’s expected vote total.
With no clear answer as to why, recent polls from the Berkeley Institute of Government Studies have shown one of the 11 GOP candidates, James Bradley, closing within range of de León. Two other oft-cited polling outlets show no such movement, although one — from the Public Policy Institute of California — only lists de León and Feinstein, requiring respondents to specify another candidate.
The uncertainty among voters and polling adds a small hint of mystery to a primary race that has otherwise seemed settled.
UPDATE 11:15 a.m.
The chance to lead the biggest state in the nation — and the world’s fifth-largest economy.
That’s what’s at stake in the 2018 California governor’s race, and there are a lot of people running to replace termed-out Democrat Jerry Brown.
If you’re still looking to get to know them a bit before you cast your primary ballot, we’ve posted a series of quick podcasts introducing you to the six most prominent candidates.
You’ll meet four Democrats and two Republicans in just 10 minutes each with CapRadio’s California’s Next Governor podcast, available on iTunes, Google Play or wherever you get your podcasts.
In alphabetical order, they are:
- Republican Travis Allen, an Orange County assemblyman
- Democratic state Treasurer John Chiang, who previously served as state controller
- Republican John Cox, a San Diego businessman
- Democrat Delaine Eastin, a former state schools chief and assemblywoman
- Democratic Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom, a former mayor of San Francisco
- Democrat Antonio Villaraigosa, a former mayor of Los Angeles and California Assembly speaker
And here’s our look at the leading contenders from last month, when vote-by-mail ballots were sent out.
UPDATE 11:05 a.m.
Races To Watch In Sacramento County
In Sacramento, Anne Marie Schubert and Noah Phillips are running for district attorney. Schubert is vying for a second term and has been the target of protests following the Stephon Clark shooting, with demonstrators demanding she prosecute the officers who shot the unarmed black man.
Phillips is an assistant district attorney and says the DA’s office must do more to encourage better outcomes for people from poorer areas of the county.
In the Sacramento County sheriff's race, Scott Jones is facing three challengers: retired jail commander Milo Fitch, retired K-9 sergeant Donna Cox and Citrus Heights City Councilman Bret Daniels. They each say they would be better suited than Jones to lead reforms. Jones says he has overseen several inmate rehabilitation programs already.
UPDATE 10:45 a.m.
No major candidate in the race for governor of the Golden State has avoided the scrutiny of Capital Public Radio’s fact-checkers. PolitiFact California has produced more than 40 fact checks and articles investigating the accuracy of their claims.
It’s election time: How have the candidates for California governor fared with the facts? https://t.co/v6pyTlCB6G #TrackingTheTruth #Election2018 #CAGov2018 @CapRadioNews @PolitiFact pic.twitter.com/TTpR5zEua0— PolitiFactCalifornia (@CAPolitiFact) June 4, 2018
One example is the “false” rating we placed on Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom’s claim he was “the first to take on the National Rifle Association and win.”
Another is our examination of a potentially misleading campaign mailer showing former President Barack Obama embracing gubernatorial candidate and former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa. We found Obama hasn’t endorsed in the race.
Check out all of our fact checks here.
Visit PolitiFact California’s Tracking The Truth page to see all our our fact checks in the 2018 California governor’s race.
UPDATE 10:20 a.m.
CapRadio Previews Congressional Races With NPR
CapRadio’s Ben Adler connected with NPR’s Steve Inskeep to look at California’s unusual role in impacting whether Democrats or Republicans will seize a majority in the House of Representatives.
UPDATE 9:50 a.m.
Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio
Andrew Nixon / Capital Public Radio
This year, Sacramento County is providing “voting centers” for people to cast their ballot instead of polling places (here’s a story on what that means).
There have been some concerns raised that people might be confused by the change, because the word might not have gotten out. But some polling places that are no longer functioning have signs in front of them, directing them to voting centers.
UPDATE 9:00 a.m.
Sacramento County is switching to a “voter center” model for today’s election, but some people are concerned the change may confuse voters. Read more about the changes and whether voters will be confused here.
UPDATE 8:30 a.m.
Today’s vote will determine the two finalists who will face-off in November to succeed Gov. Jerry Brown. And since Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom is widely expected to win one of the two tickets, most consider this primary vote a battle to come in second.
Here’s more details on the race.
UPDATE 7:45 a.m.
Today is California’s primary election day, and Californians have a jam-packed primary ballot to fill out.
They’ll will pick two candidates in California’s U.S. Senate race, as well as for governor and the other seven statewide constitutional offices.
One of those races, state schools chief, could be decided outright tonight if one candidate wins a simple majority.
Voters will also decide which candidates advance to the November general election in all 53 congressional districts — including seven seen as pivotal to Democratic efforts to recapture the House.
A recall in a Southern California state Senate district could strip Democrats of their supermajority in the Legislature.
And there are five statewide ballot measures — Propositions 68 through 72. They include a $4 billion parks and water bond, and pieces of the gas tax and cap-and-trade deals lawmakers struck last year with Gov. Jerry Brown.
Polls are open until 8 p.m. If you still have your vote-by-mail ballot, you can turn it in at a polling place, or mail it as long as it’s postmarked by today and arrives at your county’s election office within the next three days.
6/5/18 7 a.m.
Here’s how the second screen works: You may be watching election results on TV today. But here at CapRadio, we’re offering a “second screen” destination for all your election news, including the latest results beginning when polls close at 8 p.m.
We’ll also have Facebook Live updates and insight, and reporting from reporters who can explain what the results mean.
Use your smartphone or device to follow our frequent updates.
And don’t forget to join us again on Wednesday, when you’ll get the day’s first wrap-up of results during Morning Edition with Steve Milne, Donna Apidone and the CapRadio News team.