Here’s 10 things about Tuesday’s election

California Flag 3Tuesday’s election upended everything most experts thought they knew about politics, when Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton to become the next president with one of the most unconventional campaigns ever. 

But down the ballot, 10 things stood out.

  • Nearly 50,000 people voted for Roger Hernandez, a termed-out Democratic assemblyman from West Covina who had been running for Congress until he suspended his campaign after he was placed under a domestic violence restraining order and was stripped of his committee assignments.

  • Congressman Darrell Issa seems to have won re-election. Although it’s still close and the Los Angeles Times had not yet called the race, Issa maintains a nearly 4,000-vote lead over Democrat Doug Applegate. This isn’t noteworthy because Issa was vulnerable and squeaked out a win. It was noteworthy because Issa, the richest member of Congress, wasn’t seen as vulnerable. The Vista Republican, in his 15th year in Congress, has been one of the most high-profile Republicans over the last few years as a constant thorn in the side of the Obama administration. But as national money started flowing to Applegate and an endorsement of Donald Trump appeared to be weighing Issa down, the race tightened.  

  • As long as these results hold, Rep. Mike Honda, D-San Jose, will be the only incumbent in California’s 53-person congressional delegation to lose. Fellow Democrat, Ro Khanna of Fremont, finished what he started in 2014, when he first challenged Honda.

  • A reminder that California is not as uniformly progressive as it often seems: Voters upheld the death penalty as the maximum sentence for murder. Even more surprising is that a measure to speed up death penalty appeals is clinging to a two-point lead in the returns.

  • Republicans appear to have held their seats in the state Senate, beating back a Democratic supermajority. Everything hinges on a Southern California district that extends from Cypress to West Covina to Chino Hills, where Republican Ling Ling Chang, a sitting assemblywoman, is holding an almost two-point lead over Democrat Josh Newman. 

  • But in the Assembly, Republicans lost three seats, dipping below one-third of the chamber. In the Los Angeles South Bay, David Hadley was knocked out by former Democratic Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi. In Orange County, Young Kim trails former Democratic Assemblywoman Sharon Quirk-Silva. And in the Inland Empire, Eric Linder is losing to Sabrina Cervantes.

  • While no Senate incumbents of either party were defeated, five incumbent Assembly members either lost or trail. That includes the Republicans, Linder, Kim and Quirk-Silva, along with two Democrats who lost intraparty challenges. Cheryl Brown, the Inland Empire incumbent, lost to Eloise Reyes in a proxy war between environmentalists and unions that opposed Brown and Big Oil and charter schools that supported her. In the San Fernando Valley, Patty Lopez was ousted after the Democratic Party endorsed her challenger, former Democratic Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra, who also had major support from outside business interests.

  • Orange County, the traditional Republican stronghold, voted for Hillary Clinton for president. According to The Orange County Register, the county hadn’t supported a Democrat for president since the Great Depression. That result reflects a consistent slide in Republican registration in the county, which has persisted for decades.

  • Speaking of Orange County, Democratic Congresswoman Loretta Sanchez lost her home county in the U.S. Senate race by 9.6 points. Sanchez has represented Orange County in Congress since she was first elected in 1996.

  • And speaking of the U.S. Senate race, more that 1.1 million people sat it out. The race made headlines after the June primary, when no Republicans advanced to the general election — a byproduct of the state’s relatively new primary system where the top two candidates advance regardless of party. Sanchez lost to Attorney General Kamala Harris, a fellow Democrat.

Related Articles

Alt Energy Bills Will Inflate Electric Costs

FEB. 7, 2011 By WAYNE LUSVARDI California’s elite legislators and green power industrialists got together on Feb. 3 in Sacramento

GOP Moderates Get Rebuked Again

Steven Greenhut: Republican moderates, and members of the state’s centrist business community, typically have more money than good sense as

Brown: Proverbial Weather Vane

SEPT. 10, 2010 Brownian movement in physics: The constant zigzag movement of particles in a gas or liquid, the position