In the shadow of Wisconsin’s exciting election day, California’s first open primary is expected to draw a record low voter turn out today. As is usually the case here, the Presidential picks have already been decided and even though there are many other important races and ballot initiatives, the voters are apathetic for the most part.
Locally, my ballot was packed with interesting races as we are electing a new mayor (following the retirement of the incumbent who occupied the seat for eighteen years) as well as a new Congressional District 41; and a new state Senate District 31.
The race for U.S. Senate against incumbent Diane Feinstein has turned into a real sleeper as she faces twenty-three virtual unknown opponents — five from her own party, fourteen Republicans and the remainder from the Libertarian, Peace and Freedom Party and American Independent Party. In this open primary, the top two winners will proceed to the November election so it is conceivable that we could have two Democrats to pick from come November.
The new Congressional seat — CD41 — may pull out a win for the Republican in the race — John Tavaglione. He is a well-known businessman and local politician who has been a Riverside County Supervisor for twelve years. His leading opponent is a typical liberal Dem — Mark Takano — who has the backing of his party but much less name recognition and lacks the political experience that Tavaglione brings with him. There is a very good chance that we can beat Takano in November and send one more Republican to Washington next year.
I will be watching the results tonight and report back should something unpredictably interesting happen. In the meantime, you go, Wisconsin!