Around The Capitol

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  • KQED's Political Breakdown (Scott Shafer and Marisa Lagos): Politico's Carla Marinucci on primary results and Warren's departure (2020-03-05)
  • Capitol Weekly Podcast (John Howard and Tim Foster): Paul Mitchell on the departure of Elizabeth Warren and what's next in the presidential (2020-03-05)
  • KQED's Political Breakdown (Scott Shafer and Marisa Lagos): Former Obama adviser Dan Pfeiffer and Paul Mitchell on the primary election (2020-02-13)
  • Look West (Assembly Democratic Caucus): Assembly member Buffy Wicks and her husband, Giffords Executive Director Peter Ambler, as they discuss their efforts to prevent gun violence in California and nationwide, and how this work brought them together. (2020-02-13)
  • Then There's California (Senate Democratic Caucus): Senate Majority Leader Bob Hertzberg (2020-02-11)
  • Political Breakdown (Scott Shafer @ KQED): episode five of the eight-part series on Jerry Brown (2020-02-09)
  • KQED's Political Breakdown (Scott Shafer and Marisa Lagos): New Hampshire primary and data guru Paul Mitchell on the California primary (2020-02-06)
  • Capitol Weekly Podcast (John Howard and Tim Foster): Granite State native Steve Maviglio on the New Hampshire primary (2020-02-06)

The Nooner for Saturday, March 7, 2020, presented by SYASL Partners

  • Ballot status
  • Election updates
  • March 3 primary - a good thing? Paul Mitchell thinks so.
  • Cakeday and classifieds

Happy Saturday! What a week it has been. I finally slept a few hours last night, although clearly not enough.


  • Ballots counted: 6,459,601
  • Unprocessed ballots:
    • Vote-by-mail: 2,497,738
    • Provisional: 344,587
    • Conditional (late) voter registration: 165,848
    • Other (i.e. damaged ballots): 239,110
    • Total unprocessed: 3,247,283

Basically, two-thirds of ballots cast have been counted. Up to one-third of (or even more) ballots remain, depending on the validity rates of those unprocessed and how many have not been reported. For example, Alameda County last updated their number on 3/4/2020 2:17 a.m., the morning after election night. Under the law, there are three days of mail-in ballot receipts since.

Here's what they reported after a long night of ballot counting:

  • Vote-by-mail: 198,000
  • Provisional: 35,000
  • Conditional (late) voter registration: 17,000
  • Other (i.e. damaged ballots): 0
  • Total unprocessed: 250,000

Clearly, these are dartboard numbers.

I'm not trying to pick on Alameda as there are lots of counties like that. They are just first alphabetically. Thirty-four counties, including here in Sacramento, haven't updated their unprocessed numbers since Election Night.

The point is that we're flying blind.

While I'm sure some of you were wondering if I was paying attention to results, I decided to wait until today to write on many of the races until the final day when ballots postmarked on Tuesday could be received. Even now, it's too early to forecasts many races.

Things are much different from we did those Election Night live blogs until 2am. Election Night is just not relevant in California anymore.

Here are the closest races.

Only 27 more days for counties to count...ugh!

A FEW ELECTION UPDATES: Current results can be found on this Secretary of State's page.

  • Orange County congressionals: With so many ballots outstanding, it's not possible yet to judge the chances for Republicans to recapture four seats flipped by Dems in 2018. Of the four (CA39CA45CA48CA49), only Rep. Mike Levin (D) in CA49 is over 50%, although I would not read too much into that at this point of ballot-counting.
  • CA08 (San Bernardino High Desert): To the dismay of Minutemen everywhere, former Assembly member Tim Donnelly (R) will not be advancing. In the race to succeed Paul Cook (R), Assembly member Jim Obernolte (R) will face engineer Chris Bubser (D) in the general.
  • CA10 (Stanislaus): Democrats are going to have an uphill battle to retain first-term Rep. Josh Harder against former Turlock councilmember Ted Howze (R) in November.
  • CA16 (Fresno-Merced): Congressman Jim Costa (D) successfully withstood the challenge from the left of Fresno councilmember Esmeralda Soria (D) and will face Kevin Cookingham (R) in November in the likely Democratic seat. In this race, there have been suggestions that Costa allies recruited Kim Williams (D) to join the race to split the progressive vote, although if you add the current votes of Soria and Williams, Cookingham would still be in the #2 spot.
  • CA21 (Kings-Kern-Fresno): First-term congressmember TJ Cox (D) looks to have a tough rematch in November against David Valadao (R).
  • CA50 (East San Diego County): In the race to succeed convicted Duncan Hunter (D), former Rep. Darrell Issa (R) leads former San Diego councilmember Carl DeMaio (R) by 3.6% for the number two spot behind Democrat Ammar Campa-Najjar.
  • CA53 (San Diego): Sara Jacobs (D) will face San Diego councilmember Georgette Gómez (D) in November in the race to succeed retiring Susan Davis (D).
  • SD05 (San Joaquin): In the big-money race to succeed Cathleen Galgiani (D), the more liberal Asm Susan Talamentes Eggman (D) easily outpaced Modesto councilmember Mani Grewal (D) and will face former Modesto mayor Jim Ridenour (R) in the general.
  • SD07 (Tri-Valley): State Senator Steve Glazer (D), a moderate, has withstood a labor-backed challenge by Marisol Rubio (D), and will face Julie Mobley (R) in November. Mobley ran a minimal campaign and Glazer will have an easy reelection in November.
  • SD13 (San Mateo): Venture capitalist and non-profit director Josh Becker (D) willl face engineer Alex Glew (R) in this safe Democratic seat in the race to succeed Jerry Hill (D).
  • SD15 (San José): Santa Clara supe Dave Cortese (D) will face attorney Ann Ravel (D) in November. They are looking to succeed term-limited Jim Beall (D).
  • SD23 (Redlands): In the race to succeed Mike Morrell (R), the November ballot will consist of Abigail Medina (D) and Rosilicie Ochoa Bogh (R).
  • SD37 (Irvine-Anaheim Hills): State Senator John M.W. Moorlach (R) is currently at 49.1%, while his two Democratic challengers combine for the rest. Irvine law professor Dave Min currently is ahead in the number 2 spot at 26.4% while Costa Mesa mayor Katrina Foley is at 24.5%.

Assembly, some locals, and more after the jump...

  • AD09 (South Sacramento-Elk Grove): Assembly member Jim Cooper (D) easily withstood a challenge from the left by small businesswoman Tracie Stafford (D) and will face retired businessman Eric Regard (D) in November. "Coop," a retired Sac County sheriff's deputy is a member of the "mod squad" of conservative Democrats.
  • AD13 (Stockton): In the race to succeed Susan Talamentes Eggman (D), the current standings among the three Democrats are Carlos Villapudua (35.1%), Kathy Miller (33.3%), and Christina Fugazi (31.6%).
  • AD25 (Hayward-Santa Clara): In November in this safe Dem district, it looks like former legislative aide Alex Lee (D) will face businessman and former Ohlone CCD trustee Bob Brunton (R). Lee has a 787-vote lead for second place over college trustee Anne Kepner (D). They hope to follow Kansen Chu, who ran for Santa Clara County supe. Lee last worked for Assembly member Evan Low (D) as a field representative, and like Low, is a member of the LGBTQ community. If Lee's lead holds, at 24, the UC Davis alum would be the youngest member elected to the Legislature since before 1980. In that year, John Lewis was elected in the general at age 25.99. If elected, Lee would be 25.5 in November. The most recent youngest was Sebastian Ridley-Thomas, who was elected in a special in 2013 at age 26. (h/t Alex Vassar)
  • AD33 (San Bernardino high desert): Former Hesperia councilmember Thurston "Smitty" Smith (R) will face Big Bear Lake councilmember Rick Herrick (R) in November in the race to succeed Jay Obernolte, who is running in CA08.
  • AD36 (Palmdale): Democrats once again have blown a chance to flip the seat currently held by Tom Lackey (R) who will face former Assembly member Steve Fox (D) in November. The seat was won by Hillary Clinton in 2016 and Gavin Newsom in 2018.
  • AD37 (Santa Barbara): In the race to succeed Monique Limón (who is running for SD19), Ventura County supe Steve Bennett (D) will face businessman Charles W. Cole (R) in this safe Dem district.
  • AD38 (Santa Clarita): It's nearly certain that Republicans will flip this seat currently held by Christy Smith (D), who proceeds herself to a May special runoff and regular November general for the full term of CA25, from which Katie Hill (D) resigned. Smith's chosen successor left the race after it was disclosed that she had flipped from Republican registration in 2019.
  • AD42 (Yucaipa): Assembly member Chad Mayes, who changed his registration from Republican to NPP last year, captured first place at 35.9% and willl face San Jacinto mayor Andrew Kotyuk (R) in November. Given that the third candidate DeniAntionette Mazingo is a Democrat and is at 30.3%, Mayes is likely to be the first NPP candidate to be elected to state office.
  • AD57 (Whittier): Democrat Lisa Calderon will almost certainly face Republican Jessica Martinez in November in the race to succeed Assembly Majority Leader n (D) in the safe Dem seat.
  • AD59 (South Los Angeles): In a district of changing demographics from black to Latino, chamber consultant Efren Martinez (D) leads Assembly member Reggie Jones-Sawyer (D) 51%-44.4%. Toward the end of the campaign, Democrats and allied groups moved late big money to protect the incumbent.
  • AD67 (Murrieta): In a hard-fought race to succeed Melissa Melendez (who is running in the special for SD28), Murrieta mayor Kelly Seyarto (R) will face business owner Jerry Carlos (D) in November in the safe Dem district. There was lots of money behind Lake Elsinore mayor Steve Manos (R), but Seyarto doubled-up on him.
  • AD68 (Irvine): In a seat Democrats are eyeing to flip, Assembly member Steve Choi (R) is currently at 45.18% and will face Irvine councilmember Melissa Fox (D) in November).
  • AD72 (Garden Grove-Westminster): Currently, former state senator Janet Nguyen (R) and Assembly member Tyler Diep (R) are headed to November. BUT, Democrat Deidre Nguyen is only 1,050 votes (1.2%) behind Diep. Orange County has at least 173,514 unprocessed ballots, but there's no way to know how many are in AD72.
  • AD73 (Dana Point): Embattled by harassment negotiations that he denies, Assembly member Bill Brough (R) has been ousted. Laguna Niguel mayor Laurie Davies (R) will face business services director Scott Rhinehart (D) in the likely GOP district in November.
  • AD77 (North San Diego): Assembly member Brian Maienschein, who switched from Republican to Democratic registration last year, looks to have followed the will of his district. He is at 56.3% and will face attorney June Yang Cutter (R) in November.
  • Los Angeles DA: With yesterday's update, incumbent Jackie Lacey fell below 50%, raising the possibility of a November runoff against George Gascón. How close is it to the 50% threshold for Lacey to avoid a runoff? 49.999%
  • Los Angeles County supe #2: The November ballot will pit LA councilman Herb Wesson against State Senator Holly Mitchell.
  • Alameda County supe #1: Bob Wieckowski is currently in 4th place and will likely be staying in the Senate until he is termed-out in 2022. That said, remember we started talking today about Alameda's reporting on ballots...
  • Santa Clara County supe #3: Assembly member Kansen Chu is leading the pack at 33.4% and will face former Sunnyvale councilmember Otto Lee in November.
  • San Bernardino County supe #1: With 65.52% of the vote, Congressman Paul Cook can relax in his final year in Congress without needing to campaign for a November runoff.
  • San Diego mayor: It looks like Assembly member Todd Gloria (41.27%) will face Scott Sherman (24.27%) in a November runoff rather than Sherman's council colleague Barbara Bry. (23.45%) Gloria will be the favorite in November as Sherman is one of the conservatives in a city that has been trending left (see AD77 above).
  • San Diego Measure C: The hotel tax to pay for the long-sought convention center expansion is currently at 64.33%. It needs two-thirds to pass.
  • San Francisco Proposition D: The "vacancy tax" that would establish a tax on vacant ground floor retail and other commercial properties at rates of between $250 and $1,000 per street-facing foot is passing at 69.62% (needs two-thirds).

EARLY PRIMARY: For Capitol Weekly, Paul Mitchell writes that the early primary was a winner as it led to presidential candidates paying attention to California unlike when the primary was in June, by which the Democratic primary will likely be essentially over.

cakedays and classifieds after the jump...


Probolsky Research


CAKEDAY: Happy birthday to Paul Bauer, Senator Andreas Borgeas, Diane Le, Liz McGuirk, Kevin Spillane, Congressman Juan Vargas, and Edgar Zazueta!



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California State University: Associate Legislative Advocate (Sacramento)

Join our team at the California State University, Office of the Chancellor, and make a difference. We are currently seeking experienced candidates for the position of Associate Legislative Advocate (Sacramento Office). To apply, visit Salary: DOE

Southern California Democratic Member of Congress seeks District Director

Southern California Democratic Member of Congress seeks District Director to oversee all operations of the district offices, including the development and implementation of policy objectives, strategies and operating plans, as well as direct all activities and staff of the district offices. This individual also serves as the primary liaison between the Congresswoman and constituents and special interest groups in the district; and, acts as an advisor for the Congresswoman on local concerns, district issues and politics, and other developments throughout the region.

Candidates should have a minimum of 3-5 years of management experience, a strong ability to provide necessary organization, leadership and motivation to manage a Congressional office; excellent oral and written communication skills; and thorough knowledge of the legislative process. Candidates should submit a cover letter, resume, and appropriate writing samples to with just “District Director” in the subject line.

Department of Water Resources – State Water Project Chief Financial Manager

The State Water Project (SWP) Chief Financial Manager (CFM) works under the direction of the Deputy Director, SWP and provides high-level policy advice to the Department of Water Resources' (DWR) Directorate and SWP senior management on matters affecting the investment of resources to improve and sustain SWP operations. Please visit the CalCareers website for instructions on how to apply:

California School Boards Association - Public Affairs & Community Engagement Rep (4 positions)

Serve as CSBA’s liaison to local schools and county boards of education, key decision makers, and the community-at-large. Execute grassroots strategies designed to build relationships with, train, and mobilize local school board members and communities to advance CSBA’s legislative and statewide ballot measure advocacy priorities. Coordinates and executes fundraising events. Positions based in the following locations: North LA/Ventura, South San Joaquin, SF Bay Area, and North Coast. Salary based on experience. Please apply at:

Senior Policy Associate (Los Angeles)

The Alliance for Children’s Rights is seeking a Senior Policy Associate to support the organization in the areas of local government advocacy, strategic planning, public education, communications, and media relations. The Senior Policy Associate will be focused primarily on systemic change relevant to children living in foster care and in poverty in Los Angeles County. The Senior Policy Associate engages in legislative and regulatory advocacy, litigation, and communication efforts ensuring successful implementation of statewide reforms in Los Angeles County and assisting in the development and implementation of systemic solutions specific to Los Angeles County. This position is housed in our main office, located in the City of Los Angeles.

The Alliance’s Policy Program is based in Sacramento and works with Alliance program staff to identify and track child welfare practices that adversely impact our clients and helps to establish and implement responses to those practices which include legislative and regulatory advocacy, impact litigation and other reform efforts. A Bachelor of Arts is required, or a Master of Public Policy Administration or J.D. is preferred. For additional information on responsibilities, required experience, abilities, qualifications and application process, please visit our website:

The McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific

In addition to a well-respected JD, the McGeorge School of Law, University of the Pacific, offers the Master of Public Administration (MPA) and the Master of Public Policy (MPP) degrees. Both full-time students and those earning a professional degree while working succeed in the program. Our focus on the interconnections of law, policy, management, and leadership provides unique competencies for your success. Students gain a foundation in statutory interpretation and regulatory processes critical to governance. Learn at a beautiful campus three miles from the State Capitol: or

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For 30 Years PDI has been California’s premier data vendor. Now, you can get live online trainings on the newest PDI software every week: