Last Tuesday was special, in that there were nine special elections held that day. The Golden State led the way with four contests, including the first round in the 22nd Congressional District.
The 22nd district is an intriguing battleground for an open election right now. Positioned just outside of Fresno, Hispanics make up a plurality of residents and Trump won it by five points in 2020. After Rep. Devin Nunes resigned to become CEO of Trump’s new media company, six candidates threw their hats in the ring to fill out his term before the latest round of redistricting makes this seat obsolete.
Republican candidate Connie Conway is set to come out on top with 34.8%. With 81% of precincts in so far, Conway is also the only candidate we’re sure will advance to the top two run-off on June 7th. Conway spent six years as a State Rep, including a stint as House Minority Leader, before being named the USDA State Director by the Trump Administration.
Currently in second place with 19.69% is Democrat Lourin Hubbard, an operations manager at the California Department of Water Resources. It remains to be seen whether Republican Matt Stoll or Democrat Eric Garcia can pass Hubbard and make the run-off.
Additionally, California held contests for three open state assembly seats. In the 11th district, Democrat Lori Wilson ran unopposed to replace retiring incumbent Jim Frazier in this Sacramento area seat.
The 62nd district, which sits in western Los Angeles, is a heavily Democratic seat which attracted four Dem hopefuls. Lawndale Mayor Robert Pullen-Miles and activist Tina McKinnor will both advance to the June 7th run-off with 37.21% and 35.38% respectively. Pullen-Miles has the support of the former incumbent Autumn Burke, while McKinnor was endorsed by the Los Angeles Times.
Lastly, there’s the 80th district in San Diego, a majority Latino seat. The 80th is also a solidly blue district, with the two Democrats favored to finish ahead of the one Republican. With 83% of precincts in, David Alvarez sits at 38.42% while Georgette Gomez has 36.98%. Both candidates previously served on the San Diego City Council together.
Round-Up of Other Nationwide Races
A trio of State House special elections were also held in the Keystone State last night. Two of these races took place in Pittsburgh to fill the seats of new Mayor Ed Gainey and his Chief of Staff Jake Wheatley. Social worker Aerion Abney ran unopposed in Wheatley’s 19th district, while over in Gainey’s 24th district Democratic nominee Martell Covington won with 94.2%. Covington previously worked as a legislative aide in Senate Minority Leader Jay Costa’s office.
The third race occurred in southern Luzerne County to fill the vacant 116th district. County Councilman and Republican nominee Robert Schnee prevailed with 65.5%. Schnee will serve out the term of Tarah Toohill, who left the seat after being elected a county judge.
The outskirts of Atlanta were also the site of the first round of a special election to fill the recently vacated 45th State House district. Three Republicans and one Democrat competed for the right to hold this seat until November, with Republican Mitchell Kaye and Democrat James McCormick advancing to a May 3rd run-off with 41.66% and 40.47% respectively.
Up in Milwaukee, voters turned out to decide their next Mayor after Tom Barrett stepped down last December to become the Ambassador to Luxembourg. Former Council President and Acting Mayor Cavalier Johnson failed to get 50% back in February, so he and former Alderman Bob Donovan competed in a run-off. Johnson easily won, garnering 71.69% to Donovan’s 28.31%.