Two presidential campaign political surveys were recently released from the Golden State, which, on Super Tuesday, will determine how 415 first ballot votes will be cast at the Democratic National Convention. The first, from Tulchin Research (1/3-10; 2,000 CA likely Democratic primary voters) sees Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) topping former Vice President Joe Biden 28-24% with Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) capturing 12% support. In an extrapolated model of the projected vote, it is likely that all three candidates would qualify for delegate apportionment.
Survey USA conducted their study less than a week later. Here, S-USA (1/14-16; 565 CA likely Democratic primary voters) finds Mr. Biden holding a 30-20-20% advantage over Sens. Sanders and Warren. This model clearly projects that all three would qualify for delegate apportionment. The two polls are relatively equivalent in reliability. While the Tulchin poll has a much larger respondent sample, the S-USA methodology featured live interviews.
The way back to Congress might be even more difficult that former US Rep. Steve Knight (R) had imagined. Attracting only 8% of the county party member vote, the Los Angeles County Republican Central Committee awarded the official party endorsement to Iraq War veteran and Defense contractor Mike Garcia for the special election scheduled for March 3rd, a vote concurrent with the California presidential primary and statewide primary.
Mr. Knight, a former state Senator and Assemblyman, lost the congressional seat in 2018 to Democrat Katie Hill who has since resigned the seat because of a sex scandal. Mr. Knight was twice elected to Congress. Democrats, despite a large field of candidates, are coalescing behind freshman state Assemblywoman Christy Smith (D-Newhall) and will attempt to win the seat outright on March 3rd by helping her reach the 50% plateau. Mr. Garcia, who has already raised close to $1 million for the special election campaign, was viewed as the more energetic and aggressive candidate by the vast majority of voting Republican committee members.
We know that Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) has resigned his seat after pleading guilty to one campaign finance violation. Additionally, Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) has said he will not call a special election to fill the new vacancy. This means the seat will remain without a Representative until next year. That being the case, Survey USA for the San Diego Union-Tribune polled the district (1/9-12; 512 CA-50 likely voters) and found Democrat Ammar Campa-Najjar leading the field with 26%, which is not surprising because the four polled Republicans split the dominant party vote.
In second place is former Congressman Darrell Issa (R) with 21% and former San Diego City Councilman and radio talk show host Carl DeMaio following closely with 20%. State Sen. Brian Jones (R-Santee) is fourth with 12%. Under the California election system, the top two March 3rd regular primary finishers, regardless of political party affiliation, will advance to the November 3rd general election.
Convicted California Rep. Duncan Hunter (R-Alpine) announced that he will leave office on January 13th, thus beginning a long vacancy for the San Diego County anchored 50th Congressional District. Mr. Hunter pledged to resign when he plead guilty to one charge of violating campaign finance law. After Mr. Hunter’s announcement, Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) stated that he will not call a special election to fill seat, thus leaving the district without representation for the balance of this year.
The timing of Mr. Hunter’s resignation does not legally permit the Governor to schedule the special concurrently with the regular California primary on March 3rd, as he did in the 25th District when then-Rep. Katie Hill (D) resigned. Without the concurrent primary option, the Governor has decided not to proceed with a special election. A similar situation may be happening in New York where Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) has still not scheduled an election to replace resigned Rep. Chris Collins (R). The other three vacancies, one each in California, Maryland, and Wisconsin, all have special election schedules.
In what could result in a delegate split among multiple candidates at the Democratic National Convention, the new Capitol Weekly California survey (1/1-9; 1,053 CA likely Democratic primary voters) gives such a conclusion more credence. It finds Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) taking a slight 24-21-20-11% lead over Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA), former Vice President Joe Biden, and South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg in the delegate rich Golden State primary (415 first ballot delegate votes) scheduled for Super Tuesday, March 3rd. To qualify for at-large delegate apportionment, candidates must secure 15% of the statewide vote.
Should this poll be an accurate prelude to the California primary, all four of these candidates could qualify for delegate apportionment and several more could add convention votes from the any of the state’s 53 congressional districts.
Eight states will host their 2020 primary elections in March, meaning they will feature a full ballot to compliment the presidential race. Voters will select a full slate of nominees in Alabama, Arkansas, California, Illinois, Mississippi, North Carolina, Ohio, and Texas on March 3, 10, or 17th. This means, at the end of March, nominees could be fully chosen for six Senate races and 151 congressional districts. It is possible, should no candidate reach the minimum nomination percentage in various states featuring a qualifying figure, that run-offs could be held in some Alabama, Mississippi, North Carolina, and Texas contests.
All of the aforementioned states have completed their candidate filing deadlines with the exception of Mississippi. There, candidacies become official on January 10th. West Virginia and Kentucky candidates will file on January 25th and 28th, respectively for May 12th and May 19th primary elections.
The US Census Bureau officers released their latest population projections in order to measure national population growth for the period between July 1, 2018 and July 1, 2019. The results find the national rate of growth slowing to 0.5%, mostly as a result of decreased immigration. The peak period for the decade came during the July 1, 2014 – July 1, 2015 period when the growth rate registered 0.73%.
With these numbers come the ability to project which states will gain and lose congressional seats in 2020 reapportionment. The national reapportionment will be calculated and announced after the 2020 census is completed. The states will receive their congressional seat quota a year from now, with a release typically coming during the period between Christmas and New Year’s.
If current projections prove correct, Texas looks to gain three seats, Florida two, with Arizona, Colorado, Montana, North Carolina, and Oregon each slated to gain one. The losing states look to be Alabama, California, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and West Virginia.
If these projections prove true, California will lose a seat for the first time in history. It’s also realistic that the actual totals could yield a two-seat loss for Illinois or New York, and possibly both. Right now, it appears ten congressional seats will change states, but that number could grow. Usually, the actual numbers tend to differ slightly from the early published projections.
Yet another current California Democratic presidential nomination poll finds multiple candidates fighting for a share of the state’s 416-member first ballot delegate contingent. Change Research (12/6-10; 862 CA likely Democratic primary voters) sees Sen. Bernie Sanders (I-VT) topping the field with 26% preference. Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) and former Vice President Joe Biden closely follow with 23 and 19%, while South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg knocks on the door of delegate apportionment with 12% support.
A four-way split of the large Golden State block would go a long way toward ensuring that more than one vote will be taken at the Democratic National Convention for the first time since 1952.
More released survey research projects that the California Democratic primary, slated for Super Tuesday March 3rd, is evolving into a contest where four candidates will receive votes from the large 416 first ballot delegate contingent. A new Capitol Weekly study (12/3-7; 599 CA likely Democratic primary voters) sees Sen. Elizabeth Warren leading the pack with 23% support, as Sen. Bernie Sanders and former Vice President Joe Biden follow with 19% apiece. South Bend Mayor Pete Buttigieg places fourth with 14%.
If this were the final vote, and assuming that Buttigieg reaches 15%, the delegate apportionment would give Sen. Warren approximately 126 first ballot delegate votes, Sanders and Biden would each earn 104, and Buttigieg would be awarded 82 votes.
Already, we have a general election pairing in California. In 2018, Democrat T.J. Cox upset then-Rep. David Valadao (R) by a scant 826-vote margin and now the men will square off again next year. No other candidate filed this week, so only the two of them will appear on the March 3rd jungle primary ballot. Regardless of how the duo finishes in the qualifying election, both will advance to the general under California’s primary election law.
Former Tulare County Democratic Party chairman Ruben Macareno announced that he would enter the race as a NPP candidate (No Party Preference), but he did not file as the deadline passed. Thus, we see the unusual one-on-one pairing for both the jungle primary and the general election. Another close contest is expected in this rural district that stretches from Fresno to Bakersfield.
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