CA-48: Avoiding the Shutout
The last minute entry of former state Assemblyman and ex-Orange County Republican Party chairman Scott Baugh into the congressional jungle primary against veteran Rep. Dana Rohrabacher (R-Costa Mesa), while Democrats have eight candidates leads to a situation where two Republicans could conceivably qualify for the general election, thus shutting out the Democrats. Another significant Republican, home builder Stelian Onufrei, is pledging to spending $500,000 to boost his candidacy. If this actually happens, the chances of two Republicans finishing 1-2 will be greatly diminished.
Change Research conducted a poll for Fight Back CA PAC (3/4-6; 757 CA-48 registered voters; 688 likely jungle primary voters) and found that Mr. Rohrabacher would lead the large group at 35% followed by two largely unknown Democrats, businessman Henry Rouda and architect Laura Oatman, who have 10% apiece. Mr. Baugh and biomedical company CEO Hans Keirstead (D) follow with 7%, apiece. When drilling down further, the pollsters provided background information on the candidates, and here the possibility of a Democratic shutout proved possible. When respondents received more information, the breakdown was 29-13-12-10% with Rohrabacher, Keirstead, Baugh, and Rouda finishing in consecutive order. Thus, the June 5th jungle primary will be a curious and interesting affair.
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