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  1. #1
    Senior Member JohnDoe2's Avatar
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    Aug 2008
    PARADISE (San Diego)

    Republican Vidak leads key California state Senate race

    July 24, 2013

    Republican Vidak leads key California state Senate race

    Republican Andy Vidak emerged early Wednesday with a nearly 6,000-vote lead in a hotly contested special election on Tuesday to fill a Central Valley Senate seat put in play by a Democratic senator's abrupt departure in February.

    With 100 percent of the district's precincts reporting but thousands of late mail-in and provisional ballots yet to be counted, Vidak tallied 54 percent of the vote to Democrat Leticia Perez's 46 percent.

    In an interview with the Associated Press late Tuesday, Perez said she was hopeful she would overtake Vidak in the coming days as more votes are counted. Vidak told the AP he was "cautiously optimistic" his margin would hold through the vote tally in Fresno, Kings, Kern and Tulare counties.

    Former senator Michael Rubio had been considered a moderate Democratic with a potentially pivotal role to play in overhauling the California Environmental Quality Act. But his surprise announcement that he was leaving the Legislature for a job with Chevron threw those plans into turmoil and ignited a fierce competition for the 16th Senate District seat.

    Supporters poured millions into both campaigns, with independent organizations also flexing their muscle. Perez enjoyed substantial support from entities funded by powerful interests that include telecommunications firms, energy corporations and Indian tribes, as well as from labor unions. The California Association of Realtors backed Vidak.

    If Vidak's leads holds up, the Democratic advantage in the Senate will be whittled to the bare minimum needed for the two-thirds supermajority secured in November elections. Democrats would control 27 seats, although they could bolster their majority if they hold the vacant seat that Democratic senator Curren Price recently departed for a spot on the Los Angeles City Council. The primary for Price's former seat is scheduled for September 17.

    The winner will serve the remainder of Rubio's term, which expires in 2014. The current 16th Senate District has evaporated, courtesy of new lines drawn by a redistricting commission in 2010, so whoever wins will likely seek re-election in the newly forged 14th Senate district.

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  2. #2
    Super Moderator Newmexican's Avatar
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    May 2005
    Heart of Dixie

    By: Katy Grimes
    7/24/2013 12:18 PM

    This article originally appeared on

    As of 6:00 a.m., Republican Andy Vidak was leading Democratic challenger Leticia Perez, by more than 6,000 votes for the empty seat in the Senate District 16 runoff race.

    Congratulations were already coming in to Vidak on his Facebook page.
    Vidak, a 47-year old, third-generation Republican farmer from Hanford, seemed to win 51.9 percent of the vote in the special election in May over Bakersfield Democrat Leticia Perez for the Senate seat vacated by former Sen. Michael Rubio, D-Bakersfield.

    Vidak needed 50 percent-plus-one votes to avoid a runoff against Perez.
    But a large number of provisional ballots magically appeared after Perez had already conceded the election causing Vidak to lose his 51 percent edge, and a runoff election was scheduled for July 23.

    Democratic supermajority

    Central Valley Senate District 16 has been a crucial one for Democrats in the Capitol. They needed it to keep their solid two-thirds supermajority that allows them to raise fees and taxes without any Republican votes. Even with a Vidak win, Democrats would still control 27 seats in the Senate. But they are worried about the seat recently vacated by Sen. Curren Price who won his race for Los Angeles City Council. That special election will take place in September.

    July runoff

    “With 100% of precincts reporting, the Hanford-area grower holds a nearly 6,000 vote lead over Kern County Supervisor Leticia Perez in the contentious 16th State Senate race,” 23 ABC News in Bakersfield just reported.

    The California Secretary of State is reporting Vidak has 54 percent of the vote, with a total of 39,085 votes. Perez has 46 percent of the vote, with a total of 33,252 votes.

    Kern County and Fresno County were where the majority of the provisional ballots appeared in the special election. In yesterday’s election, Kern County reported 48.1 percent for Vidak, and 58.9 percent for Perez. Fresno reported 45.9 percent for Vidak to 54.1 percent for Perez. However, Vidak Kings and Tulare Counties with large margins.

    If it’s not close, they can’t cheat

    This reminds me of talk show host Hugh Hewitt’s 2004 book, “If it’s not close, they can’t cheat,” about winning elections in an era when only a handful of votes can turn an election. According to Hewitt, if the results are not even close, there won’t be any question of the winner.

    CalWatchdog will update this story and the election results throughout the day.

    - See more at:

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