California Senate Race Leaves Democrats Divided And Displeased

( – The race for the California Senate seat that was held by the late Sen. Dianne Feinstein has left Democrats divided after the March 5th primary.

Democrats in the state are displeased with Democratic California Rep. Adam Schiff, who, along with Republican Steve Garvey, won the state’s open primary, where the top two vote-getters, regardless of party, advance to the November general election.

The Democrats are mad because Schiff and pro-Schiff super PACs pumped money into the race by buying ads supporting Garvey in hopes of pushing him past Schiff’s Democratic challengers, California Rep. Katie Porter, and California Rep. Barbara Lee. Schiff felt that in a state that leans Democrat, he would stand a better chance of winning the general election in November if he were running against the Republican, a former Major League Baseball player who played for the San Diego Padres and the Los Angeles Dodgers. In two of the last three U.S. Senate races, the Republicans have not had a candidate advance to the general election in California, and a Republican has not held a Senate seat in the state since 1988.

Porter has not yet conceded and has accused “an onslaught of billionaires” of rigging the election. During a speech on March 5th, she accused Schiff of spending more money promoting Garvey than he did on “his own campaign.” While critical of Schiff, many have also criticized Porter for calling the election rigged, with California Sen. Alex Padilla calling the idea the election was rigged “ridiculous.”

Lee said the move by Schiff “lacks integrity.”

While some Democrats are critical of Schiff’s decision, others are supportive.

Assistant professor of political science at Cal Poly Pomona, Jarred Cuellar, called Schiff’s move to support Garvey “critical” to the outcome of the race, saying that “he played smart politics.”

The first U.S. Senate race in California since 2016, the winner of the November general election will also serve the remainder of Feinstein’s term through January 2025, when the new six-year term will begin.

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