California Votes: LIVE Updates

– – –  11:55 p.m. – – – Good Night

Okay, it’s late, and the county isn’t going to be finishing these ballots any time soon. Off to bed, and thanks for following along!

– – –  11:03 p.m. – – – UPDATE: CA Governor and U.S. Senate races

Hi there–Kempa here again. Two updates:

Gavin Newsom’s challenger in November will be Republican John Cox. Do remember that Newsom wanted to run against a GOP candidate in November. You can read more about that at CALMatters.

Dianne Feinstein’s challenger will be fellow Democrat Kevin de León. I believe this will be a fascinating race. De León almost took the state party’s nomination a couple months back. And now that he’s passed through the jungle primary, folks with money won’t feel like they’ll be wasting it on him. Game on, Senator Feinstein.

– – –  10:40 p.m. – – – UPDATE: CA Governor and U.S. Senate races

[Written by VOICES: River City resident curmudgeon Anthony Siino]

The ‘winners’ of Tuesday’s state primary election seemed predetermined, but under the relatively new system that sends the top two vote-getters, regardless of party, to the November general, all eyes remain locked on the contest for second place.

For California governor, it’s a clear lead for former San Francisco mayor (and current Lt. Governor) Gavin Newsom, resting comfortably at 34.7 percent of the vote at 25 percent of precincts reporting. Newsom’s total sits nearly nine points above his most threatening competitor, Republican John Cox, who so far has received 26 percent of the vote.

For U.S. senator, Democrat Dianne Feinstein seems to have little trouble coasting toward the November runoff and, eventually, her sixth term, carrying 43.6 percent of the vote with 27 percent of precincts reporting. Her nearest competitor, former state senator and senate president pro tempore Kevin de León, leads the rest of the straggling pack at 10.2 percent, nearly tied with Republican James Bradley’s 9.6 percent. While the current proposition seems to be between a Democrat vs. a Democrat or a Democrat vs. a Republican, it’s hard to imagine either result coming to any end other than another term for the incumbent Feinstein.

– – –  8:35 p.m. – – – UPDATE: on local Sacramento county and city elections

Sacramento City Council District 7:

Sacramento City Council District 1:

Sacramento City Council District 5:

Sacramento County Sheriff:

Sacramento County District Attorney: – – –  7:14 p.m. – – – Sacramento county and city elections to watch

Here in Sacramento County (and city) are the major races to watch this evening:

Sacramento County District Attorney

  • Anne Marie Schubert (Incumbent)
  • Noah Phillips (Challenger)

In the off chance you’ve been living under a rock, this is a national level race. Schubert has been under intense fire in this race ever since the public began pushing her office to indict the officers involved in the March 18 killing of Stephon Clark, a 22-year-old unarmed Black man, by Sacramento Police officers in his grandmother’s backyard.

But this race hit a profound plot twist when Schubert garnered positive national attention over the arrest of the man alleged to be the East Area Rapist/Golden State Killer. Huge implications come with this race between Schubert and challenger Noah Phillips, who is considered a lesser-of-two-evils compared to the incumbent.

Sacramento County Sheriff

  • Scott Jones (Incumbent)
  • Milo Fitch (Challenger)

There are two more challengers in this race, but the two worth watching are Jones and Fitch. Fitch is the Phillips to Jones’s Schubert, running against the incumbent on a social justice platform dedicated to dealing with police brutality and accountability.

Sacramento City Council – District 5

  • Jay Schenirer (Incumbent)
  • Tamika L’Ecluse (Challenge)

This is by far the most interesting city council race, and if I had to guess, it’s the one most likely to result in a challenger win. L’Ecluse has built a strong grassroots following in Oak Park and beyond to take on Schenirer, who has dealt with hits to his social capital over donations to his nonprofit while in office.

Sacramento City Council – District 7

  • Rick Jennings, II (Incumbent)
  • Tristan Brown (Challenger)

This race has three major candidates, but for my money I’m guessing Brown has the best chance at forcing a November runoff. Jennings, like Schenirer, never revoked his endorsement for Schubert in the District Attorney’s race, and a share of his incumbents aren’t happy.

A bold strategy, given the racial justice climate in Sacramento. Let’s see how it pans out for both incumbents.

– – – 6:40 p.m. – – – California state and federal election exit polls – top three races

Earlier today, Capitol Weekly published some preliminary exit poll numbers for state level races using data from Paul Mitchell’s Political Data, Inc. Here are the top candidates in the three major state races (Keep in mind the top two in each race will partake in a runoff in November. If you want to see ALL the state/federal race exit polls, check out Capitol Weekly. Also, follow the scary-smart Paul Mitchell on Twitter.):


  1. Gavin Newsom (D) – Lieutenant Governor: 35%
  2. John H. Cox (R) – Businessman/Taxpayer Advocate: 22%
  3. Travis Allen (R) – California Assemblyman/Businessman: 12%
  4. Antonio Villaraigosa (D) – Public Policy Advisor: 9%
  5. John Chiang (D) – California State Treasurer: 8%

A lot of state political commentators were prognosticating that the November runoff would include two Democrats, but a couple of the more numbers-oriented pollsters have been saying that eventually the right would rally around someone. The governor’s race is a profoundly large pool of candidates, so I wouldn’t have been surprised either way.

Do keep in mind that Republicans have over-performed in early mail-in voting. I’m interested to see how this pans out tonight.


  1. Eleni Kounalakis (D) – Businesswoman/Economic Advisor: 24%
  2. Ed Hernandez (D) – State Senator/Businessman: 14%
  3. Cole Harris (R) – Father/Entrepreneur/Businessman: 13%

This was another race with a wide pool of candidates. But while the governor’s race has had a frontrunner all along in Newsom, this one was wide open for ages.


  1. Dianne Feinstein (D) – United States Senator: 41%
  2. Kevin de León (D) – California Senator: 10%
  3. James P. Bradley (R) – Chief Financial Officer: 6%

De León almost, amazingly, almost wrested the state Democratic nomination at the California party convention a couple of months back. But as it landed, no one received the nod. Given Feinstein’s name recognition, de León will have a huge uphill battle if he ends up getting to battle her in a November runoff.

– – – 5:45 p.m. – – – Hello.

Hi there. Dave Kempa here, editor with VOICES: River City. I’ll be gracing this page with updates on tonight’s California elections.

That likely won’t ramp up until polls close at 8 p.m. tonight, but there are a few things worth sharing in the lead-up to the ballots rolling in. To begin, some context and resources:

  • The California Primary as Gold Rush Politics This is a fantastic, informative piece by Miriam Pawel in the New York Times explaining how traditional East Coast party politics never fared so well out here in California.
  • Sacramento’s local election results – Stick around here for those or, for raw data, check out…
  • Sac County website’s election page – Starting at 8 p.m., you can follow the election numbers as they roll in on the county page. It’s ugly, but it gets the job done.
  • Other resources:

As always, you can follow me on Twitter at @kempadimes. I’ll also try to stay active with the @voicesrivercity handle, but no promises.

Polls close in 2 hours and 15 minutes. Happy voting!


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Dave Kempa
Editor at VOICES: River City
Dave Kempa is the founder and editor of VOICES: River City.