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Home / U.S. Senate

Schiff to face Garvey in US Senate runoff election in November

In the contest to fill U.S. Senate seat from California formerly held by the late Dianne Feinstein, the first wave of ballots from the primary election has positioned Rep. Adam Schiff, D-Burbank, as the front-runner with 36% of the vote ahead of Republican and former professional baseball player Steve Garvey’s 30%.

Schiff and Garvey will likely face off in a November runoff as vote counting from Election Day adds to the totals that came from mail-in ballots received prior to the opening of the polls, as reported by the secretary of state’s office Tuesday night. 

Rep. Katie Porter, D-Irvine, and Rep. Barbara Lee, D-Oakland, were also vying for the influential Senate seat. Porter held 15% of the vote, while Lee had 7%. 

The remaining 24 candidates secured 3% or less. With the passing of Feinstein in September, the seat opened up and attracted a slew of political hopefuls. However, Schiff, Porter, Garvey and Lee emerged as the top candidates, engaging in months of intense campaigning, marked by debates, media appearances and public engagements.

Known for his role in the impeachment of former President Donald Trump in 2020, Schiff positioned himself as a defender of democracy, ready to tackle Republican adversaries and get results for California. 

Portraying herself as an anti-corruption fighter and former consumer protection attorney, Porter targeted affordable child care, health care and housing. 

Lee, who positioned herself as the most progressive candidate, envisioned a $50 minimum wage and free public college education. 

Garvey, on the other hand, pitched himself as a common-sense conservative focused on curtailing crime, homelessness and reckless spending.

Schiff has rallied significant Democratic support, including an endorsement from over 80% of the California Democratic congressional delegation that included House Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi. His campaign contributions, totaling $31.4 million, overshadow those of his rivals, with FEC filings through Feb. 14 showing Porter at $28 million, Lee at $5 million and Garvey at $2.1 million.

Despite the financial edge, Schiff’s opponents remained resolved, with Porter directly challenging him as a “career politician” and Garvey rallying the Republican base.

Following Feinstein’s tenure of over two decades, Gov. Gavin Newsom appointed Laphonza Butler, the former president of Emily’s List, to California’s U.S. Senate seat to serve in the interim.

As reported by The Press-Enterprise

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