Credit: Mike Garcia for Congress
After Tuesday’s huge victory by Republican Mike Garcia over Democrat Christy Smith in the CA-25 special election, I joined KABC Radio’s John Phillips to discuss the results, factors in Garcia’s victory, and any takeaways looking forward to November’s general election.
Having the advantages of being a CA-25 native, experience working on the CA-25 race in 2014, and knowing most of the local political players, my observations and takeaways were probably a bit different than those of other political journalists.
Going into November, Republicans must ensure they have funding to mount a highly effective, professionally-run ballot harvesting operation, and they must have the best election attorneys in the country involved in every aspect of the process. Something I did not say on the show, but which is critical, is that Republicans push for voter rolls to be cleaned up statewide before November given that Gov. Newsom has already declared that all registered voters shall be mailed a ballot for that election.
Of course, Mike Garcia will have the advantage of running as an incumbent. If he can distinguish himself in Washington D.C. as leading on coronavirus relief for families in the district, that will be a major vote driver. Christy Smith will serve in the California State Assembly, where she has been an extremely reliable and vocal union vote, for the remainder of this session. Given her friendship with AB5 author Asm. Lorena Gonzalez and advocacy of that law, which has hurt thousands of families in CA-25, her votes there will be scrutinized for further damage to working families. Smith will have to vote the progressive line, though, or risk alienating a base that’s already fractured by the Katie Hill scandal and that never healed from a brutal 2018 Democrat congressional primary.
Listen to all of my incredible insights (yes, that’s sarcasm) here: