There was a time when you ran for office, told the voters why and then asked for their vote. California is not place any more. To the contrary, California is not that place, you set up a rigged system that leaves out many candidates in the Fall elections and then you promote your opponents.
California, of course, has a jungle primary, Top 2 system. The Top 2 vote-getters for statewide office (and others), regardless of party, advance to the November final. Given the state’s lopsided voter registration, Republicans often get locked out of the final for the U.S. Senate and for the top state positions such as Governor.
The Democrats well know that and now are engaged in deceptive practices to take full advantage of it.
For instance, Gavin Newsom, the likely primary winner, is running ads against John Cox, the likely highest voter getter among Republicans. While it is true many polls show Cox the highest among Republicans, Newsom real goal is to ensure that Cox is his November opponent. Newsom would rather run against a Republican than a Democrat in the Fall. His ads are boosting Cox’ name ID and therefore Cox’ chances of finishing in the Top 2.
The irony of all of that is that Newsom, a fierce Trump critic, may help Republicans hold the Congress if Cox is on the Fall ballot. That is so because Republican turnout would be higher in the Fall if they had someone at the top of the ticket on the Fall ballot. It also would prevent a higher than normal Latino turnout if the Latino Antonio Villaraigosa is not on the Fall ballot for Governor. Combined, all of that will help Republicans win Congressional races in California the Democrats need to take the House.
Villaraigosa, the former Los Angeles Mayor, wants to be number two in the race. He has a shadow group supporting him that is sending out mailers boosting Travis Allen – the Republican running 4th in much of the polling. That shadow group, is funded in part by liberal Michael Bloomberg ( who spent $300 million to win a 3rd terms as NYC Mayor). Their goal is to take away votes from Cox so that Villargaiso can pass Cox. Incredibly, some say they will spend a minimum of $20 million to “help” Travis Allen – that’s money Allen could never raise for himself.
The evil of all of this, of course, is Prop 14 – the Top 2 system. That has locked out all 3rd parties from the Fall ballot and cemented state majorities for Democrats. Until that is repealed you can expect more of these games – and Democrat majorities long with the higher taxes that will bring.
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