The people of the 25th Congressional district in California voted for a Republican Tuesday in a special election to fill a seat left open when Katie Hill (D) resigned, last November. This was a new-style election, conducted almost entirely by mail-in ballots, and valid ballots are still arriving and being counted, so long as they have a postmark for Tuesday or earlier. The candidates: Christy Smith (D) and Mike Garcia (R). The winner? Garcia.
The 25th district sits north of the city of Los Angeles, including parts of Simi Valley and the San Fernando Valley.
Hill resigned as its representative in the face of an ethics probe arising from a bizarre sex scandal involving both a campaign aide and a Congressional aide of Hill’s. That scandal, and the intensity of coverage, may have doomed Smith.
But then, the 25th is an area historically friendly to Republicans and conservatives. Before Hill, it was represented by Steve Knight. Knight was (like Garcia) a conventional conservative in most respects.
The Thing to Know:
Unless there is an unexpected surge of Smith votes in the late-arriving ballots, Garcia’s victory comes with a surprisingly wide margin, 56% to 44%. The phrase “Red Wave” immediately began to trend on twitter.