Evan Low in neck-and-neck Bay Area House rep race

Evan Low in neck-and-neck Bay Area House rep race
via California Assembly Democrats, Joe Simitian / YouTube
Carl Samson
26 days ago
The race for the chance to represent California’s District 16 in the House has come down to the wire, with the outcome hinging on a handful of votes and potential recounts.
Key points:
  • Former San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo, who has led the race since Super Tuesday, will advance to November’s general election.
  • Assemblymember Evan Low and Santa Clara County Supervisor Joe Simitian remain in a tight battle for second place, separated only by a few votes. 
  • Given the close margins, a recount will likely be initiated by the candidate finishing third.
The details:
  • The race is for the coveted seat of retiring U.S. Rep. Anna Eshoo in District 16, which covers parts of Santa Clara and San Mateo counties.
  • As of Tuesday night, Simitian led Low by a mere two votes: 30,234 to 30,232. Liccardo, who leads the pack by 8,000 votes, has secured his spot in the general election.
  • Both Simitian and Low’s campaigns are “curing ballots,” which involves addressing issues such as missing signatures. Some 1,225 ballots reportedly have signature discrepancies and both candidates must correct them before April 4, the day votes are certified. 
  • Due to the razor-thin margins, a recount will likely be initiated by the candidate ending up in third place. Recounts in California must begin within seven days after a request is submitted, with costs — which reportedly can reach up to $320,000 in Santa Clara County alone — shouldered by the requester unless the recounts alter the election outcome.
  • In the rare event of a tie, state election code 8142 allows both Simitian and Low to advance to the general election, joining Liccardo.
  • If elected to the seat in November, Low, who made history as the youngest openly LGBTQ+ mayor in the country at 26, would become the Bay Area’s first openly gay representative in Washington, D.C.
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