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SB 29 Ballots Strongly Favored Correa

Posted by Chris Nguyen on February 5, 2015

Andrew Do and Lou Correa

New Supervisor Andrew Do (R-Westminster) and former Senator Lou Correa (D-Santa Ana), the runner-up in the First Supervisorial District Special Election

In 2014, SB 29, authored by then-Senator Lou Correa, was signed into law, allowing absentee ballots to arrive via USPS up to three days after Election Day (provided they were either postmarked by Election Day or not postmarked).  There were 683 of these ballots (562 arrived on Wednesday, 120 arrived on Thursday, and 1 lonely ballot arrived on Friday) in the First Supervisorial District Special Election (the first election held since SB 29 came into effect on January 1, 2015).  As our readers all know, Andrew Do defeated Correa by 43 votes.

Correa led Do by 6% on the SB 29 ballots.  Correa had led Do by just 1% in early absentees while Do led Correa by 5% among late (but still arriving by Election Day) absentee ballots.

Many Republicans breathed a sigh of relief that SB 29 ballots did not put Correa over the top against Do, but there remain serious implications for Republicans in future elections.  The First Supervisorial District was simply a trial run that demonstrated that SB 29 ballots do favor Democrats.  In Orange County, Vietnamese absentee ballots can still overpower SB 29 ballots, but in other parts of California, SB 29 ballots will proceed unimpeded by Vietnamese absentee ballots.  It would behoove Republican lawmakers to try to reform SB 29.  Failing that, Republican campaigns will need to learn how to win over SB 29 ballots.

4 Responses to “SB 29 Ballots Strongly Favored Correa”

  1. Steve Frank said

    Chris: I would like to use your story on SB 29 votes for the California Political News and Views–full credit of course. OK?

    Steve Frank 805-795-1271

  2. TheMarshallPlan said

    This is a probably the California Republican Party has been facing for the last 20 years, but has become a huge problem since about 2002. Whether it’s been statewide, Tom McClinotck in 2002 and Steve Cooley 2010, or local, Lou Correa winning in 2006 and Norby losing in 2010, Democrats have trumpeted us at the ballot box with late absentee and provisional ballots. Last November, in all the close elections and seats Republicans picked up but one, the Republican candidate suffered a significant decline from the election night and day after election night results. It’s at the point that unless the Republican has at the minimum 53%-55% of the vote, I think they’re going to end of losing due to the late vote.

    Maybe this will finally wake the party up and force them to continue to fix the basic infrastructure of the party, from the county level up to the state level, so they can eventually reestablish themselves in a segment of the GOV that they used to dominate.

    • Linda said

      The bigger question is when will the GOP finally look at the reports that the Election Integrity Project (EIP) has been making available for 4 years. The reality is that California in not yet in compliance with the 2002 federal law that requires states to have a statewide voter database that makes it possible to immediately identify a voter (both alive and deceased) that is being duplicated in their own or neighboring counties. California’s noncompliance with state and federal laws regarding voter list maintenance and polling place integrity is contributing to the problem of potential fraud via use of VBM and Provisional ballots.

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