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Governor sets special elections for 2 vacant Senate seats

January 16, 2019

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Gov. Gavin Newsom has set special elections to fill two state Senate seats vacated when the sitting senators advanced to higher offices.

Newsom announced Tuesday the primary elections will be March 26 and the general elections June 4.

They are for the seats formerly held by Democrat Ricardo Lara, who was elected insurance commissioner, and Republican Ted Gaines, who won a seat on the Board of Equalization.

Runoffs won’t be needed if any candidate wins more than half the vote in March. Otherwise, the top two vote-getters will advance, no matter their political party.

Gaines represented the vast 1st Senate District, which stretches from the Sacramento suburbs to Lake Tahoe and the Oregon border.

Lara represented the 33rd Senate District in southeast Los Angeles County.

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