Headline of the Day

Democrats are on the verge of losing three California House seats they grabbed from Republicans two years ago, and the late surge of support that propelled them to victory in 2018 so far has not shown up.

It’s part of a trend for Democrats, who took control of the House in the “blue wave” election of 2018. This year, the party is on track to lose seats nationally and enter Joe Biden’s presidency with a shrunken majority.

Three Democrats who flipped GOP-held seats in the blue wave, Reps. Gil Cisneros and Harley Rouda of Orange County and TJ Cox of Fresno, were all behind on election day and have seen the gap grow, not shrink, since then. Another Democrat in a closely watched race, Assembly member Christy Smith of Santa Clarita (Los Angeles County), held an election night lead, only to quickly lose it to GOP Rep. Mike Garcia.

All the races remain close with tens of thousands of ballots still uncounted. Garcia, for example, held only a 432-vote edge over Smith on Sunday.

But there’s still plenty of concern from Democrats, not only from party leaders but also from the candidates themselves.


… Democrats see Rouda as their most endangered California incumbent. Rouda’s district, which includes a number of upscale beach towns in Orange County, had elected Republicans for decades before Rouda ousted GOP Rep. Dana Rohrabacher in 2018. Republicans still hold a 5-percentage-point registration edge.

Orange County Supervisor Michelle Steel held a 6,973-vote lead over Rouda on Sunday, more than double what she had three days before. There were only about 33,000 votes left to count in the entire county.

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