A First for California: No New Seats
For California, 2011 redistricting marks a number of firsts. For the first time since California earned its statehood in 1850 (except 1920, in which reapportionment did not occur), the Golden State will not see an increase to its Congressional delegation following the Census. While states like Texas, Colorado, and Georgia will each gain a few more seats in the House of Representatives, a slowing of population growth in California means that the status quo of 53 representatives will remain in place for the next ten years. Perhaps even more historic, 2011 marks the first redistricting cycle in which the power of redistricting has been granted to a brand new, voter approved organization: the California Citizens Redistricting Commission (CRC).
The California Citizens Redistricting Commission, created with the passage of Proposition 11 in 2008, was initially given the task of handling redistricting exclusively for state legislative districts (and the Board of Equalization), but later expanded to include congressional redistricting with the approval of Proposition 20 in 2010. Both Propositions had to overcome significant opposition to their passage. The commission, comprised of five Democrats, five Republicans, and four commissioners unaffiliated with either major party, was supported heavily by Governor Schwarzenegger and state Republicans, who believed maps produced by a bipartisan redistricting process would be much more favorable to the GOP than ones authored by Sacramento Democrats. Conversely, Democrats and many incumbents feared losing control of the process.
On August 15, the CRC formally approved finalized legislative redistricting plans 13-1, and the Congressional plan 12-2. A district-by-district analysis of the California Redistricting Commission’s maps illustrates the far reaching nature of the CRC’s work. The new maps drastically reshape congressional and state legislative representation in the Inland Empire. As a result of efforts by the commission to create reasonably compact districts and preserve communities of interest (and undo the bipartisan incumbent gerrymander of 2001), the new maps offer districts that are, for the most part, much more compact than their predecessors.
California’s 1st District is comprised of the northeastern portion of the state and includes large parts of the old 2nd and 4th Districts, currently represented by Wally Herger (R) and Tom McClintock (R). The new 1st District inherits the city of Susanville, and a number of parks, including Plumas, Modoc, Lassen, Tahoe National Forests, from the old 4th. From the former 2nd, the 1st includes the cities of Chico, Anderson, Magalia, Paradise and Redding as well as Klamath and Shasta National Forests.
Overwhelming rural, the GOP has a registered voter advantage of 12 points over the Democrats in the 1st, which will likely favor the Republicans in 2012. Current 1st District incumbent Mike Thompson will be running in the 5th District, where he resides. Wally Herger, the 2nd District incumbent, has announced his candidacy for the new 1st, where he will likely hold an advantage in the fall.
California’s 2nd District, stretches along the coast from Mill Valley to the California-Oregon border. Along with the coastal portions of the former 1st, the new 2nd District includes the Trinity National Forest area from the old 2nd, as well as Mill Valley, Petaluma, and Novato from the old 6th District (currently represented by Democrat Lynn C. Woolsey).
Although Wally Herger is technically the incumbent of the 2nd District, his choice to run in the 1st, and the substantial changes to the district leave the 2nd with no front runner. As an open seat with portions of heavily Democratic Marin County and the left-leaning coast, the 2nd district will be a favorable environment to the crowded Democratic field in the fall. President Obama trounced John McCain by 47 percent in the 2nd in 2008. With the Democrats holding a 27 point registration advantage over the Republicans, the new top-two primary system seems likely to produce a battle between two Democratic candidates this fall.
The 3rd District includes the area west of Sacramento and the surrounding agricultural, rural areas of Davis, Fairfield, and Susan City. The northern portion of the 3rd district reaches up into the Sacramento Valley to take in Live Oak, Yuba City, Olivehurst, and Beale Air Force Base. The new 3rd is made up of several old districts: the eastern end of the former 1st, the southern tip of the former 2nd, the western arm of the old 3rd District, Vacaville from the 7th, and Fairfield from the 10th.
While Republican Dan Lungren is the incumbent of the old 3rd District, he has opted to run in the more Republican 7th District instead. Tenth District incumbent, Democrat John Garamendi will run in the 3rd in 2012.Dubbed a Democratic leaning district by the Cook Political Report, the Democrats enjoy a 9 point registration edge over the Republicans in the 3rd district; however, given the lack of a familiar incumbent, and their modest registration advantage, this race looks likely to be close in the fall.
The 4th District, another vast rural district, follows the Sierra Nevada Mountains down the eastern border of the state. The northern tip of the 4th is marked by Truckee and the California side of Lake Tahoe, while the south is marked by Kings Canyon National Park. In between lies Mader, Mariposa, Amador, Calaveras, Alpine, Lincoln, and Roseville—along with a score of parks and forests, including Yosemite National Park and Calveras Big Tree State Park. Like most of the new districts in California, the new 4th includes parts of several old districts: the southern part of the 4th District, the eastern, rural parts of the 3rd District, the northeast section of the 19th District, and the northern part of the 21st District.
Incumbent Republican Tom McClintock, who won comfortably in 2010, and is seeking reelection in the Fourth District. Given the 16 point registration advantage held by the GOP, Rep. McClintock seems to be the favorite to win reelection in the fall.
California’s new 5th District is a mashup of the 1st and 6th Districts. From the 1st District, the new 5th inherits Napa Valley, Finley, and portions of the Hopland Indian Reservation, and from the 6th District Santa Rosa and Rohnert Park.
Although Democrat Doris Matsui is the 5th’s incumbent, the drastic changes to the district have led 1st District Democrat Mike Thompson to run here while Matsui moves to the Sixth. With a 29 percent party registration advantage in a district President Obama won by 45 points, Rep. Thompson is no doubt favored headed into the fall.
The urban 6th District, similar to the former 5th District, is centered around Sacramento. Unlike the former 5th, the 6th yields parts of Rosemont and Florin to expand to the north and west, encompassing Sacramento International Airport and Western Sacramento. The southern end of the new 6th District is marked by Cosumnes River College and the Sacramento Executive Airport with North Highlands and Mcclellan Airfield to the north.
Retiring Democrat Lynn Wollsey reside in the Sixth and Democrat Doris Matsui has opted to run here instead. Much like 5th district, the Democrats hold a strong registration advantage in the 6th (23 points) and are expected to prevail in the fall.
The 7th District remains similar to its 2010 counterpart, keeping the Sacramento County cities of Rancho Cordova, Carmichael, Fair Oaks, Citrus Heights, Orangevale, Folsom, Elk Grove, Herald, and Sloughhouse.
Republican Dan Lungren opted to run in the 7th District, but faces a competitive election. Democrats hold just over a half a point registration advantage, and President Obama won the district by 5 percent in 2008. The Cook Political Report and other analysts believe the 7th will be a very closely contested race in the fall.
The massive 8th District includes large portions of San Bernardino, Inyo, and Mono Counties. To the south, the new 8th includes much of the old 41st District, including Twentynine Palms, Yucca Valley, Apple Valley, Highland, and the Mojave Desert. The 8th takes the rest of its territory from the old 25th District, following US 395 to include Adelanto, Barstow, Mammoth Lakes, and the Toiyabe and Inyo National Forests.
The 8th will be an open contest in the fall, as the district has shifted hundreds of miles from the San Francisco home of incumbent Nancy Pelosi and nearby Republicans Jerry Lewis and David Dreier are retiring. The GOP holds a 10 point registration advantage over the Democrats, and as such are expected to be favorites in the fall, but the number of Republican candidates and an independent challenge by former Republican Assemblyman Anthony Adams are making this an interesting district this year
The 9th District unifies much of the San Joaquin Valley that had been split into the11th, and 18th Districts. From the 10th, the new 9th District takes Antioch, Oakley, and Bethel Island. The 9th unifies Stockton, previously divided between the 11th and the 18th, as well as the nearby city of Lanthrop.
Eleventh District incumbent Jerry McNerney (D) will be running for the 9th District’s seat currently held by Barbara Lee (D), who will run in the 13th where she now resides. The Democrats hold a modest registration advantage of 9 points, and are considered slight favorites to hold the district in the fall–the Cook Political Report considers the race to lean toward the Democrats, who hold a 2 point edge in the PVI.
The 10th District combines the 18th and 19th Districts to form a district centered around Modesto. Following the Stanislaus-Merced county border, it picks up the cities of Turlock, Salida, Oakdale, and Riverbank from the 19th, and Modesto, Patterson, Tracy, Manteca, Ceres, the Modesto City-County Airport, and Ripon from the 18th.
Like many of the other districts drastically changed in the redistricting process, the new 10th was no longer a good fit for incumbent John Garamendi (D), who instead opted to run in more familiar the 3rd District. Republican Jeff Denham, who currently represents the 19th District, is the sole incumbent in the race or the 10th. The Democrats hold a 5 point registration advantage in the district, but lack an incumbent candidate for the district. This seat is expected to be competitive in the fall, although the Cook Political Report calls in a Republican leaning district.
The new 11th District includes much of the east and north Bay Area, including urban Richmond, Concord, and Antioch and suburban Orinda, Clayton, Lafayette, Moraga, Alamo, Danville, and Diablo. The 11th takes Danville from the previous 11th, a heavily gerrymandered district that combined it with Stockton and the San Joaquin Valley. The northern and western parts of the district comes from the old 7th district.
District 7 incumbent George Miller will be campaigning in the 11th, and looks to be a favorite in the primary over the Democratic candidates who oppose him, John Fitzgerald and Cheryl Sudduth. Miller is the favorite to win in the general as well; the 11th District is composed of 50% Democratic voters and 26% Republican voters, and 71% of residents voted for Obama in 2008 while only 29% voted for McCain, giving Miller a decisive advantage.
The 12th district includes the heart of San Francisco, reaching from Hunters Point (and Candlestick Park), the San Miguel Hills to the Golden Gate, Embarcadero, Bay Bridge, and South Park (and AT&T Park). The new 12th’s Sunset area and Mount Sutle had previously been a part of the new 12th, while the rest of the district was once included in the 8th District.
Eighth District incumbent and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi has announced she will run in the 12th District, and is heavily favored to win. Given the Democrats’ massive registration advantage (over 47 points), Pelosi’s main opposition will likely be Democratic challengers Americo Artura Diaz, David Peterson, and Summer Justice Shields Republican John Dennis and Green Party Candidate Barry Hermanson are also in contention. Eighty-seven percent of residents voted for Obama while only 13% voted for McCain in 2008. The Democratic candidates will have a large advantage over their Republican and Green counterparts in the next election, and the top two system could result in two Democrats on the ballot in November.
The 13th district combines the old 9th District with the old 13th, and includes the urban east Bay cities of Berkeley and Oakland, along with Piedmont, San Leandro, Alameda, and Albany. From the former 13th, the new 13th took Alameda and San Leandro with the rest coming from the old 9th District.
After redistricting, District 9 incumbent Barbara Lee now lives in the 13th. She faces competition from Democratic challenger Justin Jelinic and Independent Candidate Marilyn Singleton. The 13th district is heavily favored for Democrats. Only 9% of registered voters have identified as Republican while 64% of them have identified as Democratic. Additionally, 90% of voters supported Obama in the 2008 elections.
The 14th District includes South San Francisco and much of the South Bay, including San Bruno, Burlingame, Hillsborough, San Mateo, Milbrae, Poster City, Redwood City, Belmont, San Carlos, and Half Moon Bay. It is a combination of the old 12th (the northern portion) and the old 14th (southern portion). Incumbent Anna Eshoo will be running (and is strongly favored to win) in the new 18th instead.
Jackie Speier, the District 12 incumbent has decided to run in District 14 instead. Also in the running are two first time candidates, Democrat Michael Moloney and Republican Deborah Bacigalupi. District 14 heavily favors Democrats as voter registration shows that 35% more residents consider themselves Democrats than Republicans and 75% of voters supported Obama in 2008.
The 15th District is a combination of the former 9th, 10th, 11th, and 13th Districts, comprised of Hayward, Livermore, Union City, Pleasanton, Dublin, San Lorenzo, and Castro Valley. From the 10th the new 15th has picked up Livermore, while coastal portions of the district have been inherited from the former 13th District. The central portion of the 15th comes from the old 11th, which had previously united the Dublin, Pleasanton, and Amador Valley with Stockton and Gilroy.
District 13 incumbent Pete Stark has announced that he plans to run in the 15th district. Challenging him are fellow Democrats Eric Swalwell and Independent Christopher Pareja.
The Fifteenth favors Democrats as 49% of registered voters identify with the Democratic Party compared to only 24% of Republicans. Additionally, voters in 2008 heavily favored Obama in the presidential election. He won 69% of the vote to McCain’s 31%.
The 16th District, primarily comprised of the old 18th and 20th Districts, includes most of Fresno, as well as the entirety of Merced, Delhi, Livingston, Los Banos, Madera and Chowchilla.
Jim Costa, incumbent of District 20, announced his candidacy for the 16th district. Running against him are four candidates: Democrat Loraine Goodwin and Republicans Mark Garcia, Johnny Tacherra, and Brian Daniel Whelan. The 16th leans Democratic. 48% of registered voters are in the Democratic Party compared to only 33% in the Republican Party. Additionally, Obama won the district in 2008, with 59% of the vote.
The 17th District includes the south San Francisco Bay Area communities from Fremont to Santa Clara and Sunnyvale, taking up Newark, Milpitas, and Cupertino in between. The 17th is made up of a number of old districts, merging the southern tip of the 13th District, with much of the old 15th District (represented by Democrat Mike Honda), a small portion of the old 16th District, and the eastern portion of the former 14th District together.
District 15 incumbent Mike Honda will be running in the 17th. He faces a challenge from Republican Evelyn Li and Independent Charles Richardson. District 15 leans convincingly Democratic. 45% of registered voters say they are Democrats compared to only 21% Republican. In 2008, the District also made a strong showing for Obama; 71% of voters supported the Democrat while only 29% supported McCain.
The 18th District reaches from the UC Santa Cruz to Palo Alto, closely mirroring much of the former 14th District, though the 18th sheds Half Moon Bay and picks up Campbell and Los Gatos. From the former 14th the 18th keeps Palo Alto, Mountain View, Los Altos, Stanford, Menlo Park, Woodside, as well as Boulder Creek, Brookdale, Davenport, and much of the Santa Cruz Mountains. Finally, the new 18th grabs parts of Redwood City from the former 14th District.
District 14 incumbent Democrat Anna Eshoo is running in the 18th. Alongside her are three candidates: Democrat William Parks, Republican Dave Chapman, and Green Candidate Carol Brouillet. The district is safely Democratic, with 46% of registered voters belonging to the Democratic Party and only 26% to the Republican Party. The district voted convincingly for Obama in 2008 by a margin of 72% to 29%
The 19th District, largely made up of Santa Clara County, combines what was the 11th and 15th districts into a single district. The 19th unites the southeast side of San Jose with Morgan Hill, and Gilroy to make up its western half, while following the Stanislaus/Santa Clara County border to the east, the Alameda/Santa Clara County border to the north, and most of the Santa Clara/San Benito border to the south.
District 16 incumbent Democrat Zoe Lofgren is running in the 19th District. She has competition from two Republican challengers, Robert Murray and Phat Nguyen, as well as one independent challenger, Jay Blas Jacob Cabrea. Forty-eight percent of voters are registered democrats while only 24% are Republicans. Furthermore, 70% of votes went to Obama in 2008 while only 30% to McCain.
The 20th district remains extremely similar to the former 17th, but adds pieces of the former 14th and 11th. Compared to the 17th, the district has expanded northward to include Corralitos, Pinto Lake County Park, and Wastonville It contains most all of Monterey and San Benito Counties, as well as parts of Santa Cruz County. Notable cities include King City, Greenfield, San Benito, and Monterey.
Sam Farr, District 17 incumbent, has announced his candidacy in the 20th District. He faces competition from a variety of challengers. Democrat Art Dun; Republicans Mike Labarre and Jeff Taylor; Green Eric Peterson, and Independents Dan Caudle Ronald Paul Kabat. With a strong registration edge and success in 2008, Democrats will likely have a strong advantage in the new 20th, with 54% of registered voters compared to 22% for Republicans. In 2008, 73% of the new 20th’s voters supported Barack Obama over John McCain.
District 21 is created from the remnants of the former 20thDistrict, although parts of the former 21st, 22nd and 19th are included as well. It includes portions of Fresno and Kern County, and all of King County. The 21st district includes the cities of Fresno, Wasco, and Shafter as well as the Tulare Lake Bed. The 21st is also home to the Lemoore Naval Air Station and a sizable portion of the San Joaquin Valley.
District 21 is one of the few district lacking a incumbent candidacy . Currently there are three challengers for the primary election. Two of them, John Hernandez and Blong Xiong, are Democrats while the other, David Valadado, is a Republican. Of the three, Valadao is the most experienced, having been a State Assemblyman. The 21st District is competitive, although the Democrats still hold a substantial advantage over the GOP: 46% to 36%. In 2008, voters elected President Obama by a somewhat slim margin; 54% to 46%.
District 22 resembles a shrunken version of the old 21st. It combines Visalia and Tulare with portions of Clovis and northern Fresno from the 19th.=. In addition, the district includes portions of Madera County and eastern Fresno County. District 22 is also home to California State University Fresno, as well as the Fresno Yosemite International Airport.
The Republican incumbent from District 21, Devin Nunes, is now running in the 22nd District. Otis Lee, a novice Democrat, is his only challenger. The 22nd district is safely Republican: 47% of registered voters are Republican while 34% are Democratic. In 2008, 56% of voters supported McCain while only 46% supported Obama.
The 23rd District is primarily composed of the former 21st and 22nd Districts. It also possesses a small portion of the 25th. The 23rd includes the southern end of the Sierra Nevada Mountain range, including Sequoia National Park, Sierra National Forest, and Red Rock Canyon State Park. The 23rd is also home to California City, parts of Bakersfield, Tehachapi, and Porterville. The 23rd also has parts of Fresno County almost all of Tulare County, alongside a sizable portion of Kern County.
Republican Kevin McCarthy, formerly the representative from District 22, is now running in the 23rd District. Challenging him is Eric Parker, a Republican, and Terry Phillips, an Independent. The 23rd district is safely Republican:48% of registered voters are Republican and 30% are Democrats. In 2008, 63% of voters supported McCain compared to 37% for Obama.
The 24th District is extremely similar to the former 24th. The main change is the addition of the coastline and the Channel Islands, previously a part of the 23rd district. The new 24th includes much of San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Counties as well as Grover Beach, Santa Maria Orcutt, and California State University San Luis Obispo. Additionally, the 24th encompasses Vandenberg Air Force Base and the Cauchman Recreation Area.
District 23 incumbent Lois Capps, a Democrat, is now running in the 24th district. He faces competition from two Republican candidates, Abel Maldonado and Chris Mitchum, along with Independent Matt Boutte. District 24 is seen as a swing district. It has a large population of independents (at 20%) and roughly matched Democrats and Republicans: 39% and 35% respectively. While President Obama won the district in 2008, gubernatorial candidate Jerry Brown won by only 1% in 2010. District 23 could go to either party and is likely to be competitive this fall.
The 25th district is largely comprised of the western portions of the former 25th district. The 25th also takes parts of Simi Valley from the old 24th district. It draws its northwestern border and most of its territory from the northern part of Los Angeles County. The district is home to the cities of Santa Clarita and Palmdale as well as the Castaic Lake State Recreation Area.
Howard “Buck” McKeon, the Republican incumbent from the old 25th district, is seeking reelection to the new 25th. He is being challenged in the primary by Republican Dante Acosta and Democrat Lee Rogers. The 25th district is narrowly Republican, as 42% of registered voters identifying as Republicans compared to 35% as Democrats. In 2008, President Obama won by an extremely narrow 1% margin—suggesting this race may be competitive in November.
The 26th district is composed of the former 23rd and 24th districts. The 26th takes virtually all of its geography from the southern half of Ventura County. Large cities in the new 26th include Oxnard, Thousand Oaks, and Camarillo. It is also home to California Lutheran University, Ventura County Naval Base, and Port Hueneme.
The race for District 26 is wide open, without a clear incumbent and many candidates contesting the June 5th primary. Currently, there are four Democratic candidates: Julia Brownley, Albert Maxwell Goldberg, Jess Herrera, and David Cruz Thayne, one Republican Tony Strickland, and an Independent, Linda Parts. With a relatively close number of Republicans and Democrats (35% and 41% respectively), the 26th could be a swing district in 2012, although it went convincingly for Obama in 2008, by a margin of 16%.
The new 27th District is comprised of most of Pasadena and pieces of the north San Gabriel Valley, including Glendora, San Gabriel, Rosemead, Altadena, Arcadia, Temple City, Alhambra, and South San Gabriel. Claremont and parts of Upland, once prominent members of Inland Empire districts, have now been demoted to mere appendages of this Pasadena-dominated district. Rep. Judy Chu (D-Monterey Park) has announced she will be running and should be a solid favorite to win, given the double digit registration edge (42 %to 30%) her party holds in the district.
The 28th is mostly composed of the former 25th and 29th Districts. It is located in the center of Los Angeles County. The district stretches from the San Gabriel Mountain Ranges in the north to West Hollywood in the south. Notable cities include Glendale, Burbank, La Cañada Flintridge and parts of West Hollywood. The 28th is also home to several geographic landmarks including Mount Hollywood, Ruyon Canyon Park and Deukmejia Wilderness Park.
Democrat Howard Berman is the incumbent, but will be running in the new 30th District. Adam Schiff, the incumbent in the old 29th District, is the Democratic nominee for the 28th’s seat. With a 24 point registration advantage in a district President Obama won by 44 percent, this district appears to be a reasonable safe seat for Rep. Schiff and the Democrats.
The 29th district is composed of the former 28th and 27th. It is located in Los Angeles County, and stretches from North Hollywood to the Placerita Canyon. The 29th’s main cities are the San Fernando, Pacoima, and Sylmar. It is also home to Los Angeles Mission College, Pacoima Recreation Center and Branford Park. This is currently an open seat. With a nearly 70% Latino population and almost 40 point Democratic registration edge, it appears likely that Democratic Los Angeles City Councilman Tony Cardenas will prevail over his Republican opponent, David Hernandez. Given the District’s heavily Latino population, Democratic Representative Howard Berman (who previously represented most of the 28th District’s voters) shifted to run against fellow Democratic incumbent Brad Sherman in the 30th District.
The Thirtieth is made from the remnants of the 27th, 28th, and 24th districts. It consist primarily of Los Angeles County with a small portion of Ventura County. Notable City of Los Angeles neighborhoods covered include Northridge, Canoga Park, West Hills, and Granada Hills. The district is also home to California State University Northridge and the Chatsworth Reservoir.
The contest for District 30 is a heavyweight bout between Democratic incumbents Howard Berman, from the old 27th District, and Brad Sherman, from the old 28th District. The Democrats hold a safe 23 point registration advantage in the district, and Berman and Sherman may emerge as the top two in the primary to continue their battle until November. Thus far, Rep. Berman has outraised Rep. Sherman $2.98 million to $1.9 million, and at least one Super-PAC has joined the campaign in support of Rep. Berman. This intra-party battle may be one of the most expensive campaigns in the state and country.
The new 31st District unifies the city of San Bernardino, previously split between the 41st (Rep. Jerry Lewis, R-Redlands) and 43rd (Rep. Joe Baca, D-Rialto) Districts. The 31st includes San Bernardino, Rancho Cucamonga, part of Upland, Colton, Grand Terrace, Loma Linda, and Redlands. Democrats hold a small registration advantage over Republicans in this district (41% -37.5%)., Rep. Gary Miller (R-42) decided to run here instead of facing a primary battle against fellow Republican Ed Royce, in District 39, but Miller faces a primary challenge from incumbent State Senator Bob Dutton. Four Democrats are vying for the nomination: Pete Aguilar, Justin Kim, Rita Ramirez-Dean, and Renea Wickman, with Redlands Mayor Aguilar in the lead in both name recognition and fund raising. The Cook Political Report rates this race a Toss Up.
The California 32nd District reaches from El Monte to La Verne, creating the first district in a decade located entirely in Los Angeles County’s San Gabriel Valley. The district is heavily Latino. The main candidates contesting the district are Democrat Grace Napolitano, a displaced incumbent from the California 38th, and Republican political newcomer David Miller.
The new 33rd District covers the western coastline of Los Angeles County from the Ventura County line to Palos Verdes, incorporating the cities of Malibu, Santa Monica, Beverly Hills, the South Bay cities, and the Palos Verdes peninsula cities. It unites significant portions of the old 30th, 36th, and 46th districts. Democrat Representative Henry Waxman, the incumbent from the old Thirtieth District, is considered the certain winner, though Republican Christopher David, Independent Steve Collett, and Green Party candidate David Steinman are all running.
The new California 34th covers the portions of the City of Los Angeles around the intersection of the 10, 5, and 110 freeways, including Eagle Rock, Pico Union, and Downtown. There are three candidates in the race: Democrat Xavier Becarra, who has represented the old California 31st since 1993, Republican political newcomer Stephen Smith, and Peace and Freedom candidate Howard Johnson. Given the overwhelmingly Democratic nature of the district, Incumbent Representative Becerra faces an easy re-election campaign.
The 35th District covers Pomona and southwestern San Bernardino County. The 35th includes Fontana, Ontario, Montclair, Chino, Montclair, and Rialto in San Bernardino County, an area previously split into three separate districts. The 35th also includes the city of Pomona in Los Angeles County.
This seat will likely be a safe Democratic seat, given the sizable registration advantage the Democrats hold (48.6 percent to 29 percent), and the large number of Latinos in the area. President Obama won more than 66 percent of the vote here in 2008 Incumbent Representative Joe Baca (D-Rialto) was expected to run in the neighboring, but competitive, District 31 where he resides, State Senator Gloria Negrete McLeod (D-Chino) launched a campaign for the 35th seat. Representative Baca, however, chose to run in this safely Democratic seat rather than the competitive 31st. The 35th District closely resembles Senator McLeod’s current district. Senator McLeod and Rep. Baca are no strangers to conflict. In 2006 Congressman Baca’s son, Joe Baca Jr., was beaten in the Democratic State Senate primary by then-Assemblywoman Negrete McLeod. With the “top two” primary in June, Baca and Negrete McLeod are expected to continue their contest all the way to November.
The 36th District remains remarkably similar to its predecessor, the former 45th District, trading Moreno Valley and Murietta for San Jacinto, Banning, Calimesa and Desert Hot Springs. Palm Springs, Cathedral City, La Quinta, Coachella, Indio, Hemet, Blythe, and the Riverside County portion of Joshua Tree remain in the district.
Republican Representative Mary Bono Mack (R-Palm Springs) remains a favorite, as the narrow partisan advantage she has traditionally held in her district remains effectively unchanged, 42 % to 39%. Rep Mack stands as one of the few Republican winners of the redistricting process, as efforts to add Democratic-leaning Imperial County to the district were rejected by the California Redistricting Commission. Although the Democrats will likely again make a serious attempt to unseat Rep. Mack, led by their rookie candidate Dr. Raul Ruiz, Representative Bono Mack is favored to win.
The California 37th has moved north from its former location in South Central Los Angeles to the area north of Los Angeles International Airport. The district, which once contained portions of Compton and Long Beach, now surrounds Culver City and Windsor Hills. Democrat Karen Bass, the incumbent of the former California 33rd, is the sole candidate. Bass, the former Majority Floor Leader and Speaker of the California Assembly, was first elected in 2010.
The California 38th is now located in southeastern Los Angeles County, and includes Lakewood, Cerritos, Artesia, Norwalk, Santa Fe Springs, Montebello, South El Monte, and Whittier. Linda Sanchez, the incumbent Democratic Representative from the old California 39th, is running against Republicans Benjamin Campos and Jorge Robles. Democratic State Senator Rob Calderon considered a run, but withdrew. Representative Napolitano, who resides in the 38th, decided to run in the 32nd to avoid a primary battle with Representative Linda Sanchez.
The California 39th is similar to the old 42nd in that it straddles San Bernardino, Orange and Los Angeles counties. The district includes the homes of Republican Edward D. Royce, the incumbent of the former 40th District, and Gary Miller, the incumbent of the 42nd, but Miller agreed to run in the 31st to avoid a primary battle between incumbent Republicans. Royce’s Democratic opponent in 2012 will be Jay Chen, a first generation Taiwanese-American from Hacienda Heights. This seat is safely Republican.
The new 40th District in Los Angeles County includes the cities of Paramount, Downey, Huntington Park, Bell, Bell Gardens, Vernon, Commerce and most of unincorporated East Los Angeles. Two Democrats are running: Lucille Roybal-Allard, the Democratic incumbent from the former 34th District, and Democratic political newcomer David Sanchez. No Republicans have filed to run in the safely Democratic, and heavily Latino, 40th District.
The new 41st District includes the cities of Riverside, Moreno Valley, Glen Avon, Mira Loma, Rubidoux, Pedley, Sunnyslope, and Perris. A major change is in store for residents of the Riverside and Moreno Valley area. Once split between Rep. Mary Bono Mack’s (R-Palm Springs) 45th District, Rep. Darrell Issa’s (R-Vista) 49th District, Rep. Ken Calvert’s (R-Corona) 44th District, and Jerry Lewis’s (R-Redlands) 41st District, the Riverside/Perris/Moreno Valley area now has a district of its own. The 41st offers Democrats an open seat with a moderate registration advantage (42 percent to 36 percent). But popular Republican Riverside County Supervisor John Tavaglione is expected to win a competitive for this seat against the only declared Democratic candidate, Mark Takano.
The 42nd District remains somewhat similar to its predecessor, the 44th District. Although the core of the district, including Corona and Norco is unchanged, the district now stretches south and east to include much of what used to be in Darrell Issa’s (R-Vista) old 49th District and the old 4th District. Key cities include the newly incorporated city of Eastvale, Corona, Norco, Murrieta, Canyon Lake, Wildomar, Menifee and Lake Elsinore, along with unincorporated French Valley, Winchester, Romoland, Lakeview, and Nuevo. The Orange County portion of the old 44th is no longer included in the new 42nd, which is located entirely in Riverside County.
Much like the 36th District, the 42nd District is unlikely to undergo any significant political change. Rep. Ken Calvert (R-Corona) resides in the district, and Republicans enjoy a ten point registration advantage. Rep. Calvert, probably the biggest Republican winner in this redistricting effort after facing significant re-election challenges in 2008 and 2010, will likely have a much safer seat than in years past.
The 43rd District in western Los Angeles County includes the cities of Lomita, Gardena, and Inglewood, Hawthorne and most of Torrance, as well as Los Angeles International Airport and its neighboring Westchester neighborhood of the City of Los Angeles. Democrats Bob Flores and Maxine Waters, incumbent of the former 35th, will contest the safely Democratic and significantly African-American 43rd in 2012. No Republicans have filed to run.
The 44th District in southern Los Angeles County includes the Watts, Wilmington and San Pedro neighborhoods of Los Angeles and the cities of Carson, Compton, and Lynnwood. The district was drawn by the Redistricting Commission to create a third district where an African American was expected to win, but the Commission’s deliberations failed to note that that the area includes heavily Anglo San Pedro and San Pedro resident and incumbent Anglo Democratic Representative Janice Hahn, who previously represented the 36th District. Hahn will face incumbent African American Democrat (but scandal-plagued) Representative Laura Richardson, formerly of the 37th. No Republicans have filed to run in the 44th. Hahn and Richardson are expected to advance to November in June’s top-two primary in this overwhelmingly Democratic seat.
The 45th District in Orange County includes the cities of Laguna Woods, Tustin, Irvine, Mission Viejo, and Rancho Santa Margarita, as well as the University of California, Irvine, and the Cleveland National Forest. The heavily Republican 45th will be contested between Republican John Campbell, the incumbent from the former 48th, and Democrat Sukhee Kang, the current mayor of Irvine.
District 46 contains most of Anaheim, the western portion of Orange, and most of Santa Ana It covers areas included in old districts 40, 46, 47 and 48. The Latino and Democratic 46th District will be contested between Loretta Sanchez, the Democratic incumbent from the old 47th District, and Republican John Cullum, who unsuccessfully ran for election to the Placentia City Council in 2002.
District the communities of Cypress, Stanton, Signal Hill, Long Beach, most of Garden Grove, Westminister and Catalina Island. This Orange – Los Angeles County includes portions of old districts 46, 37, 40, 46 and 47, and the new 47th has no incumbent Representative. The primary Republican candidate is Gary DeLong, though former Representative Steve Kuykendall is also in the race, and the leading Democratic candidate is Alan Lowenthal, a current member of the California State Senate. The election is expected to be competitive though the district leans Democratic.
The 48th District, located entirely in Orange County, reaches from Laguna Niguel to Seal Beach, including Huntington Beach, Fountain Valley, Costa Mesa, Newport Beach, Laguna Beach, and Aliso ViejoThe safely Republican 48th will be contested by Dana Rohrabacher, the Republican incumbent of the former California 46th, and Democrat Ron Varasteh.
The California 49th is home of Republican Darrel Issa, current head of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. Centered around Camp Pendleton, the 49th and follows the coastline to San Clemente and Dana Point in the North, and Solana Beach, Del mar, and Rancho Santa Fe in the South. The 49th includes Encinitas, Carlsbad, Vista, Oceanside Issa, who is running for reelection, will face Democrat Jerry Tetalman, a political newcomer, in the 2012 Congressional elections.
The new California 50th is much the same as the old California 52nd, in that it encompasses much of the Northeastern quadrant of San Diego County. The district includes Pine Valley, Jamul, the western portion of El Cajon, Santee, Escondido, San Marcos, Valley Center, Fallbrook, and the Riverside County city of Temecula The Republican incumbent of the old 50th, Donald D. Hunter, has been redistricted into the new 50th. Hunter will face Democratic political newcomer David Secor in this safely Republican district.
The 51st District has remained largely unchanged following the redistricting process. The district continues to span all of Imperial County as well as the entirety of California’s border with Mexico. The only change is the slight loss of a portion of suburban Southeastern San Diego, including Chula Vista, and the addition of the City of San Diego’s Barrio Logan area. Democratic incumbent Bob Filner will be retiring this year to run for the position of mayor of San Diego. The heavily Latino and solidly Democratic seat will be contested between Republican newcomer Xanthi Gionis, Democratic State Senator Juan Vargas, and former Democratic State Senator Denise Ducheny.
The 52nd District includes the cities of Poway and Coronado along with the City of San Diego from San Pasqual to La Jolla, Point Loma, and Downtown. The main candidates in the race for the seat are former Democratic Assemblywoman Lori Saldaña and the Republican Representative of the California 50th, Brian Bilbray. The seat is competitive but leans Republican.
The 53rd district is centered around Lemon Grove and Spring Valley, with a westward extension to Kensington, Balboa Park, and Serra Mesa; a northern extension to El Cajon; and a southern arm into Chula Vista. Democrat Susan Davis has represented much of the district since 2001, but it also includes portions of the old 51st and 52nd districts. The district is safely Democratic, though Davis faces a challenge from Republican Nick Popaditch in the upcoming 2012 elections.