Jungle boogie by @BloggersRUs

Jungle boogie

by Tom Sullivan

June 5 primary states
New Jersey
New Mexico
South Dakota

Big primary day. None bigger than California's notorious "jungle primary." In California since 2012, all candidates run on the same primary ballot regardless of party. The top two vote-getters run against each other in November. Again, regardless of party. FiveThirtyEight explains, this was supposed to give moderates a better shot at appealing to voters across the political spectrum. It hasn't always worked out that way:

What it has done is occasionally let two candidates of the same party slip through to the general election, which critics say deprives voters of a true choice in November. Let’s say you have a district that’s perfectly split — 50-50 — between Democratic and Republican voters, but 10 Democratic candidates run for the seat compared with only two Republicans. The two Republicans might get 25 percent of the vote apiece, while the Democrats each receive 5 percent. That would advance the two Republicans to the general election, locking up that district for the GOP.
That's the fear today, with many fresh-faced Democrats activated by the election of the Propaganda President vying for a seat in Washington. Several of California's congressional districts could see Democrats shut out in November. Complicating matters in the 48th Congressional District (incumbent Republican Dana Rohrabacher), eight Democrats are on the ballot, yet three have already dropped out.

Seven districts won by Hillary Clinton plus three others are on the Democrat's target list today. The Los Angeles Times reports:

The party is preparing for what it sees as the worst-case scenario: Democrats get shut out of one or two California races. That would leave them to compete in at least five GOP-held districts where Clinton won in 2016. Two of those districts in the Central Valley have proved hard for Democratic House candidates to penetrate. If they are shut out of more than a couple of districts in the primary, Democrats will have to scramble to find opportunities elsewhere in the country to flip the 23 seats they need to retake the House.

Democrats have expanded their map of targets around the nation in part due to an intense boom of enthusiasm they are seeing and the bumper crop of first-time candidates stepping up to run. But here, in the epicenter of the resistance, that enthusiasm could cost them.

On the upside for Democrats, none of the incumbent Democrats targeted by the GOP have attracted challengers able to raise significant money. Republican registration in the state is now so low that the party recently fell to third-party status.

Outside California, keep an eye on the Democrats in New Mexico's 1st Congressional District:

Former law professor Antoinette Sedillo Lopez has raised more than $1 million in her race. She has been endorsed by the political arm of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus and liberal groups including the Our Revolution and Working Families Party chapters in New Mexico. Former state Democratic Party Chairwoman Deb Haaland is also a top candidate and would be the first Native American woman elected to Congress if she wins.
Albuquerque city councilman Pat Davis dropped out of the race and endorsed Haaland. Prior to that, reports, "Haaland was polling at 19 percent to Damon Martinez’s 22 percent and Antoinette Sedillo Lopez’s 17 percent, according to the Albuquerque Journal (Davis was at 5 percent in that poll)." Polls close tonight at 9 p.m. EDT.

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