CA-50: Special Election Date Is Set
California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R) announced late last week that a special election to replace former Rep. Duke Cunningham (R) in the state's 50th District will be held on April 11, with a runoff set for June 6.
Actually, under state law, the official special election is on June 6; all candidates -- regardless of party affiliation -- will compete in the April 11 open primary. If one candidate receives better than 50 percent of the vote (an unlikely outcome), he or she wins the seat outright. If no candidate gets a majority, the top votegetter from each party advances to the June runoff.
Although the district went for President Bush by 10 points in 2004, the scandal that led to Cunningham's resignation makes Democrats think they have a real chance here. The seat is likely to be the first major test of whether the "culture of corruption" argument can be a winner for Democrats at the ballot box in 2006.
Democrats are united behind 2004 nominee Francine Busby (D), who has gained the support of EMILY's List. A number of Republicans are in the race, including former Rep. Brian Bilbray, former state Assemblyman Howard Kaloogian and state Sen. Bill Morrow.
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