Update at 6/9 3:52 p.m.: Plaintiff-bar backed candidates may well end up taking all four of the CAOC's targeted legislative races. Attorney Bob Wieckowski has now opened up a 1,050-vote lead over Garrett Yee in the 20th AD primary, according to the latest figures from the Secretary of State's office. Mary Salas' edge in the 40th Senate District has widened a bit to 336 votes over Juan Vargas. Counting of absentee ballots in both races continues.
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It’s been a mixed night for the plaintiff bar.
Trial lawyers’ favored candidate in the 53rd Assembly District, Democrat Betsy Butler, appears to be cruising to victory despite the fact that corporate-backed groups spent more than $600,000 to defeat her. Butler is the former fund raiser for the Consumer Attorneys of California.
In the Central Coast’s 28th Assembly District, favored candidate Luis Alejo looks to be headed toward victory in the Democratic primary as well. Alejo is a staff attorney with the Monterey County Superior Court.
Two other Democratic primaries are too close to call right now. In the East Bay’s 20th AD, attorney Bob Wieckowski holds a slim lead 51-49 lead over Garrett Yee. Wieckowski is politically aligned with the trial lawyers while Yee, a community college trustee, received backing from pro-MICRA groups.
And in the San Diego region’s 40th Senate District, plaintiff-bar backed Mary Salas was clinging to a 36-vote lead over Juan Vargas with 40 percent of precincts reporting. Interests groups have spent well over $1 million on the race.
On the initiative side of the ballot, voters approved Prop. 14, the so-called open primary measure. The CAOC opposed the initiative, arguing that it would give free-spending corporate groups a significant advantage in fueling future legislative campaigns.