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Gov. Jerry Brown delivers his final State of the State address.
Gov. Jerry Brown delivers his final State of the State address. (Hector Amezcua / Sacramento Bee)

Seeking to capitalize on President Trump’s pledges to focus on the nation’s infrastructure, Gov. Jerry Brown is urging the president to consider California’s high-speed rail efforts as part of his first official visit to the Golden State.

“You have lamented that ‘we don’t have one fast train’ in our country,” Brown wrote in a Monday letter to Trump. “Well, Mr. Trump, in California we are trying to fix that. We have a world-class train system under construction. We invite you to come aboard and truly ‘Make America Great Again.’”

Trump’s visit on Tuesday is scheduled to focus on a review near San Diego of prototypes for his promised border wall, followed by a Beverly Hills fundraiser for the Republican National Committee. A spokesman for Brown said the governor is not planning to greet the president on his arrival or accompany him on the border wall inspection.

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Antonio Villaraigosa thinks he has a solid weapon to hammer Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom with as they run for governor. And he probably does.

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  • U.S. Senate race
Sen. Dianne Feinstein
Sen. Dianne Feinstein (J. Scott Applewhite / Associated Press)

The deadline came and went, and no prominent Republicans filed to run against Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein, meaning for the second election in a row there will be two Democrats facing each other in a race at the top of the ballot in California. 

Feinstein, 84, is seeking her fifth full term. She will have 31 opponents on the June 5 primary, with one serious contender, a Democrat, taking most of her attention and showing up in polls.

California has a top-two primary system, which means the top-two vote-getters advance to the general election, regardless of party. In 2016, a handful of Republican candidates in the top of the pack split the GOP vote, and sent then-Rep. Loretta Sanchez, a Democrat, to the general election with Democrat Kamala Harris, who won the race. It was the first time two Democrats ran against each other statewide.

  • Congressional races
  • 2018 election
Rep. Tom McClintock (R-Elk Grove) talks with voters at a tea party group. Four Democrats and one Republican have filed to run against him.
Rep. Tom McClintock (R-Elk Grove) talks with voters at a tea party group. Four Democrats and one Republican have filed to run against him. (Gina Ferazzi / Los Angeles Times)

Democrats may have added both the 4th and 22nd congressional districts to their California target list, but they face an uphill battle where Republicans hold a large voter registration advantage and where President Trump won by a large margin. Still, several candidates are banking on a wave election to attempt to oust sitting Republicans.

Rep. Tom McClintock’s 4th Congressional District wasn’t initially on the radar, but unexpectedly strong fundraising by two Democrats prompted Times editors to recently add the race as No. 10 on the ranking of the most competitive House races.

Local Democrats have been particularly enthusiastic about their chances, and five people have filed to run against McClintock, 61, a conservative fifth-term congressman who lives in Elk Grove.

Rep. Raul Ruiz is one of four Democratic incumbents in California whose districts Republicans hope to flip.
Rep. Raul Ruiz is one of four Democratic incumbents in California whose districts Republicans hope to flip. (Alex Brandon / Associated Press)

Republicans are going to be largely on the defensive this year in California’s House races, defending 10 of their 14 seats, seven of which were won by Hillary Clinton in 2016.

There are some swing districts where Republican challengers are attempting to make gains and where the GOP will invest resources, however unlikely the chances of ousting a Democrat this fall.

Here’s a look at who has filed to run in each district. The list still needs to be finalized by the Secretary of State.

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Antonio Villaraigosa is best known as the former mayor of Los Angeles. But that title will not be on the ballot when voters choose the next governor of California.

  • Congressional races
  • 2018 election
Republican Scott Baugh is sworn in as a candidate in the 48th Congressional District.
Republican Scott Baugh is sworn in as a candidate in the 48th Congressional District. (Jon Fleischman)

It’s official: Well-known Orange County Republican Scott Baugh filed papers Friday evening to run against GOP Rep. Dana Rohrabacher, his onetime friend and mentor. 

In a statement, Baugh said voters “deserve a Representative who is in touch and focused on what’s important to the families who live here.”

“Three decades in Congress can change a person and unfortunately Dana has changed,” his statement continued. “He has lost focus on what’s important and does not seem to understand that the middle-class families in our district care more about their jobs, the economy and taxes than about Vladimir Putin, Julian Assange and marijuana.”

  • California Republicans
Republican Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa.
Republican Sen. Joni Ernst of Iowa. (Alex Brandon / Associated Press)

Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst, an Iraq war veteran and up-and-comer in the GOP, will give the keynote address at the California Republican Party’s three-day convention in San Diego in early May.

Ernst, the first woman to represent Iowa in Congress, was considered to be on President Trump’s short list of potential vice presidential running mates in the 2016 campaign — but removed her name from consideration.

The senator has come out in opposition to the president’s plan to place tariffs on steel and aluminum imports. She also criticized the White House for the way it handled the Rob Porter domestic abuse scandal.

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  • California Legislature
  • Sexual harassment
Former state Sen. Tony Mendoza (D-Artesia) casts his vote for a Democratic Party endorsement
Former state Sen. Tony Mendoza (D-Artesia) casts his vote for a Democratic Party endorsement (Kent Nishimura/Los Angeles Times)

Although Tony Mendoza resigned from his state Senate seat last month under threat of expulsion, he could be back in the seat as early as June in time to vote on the state budget.

The Artesia Democrat, who was pressured to quit because of sexual harassment allegations, was among a handful of candidates who took out papers on Friday to run in a special election to fill the vacancy in the 32nd Senate District caused by his own resignation.

Mendoza, 46, is running in the special election for the remaining months of the current term that ends Dec. 3 as well as in the primary for the new, four-year senate term. That means voters on June 5 will see Mendoza as a candidate for two elections at the same time. 

  • California in Congress
(Jose Luis Magana / Associated Press)

California Sen. Kamala Harris, who is serving her first term, has an estimated net worth that puts her financially near the middle of the pack in a delegation that includes both the richest and poorest members of Congress.

Harris reported an estimated minimum net worth of $391,100 in 2017, the first year she held federal office and had to submit the disclosures every member of Congress files.

Harris is thought to be considering a presidential bid in 2020, and the disclosure was among the first glimpses of the former California attorney general’s finances. Harris released tax returns during the 2016 campaign that showed she and her husband made $1.17 million in 2015 and paid $450,000 in state and federal income taxes.