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Republican Assemblyman Marc Steinorth hangs on to his seat, beating Democrat Abigail Medina

Assemblyman Marc Steinorth (R-Rancho Cucamonga) has defeated Democrat Abigail Medina to keep his seat in a surprisingly tight race.

The Associated Press called the race for Steinorth on Monday evening, nearly three weeks after election day. According to the latest election returns, Steinorth was ahead by 2,513 votes. 

Medina's strong showing in the primary — when she won by three percentage points — and the district's high Latino voter registration made the 40th Assembly District a major target for Democrats this year.

State and county parties spent more than $2.4 million in an attempt to unseat Steinorth in the 40th Assembly District, and GOP committees spent $1.2 million defending him.

Medina, a San Bernardino school board member, was boosted by Tom Steyer's NextGen political action committee, while Steinorth benefited from spending by groups funded by oil companies, the real estate industry and other business interests.

Much of the Democrats' campaign centered on trying to tie Steinorth to Donald Trump in mailers and advertisements. Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon also showed up to campaign with Medina on several occasions.

Underscoring the importance of this race to Democratic leaders, Medina was one of four legislative candidates to be endorsed by President Obama in the final weeks of the campaign.

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