Newsletter: Essential Politics: California primary results on many races still in limbo, at least officially


I’m Christina Bellantoni, and as we predicted, they are still counting votes in Los Angeles County.

Welcome to your California primary results edition of Essential Politics.

We knew it would be a long night, and when we finished with print deadline in The Times newsroom after midnight, we had both dramatic uncertainties and fascinating examples of how the top-two primary system can scramble expectations. (See Wednesday’s front page.)

First, the presidential race, which will conclude five months from today when we’re all back at the polls.


“The end of the primaries is only the beginning of the work we need to do,” Hillary Clinton said in Brooklyn as she acknowledged making history.

Donald Trump, for his part, looked to November after a tough day with Republican leaders denouncing some of his recent statements about the judge in the Trump University case.

He, of course, won the California primary. But Ohio Gov. John Kasich was pulling at least 11% of the vote.


Clinton made clear she was ready for a gender battle with Trump. While we’re on the topic, our Electoral College map is up: give it a spin!

Bernie Sanders was trailing Clinton by 14 points in California with nearly three-quarters reporting. After winning at least one state earlier in the night, Sanders at first sounded conciliatory in his remarks to adoring fans in Santa Monica, but the Vermont senator made clear he intends to campaign through D.C.’s primary next week. In between then and now, Sanders will sit down with President Obama (at his request) to continue a conversation about the “significant issues” the senator has raised during the campaign.

Sanders won the rural, northern part of California while Clinton was performing strong in Southern California.

What we do know is there likely will be millions of ballots left uncounted statewide, given California for the first time allowed people whose ballot was postmarked by Election Day to vote. It could be the end of the week before we have a clear idea of the actual vote total.

We surfaced every moment, large and small, and dozens of voters, animals, tattoos and hay bales on our Essential Politics primary live blog. You can also check out the story on our Snapchat: latimespolitics.

For more on the race as it develops, keep an eye on Trail Guide and follow @latimespolitics.


Pull out your history books and you’ll discover that until the early 20th century, it was state legislatures and not voters that elected members of the U.S. Senate. Since that time -- 1914 to be exact in California -- a Republican has appeared on the general election ballot for the Senate.


That streak ends in November.

On Tuesday, voters sent Atty. Gen. Kamala Harris and Orange County Rep. Loretta Sanchez -- two Democrats -- to the general election. As John Myers reports, what’s been a quiet race so far could quickly intensify. And Republicans will be a key target, most notably for Sanchez.

Meantime, the same-party result left Paul Mitchell, one of California’s most often quoted political analysts, having to make good on a wager he’d made: He would run naked around the state Capitol if two Democrats advanced in the Senate race. Decide for yourself if he actually did it.


California voters showed up at the polls Tuesday with gusto, despite learning the night before that Clinton had clinched the Democratic Party’s nomination.

Hundreds of Californians complained of voting problems, including broken machines, polling sites that opened late and incomplete voter rolls. Some voters in downtown Los Angeles were still in line to cast ballots an hour after polls closed.

Only in L.A.? Photographer Jay Clendenin captured a shot of a turtle with an “I voted” sticker in Beverly Hills.

Candidate bales hay on Election Day, loses race.


Sanders rubbed elbows with stars on Hollywood’s Walk of Fame in a last-minute campaign push, and continued his tour through L.A. with a visit to a farmer’s market in Silver Lake.

Ordinary voters weren’t the only ones taking selfies at the polls. Celebrities did, too.

L.A. County elections chief Dean Logan jumped into the Twitter fray to personally resolve voter issues at the ballot box.

One Republican voter in Atwater Village tried to obtain a Democratic ballot, saying he “wouldn’t vote for [Trump] for dogcatcher.”

A Congressional race in Santa Barbara was just slightly less exciting than the opening of a new Dunkin Donuts.


There were several surprises Tuesday night in congressional races we’re watching. Sarah Wire has the details, and we’ll have more on Essential Politics as contests are called throughout the day.


Oil companies, education advocates, unions and other activist groups spent a record amount to influence campaigns for the California Legislature in this year’s primary. Here’s a look at who earned a spot on the general election ballot in November.


-- Meet the four people arrested after Trump’s rally in San Jose turned violent.

-- Janice Hahn, Kathryn Barger lead supervisor races in Los Angeles.

-- What do you think of Trump? Readers can weigh in with our quick survey.


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