By Eric Heinz

Article last updated at 10 a.m. on Thursday, June 7

Update, 12:10 p.m. on June 6

It was an interesting night for Californians, as many of the elections for the state’s primary races were closely watched around the nation.

Democrats in Southern California have been trying to send a “blue wave” to Congress and the Senate against a vast number of GOP-held seats, but in the 49th Congressional District primary election—which includes San Clemente, Dana Point and San Juan Capistrano—it was longtime tax-fighter Diane Harkey, a Republican from Dana Point, who came out on top.

It was a bit of a surprise, as three Democrats gridlocked between 4 percentage points from second to fourth. As of Wednesday morning, San Juan Capistrano’s Mike Levin had the upper hand with 17.1 percent of the vote, Del Mar’s Sara Jacobs with 15.1 percent and San Clemente’s Doug Applegate with 13.2 percent. The votes are still being calculated, but it appears Harkey and Levin will face each other in November.

It was Applegate who almost unseated longtime Republican Rep. Darrell Issa, who had been in Congress for nearly 20 years.
Harkey went on a massive advertising campaign weeks before the election, calling herself the tax-fighting candidate and promising to reform what she said are burdensome tax policies at the federal level.

Levin, a former chair of the Orange County Democratic Party, has been campaigning since the end of the 2016 election on the back of making it easier and more attractive for industries to change to alternative energy as well as making changes to access higher education.
Jacobs would be the youngest woman to be elected to Congress, at age 29, and has advocated for women’s access to health care, working to create jobs and more affordable housing.

Applegate, the only San Clemente candidate in the race, lost to Issa in the last election and is hoping to make his way back into the fray.

In other elections, District Attorney Tony Rackauckas is defending his seat by a narrow margin against challenger Todd Spitzer, who came in second and will face him in November. The two were well ahead of Democrats Brett Murdock and Lenore Albert-Sheridan. This particular race has drawn interest, as Rackauckas has been the Orange County District Attorney since 1998 and had a falling out with Spitzer when the two worked together at the DA’s office.

Assemblyman Bill Brough, R-73, had almost half the votes to retain his seat for a fourth term. Brough has been heavily involved in issues related to San Clemente, particularly in 2016 when he and State Sen. Patricia Bates, R-36, fought for laws that would amend satellite hospital requirements in order to facilitate the needs of the city’s only emergency room. Their bills failed in committees later on that session.

Lisa Bartlett, the Republican Orange County Supervisor for District 5, ran unopposed and gained the necessary votes to retain her seat for another term.

Semi-Official Results

Results as of 10 a.m. on Thursday, June 7.

Governor (Top 5) 
Gavin Newsom, Democrat, 1,358,125 (33.4%)
John Cox, Republican, 1,067,180 (26.2%)
Antonio Villaraigosa, Democrat, 546,866 (13.4%)
Travis Allen, Republican, 395,036 (9.7%)
John Chiang, Democrat, 364,961 (9.0%)

Lt. Governor
Eleni Kounalakis, Democrat, 900,584 (23.4%)
Ed Hernandez, Democrat, 796,568 (20.7%)
Cole Harris, Republican, 697,500 (18.4%)
Jeff Bleich, Democrat, 358,815 (9.3%)
David Fennell, Republican, 318,744 (8.3%)
Lydia Ortega, Republican, 253,046 (6.6%)
David R. Hernandez, Republican, 238,032 (6.2%)
Gayle McLaughlin, No Party, 138,130 (3.6%)
Tim Ferreira, Libertarian, 56,983 (1.5%)
Cameron Gharabiklou, Democrat, 47,582 (1.2%)
Danny Thomas, No Party, 28,370 (0.7%)

U.S. Senate (Top 5), all precincts reporting
Dianne Feinstein, Democrat, 1,714,036 (43.8 %)
Kevin De Leon, Democrat, 440,993 (11.3 %)
James P. Bradley, Republican, 343,894 (8.8 %)
Arun K. Bhumitra, Republican, 208,849 (5.3 %)
Paul A. Taylor, Republican, 199,716 (5.1 %)

49th Congressional District, all precincts reporting
Diane L. Harkey, Republican, 28,695 (25.6%)
Mike Levin, Democrat 19,226 (17.1%)
Sara Jacobs, Democrat 17,247 (15.4%)
Doug Applegate, Democrat, 14,704 (13.1%)
Kristin Gaspar, Republican, 9,736 (8.7%)
Rocky J. Chávez, Republican 8,654 (7.7%)
Paul G. Kerr, Democrat, 5,311 (4.7%)
Brian Maryott, Republican, 3,375 (3.0 %)
Mike Schmitt, Republican, 1,498(1.3%)
Joshua Schoonover, Republican, 851 (0.8%)
Craig A. Nordal, Republican 682 (0.6%)
David Medway, Republican 645 (0.6%)
Robert Pendleton, No Party, 537 (0.5 %)
Danielle St. John, Green 392 (0.4%)
Joshua L. Hancock, Libertarian, 317 (0.3%)
Jordan P. Mills, Peace and Freedom, 130 (0.1%)

State Senate, 36th District
Patricia C. ‘Pat’ Bates, Republican, 78,163 (54.8%)
Marggie Castellano, Democrat, 64,424 (45.2%)

State Assembly, 73rd District
William (Bill) Brough, Republican, 34,796 (46.9%)
Scott Rhinehart, Democrat, 34,796 (39.5%)
Ed Sachs, Republican, 10,115 (13.6%)


Orange County District Attorney

Tony Rackauckas, Republican, 131,783 (39.4%)
Todd Spitzer, Republican, 118,195 (35.3%)
Brett Murdock, Democrat, 72,071 (21.5%)
Lenore Albert-Sheridan, Democrat, 12,567 (3.8%)


Orange County Sheriff-Coroner

Don Barnes, 167,426 (50.7%)
Duke Nguyen, 99,136 (30.0%)
David C. Harrington, 63,693 (19.3%)


Orange County Board of Education, District 5
Lisa Sparks, 51,120 (56.3%)
Mary Navarro, 22,279 (24.6%)
Kimberly Clark, 8,488 (9.4%)
Dan Draitser, 5,584 (6.2%)
Mike Dalati, 3,251 (3.6%)

Statewide Ballot Measures

68, Natural Resources Bond
Yes, 2,179,210 (56.0%)
No, 1,712,021 (44.0%)
69, Transportation Revenue: Restrictions and Limits
Yes, 3,134,568 (80.4%)
No, 757,300 (19.6%)
70, Greenhouse Gas Reduction Reserve Fund
No, 2,384,946 (63.6%)
Yes, 1,363,872 (36.4%)
71, Ballot Measures: Effective Date
Yes, 2,901,984 (76.8%)
No, 876,436 (23.2%)

72, Property Tax: New Construction: Rain-Capture
Yes, 3,196,128 (83.3%)
No, 641,359 (16.7%)

Update, 10 p.m.: Of about 192,000 mail-in ballots cast in Orange County, there could be tens of thousands of ballots that were dropped off at the Orange County Registrar’s office today, which means further results may not be tallied for hours, according to a CBS News interview with the Orange County Register. 

A few more precincts have been reported since the last update, closing the gaps slightly in the 49th congressional district. Follow us on Twitter at @SCTimesNews for immediate updates from the California Secretary of State and Orange Country Registrar.

Update, 8:45 p.m: Early polls for the 49th congressional district show Republican Diane Harkey of Dana Point in the lead with 32 percent of the vote, followed by Democrats Mike Levin of San Juan Capistrano with 19.3 percent, Sara Jacobs of Del Mar with 12.1 percent and Doug Applegate of San Clemente at 7.9 percent. San Juan Capistrano’s Brian Maryott has 6.9 percent of the vote at 8:42 p.m.

Harkey went on a massive advertising campaign weeks before the election, calling herself the tax-fighting candidate and promising to reform what she said are burdensome tax policies at the federal level.

Levin, a former chair of the Orange County Democratic Party, has been campaigning since the end of the 2016 election on the back of making it easier and more attractive for industries to change to alternative energy as well as making changes to access to higher education.

Jacobs would be the youngest woman to be elected to Congress, at age 29, and has advocated for women’s access to health care, working to create jobs and more affordable housing.

Applegate, the only San Clemente candidate in the race, lost to Rep. Darrell Issa, the Republican candidate who held the seat for nearly two decades, last year and is hoping to make his way back into the fray.

Maryott has been very visible in recent weeks, campaigning around local cities on behalf of strengthening national security policies and health care reform.

Update, 8 p.m.: Polls have now closed for the California primary election. The results could pour in slowly, as mail-in ballots shipped today will still be counted, and provisional ballots will also have to be counted, and that could take a few days.  

Kati Kalama, 2, views an American flag waving outside the polling station on June 5 at the San Clemente Community Center as his parents wait in line to vote. Photo: Eric Heinz
Kati Kalama, 2, views an American flag waving outside the polling station on June 5 at the San Clemente Community Center as his parents wait in line to vote. Photo: Eric Heinz

The results will be posted here as they become available from the California Secretary of State and the Orange County Registrar of Voters. For the most immediate results, visit www.ocvote.com/fileadmin/live/pri2018/results.htm#c-1680 and vote.sos.ca.gov/

This is a developing story. More information will be provided when it becomes available. Updates will be posted in the sequence they’re made, latest to oldest. 

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