California’s Senate primary could derail two prominent Democrats and elevate Republican Steve Garvey

AP News

Michael R. Blood
February 25, 2024
LOS ANGELES (AP) — California’s Senate race was expected to be a three-way Democratic prizefight, but the possibility of a record-low turnout is elevating the chances of Republican Steve Garvey, a former baseball star, and could derail the congressional careers of two prominent progressives.
In a year headlined by a likely presidential rematch that many Americans are dreading, California voters thus far have been sluggish to return mail-in ballots that were sent to 22 million homes earlier this month. The relative trickle of ballots has tended to come from older, white, conservative-leaning homeowners, a sweet spot for Republicans such as Garvey, a one-time National League MVP who played for the Los Angeles Dodgers and the San Diego Padres.
For months, Rep. Adam Schiff has had the fundraising and polling edge in a crowded Democratic field. Garvey’s ascent has imperiled the political prospects of Reps. Barbara Lee and Katie Porter. The top two finishers in the March 5 contest, regardless of party, advance to the general election in November in the liberal-leaning state.