There have been some intriguing developments related to elections and California that may bode for a slightly less blue future for the Golden State.

I recently noted that the state identified over 84,000 duplicate voter registrations during a detailed audit of rolls in the wake of Motor-Voter implementation.

Now, a Republican won a seat in a recent Los Angeles City Council election, beating an enthusiastic advocate of the Green New Deal.

John Lee appears to have won the race to represent the northwest San Fernando Valley on the L.A. City Council, bringing an unofficial end to a contest that reflected a changing part of L.A., but not enough to flip a traditionally conservative seat on a mostly Democrat dais.

With 100% of precincts counted, the final tally Tuesday night showed Lee with 16,724 votes, and opponent Loraine Lundquist with 15,395 votes, according to the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder. And that was enough for Lee to claim a victory.

“I feel great,” Lee said as a group of supporters cheered him on at his Porter Ranch headquarters. “We’re celebrating tonight and tomorrow we’re going to work. We’ll start talking about how to bring this community together. We’re realizing that we have the same goals and we need to start working towards those goals.”

One analysis of the result came through the classic racialist lens.

For the first time ever, the Los Angeles City Council will likely have two Asian Americans serving at the same time.

Longtime council aide John Lee was recognized by the city council Wednesday as the Councilman-elect for northwestern San Fernando Valley’s 12th District seat following a special election against Loraine Lundquist.

…Lee joins Democratic Councilman David Ryu, who is Korean American, as the second Asian American member to currently serve on the city council.

On the other hand, the Los Angeles Times (upset that Lee’s Green New Deal supporting opponent lost) painted Lee as an LA political insider (hat-tip Don Surber).

Astrophysicist and college educator Loraine Lundquist ran for office with a promise to take on the status quo, saying she would shake up Los Angeles City Hall by ending “pay-to-play politics” and scrutinizing decisions with the eye of a scientist.

Lundquist’s bid for a seat on the City Council energized Democrats, environmentalists and progressive activists eager to win over a San Fernando Valley district long represented by Republicans.

But Lundquist ran into a buzz saw of opposition from some of City Hall’s most experienced players, including business groups, the police officers’ union and former council members who represented the northwest Valley for generations. All lined up behind longtime City Hall aide John Lee, who emerged victorious Wednesday.

Who knew that focusing on community issues instead of combating climate change and weaning the city off fossil fuels would be a winning platform in California?

Finally, residents of the #Resistance state that has sued the Trump administration more than 50 times have donated more money to the Trump 2020 campaign than to most Democratic candidates currently in the 2020 race.

Donald Trump raised $3.2m in California since the beginning of this year, according to campaign finance data analyzed by CalMatters, a not-for-profit news organization focused on California issues.

Trump beat out everybody in the field except for Senator Kamala Harris, who raised $7.5m, and Mayor Pete Buttigieg, who raised $5.1m. Harris, who is California’s junior senator, has been leading in donations from the state since launching her campaign in January.

Admittedly, the state has a long way to go to recover from the nadir of conservatism experienced in November 2018. However, these are some of the first hopeful signs I have seen in some time.

 
 
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