Republican Andy Vidak (VY-dack) has pulled ahead of Democrat Leticia Perez by about six thousand votes in the 16th Senate District contest. With all precincts reporting, Vidak has 54 percent of the vote to Perez’s 46 percent.
But there are still thousands of late vote-by-mail and provisional ballots to count in Kings, Fresno, Kern and Tulare counties. Vidak and Perez are vying to finish out the term of Democrat Michael Rubio, who resigned unexpectedly earlier this year to take a job with Chevron. If Republicans capture the seat, Democrats will still have a supermajority in the Senate – but just barely.
Supporters of both candidates have spent millions on the race, with Democrats trying to protect their power, and Republicans seeing an opportunity to weaken it.