Californians were able to cast their election votes earlier than usual, joining in with 13 other states and American Samoa for “Super Tuesday” on March 3.

It was a super day especially for Joe Biden, who on Monday, gained endorsements from three democrats who dropped out of the race. At press time, Biden was declared the victor in nine Super Tuesday states; Sanders had four; and although Bloomberg won American Samoa along with some delegates from other states, on Wednesday morning he decided to end his campaign.

There were 415 delegates at stake in California. At this writing, state democrats voted their preference for Bernie Sanders, who gained 38.20 percent of the votes. Biden came away with 27.04 percent. Elizabeth Warren drew 12.12 percent of Tuesday’s democratic votes and dropped out of the race Thursday morning.

Biden the ‘comeback kid’

“I’m here to report we are very much alive,” Biden said at a Tuesday night rally held in Baldwin Hills. “Make no mistake about it, this campaign will send Donald Trump packing. This campaign is taking off.”

Sanders has not conceded, though, and spoke in Vermont on Tuesday.

“Tonight I tell you with absolute confidence we are gonna win the Democratic nomination and we are going to defeat the most dangerous president in the history of this country,” Sanders said.

Dr. Manuel Pastor, a professor of Sociology and American Studies and Ethnicity at USC, watched the campaigns closely. His research has generally focused on issues of the economic, environmental and social conditions facing low-income urban communities and the social movements seeking to change those realities.

“While ‘Super Tuesday’ breathed renewed life into Biden’s campaign, California continued to be a state of resistance,” Pastor said. “The endorsements mattered and I think the South Carolina victory for Biden made it clearer that he has the ability to make inroads to the southern part of the Black vote.”

Pastor believes that if Biden ultimately wins the nomination, there may be less financial giving from the pro-Sanders, progressive Californians toward November’s election, even though the Trump presidency is seen as a crisis.

“We have a president who is refusing to deal with police brutality,” Pastor said. “He doesn’t talk about White supremacy. His tactics and politics on immigration make him an existential threat to Latinos.”

Pastor believes that California will play a huge role as both campaigns move toward the convention.

“I think in California, Sanders won, not handily but impressively,” the professor said. “As America’s most populated state, the continuing divergence between what Californians desire and what the rest of America votes for is both striking and worrisome.”

25th Congressional District

In the race for California’s 25th Congressional District, Democrat Christy Smith and Republican Mike Garcia will square off in a May 12 special election runoff to fill out the remainder of Rep. Katie Hill’s term. The two will meet again in a November runoff for the right to fill the seat for the next two years.

Smith and Garcia finished one-two in Tuesday’s special election to fill out Hill’s term, with Republican Steve Knight, who lost the seat to Hill, finishing third.

Confusing matters in the district that stretches from the Antelope Valley into Ventura County was the fact that voters had to cast ballots twice—once in a special election to fill the balance of Hill’s term that lasts through the end of the year, and again in a primary election to fill the seat for the next two years. The major candidates seeking the office appeared on both ballots.

Smith would have had to win more than 50 percent of the vote in the special election to win the seat outright to finish out Hill’s term.

The special election was instigated by Hill’s resignation amid the release of salacious photos online and allegations of an extramarital affair with a staff member.

The 25th District is one of several ranging from the Antelope Valley to Orange County in which Republicans hoped to regain a foothold after a series of defeats in 2018.

Smith was endorsed by many of the area’s biggest Democratic, names and by the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. Her campaign website touts a variety of priority issues, led by improving public education, ending “corruption in Washington,” boosting support for first-responders and ensuring access to affordable health care.

Garcia is a former Navy pilot who said he was inspired to vie for the post because Hill “did not represent our moderate district. I have the choice to stand on the sidelines and see what happens but that is not in my DNA. This is an extension of my desire to serve, this time to fight for my district.”

Also this week, Los Angeles County Supervisor Kathryn Barger was reelected to a second term on the board.

The Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder’s office said more than 20 percent of eligible registered voters cast ballots. By Wednesday morning, more than 1,137,023 ballots had been processed and counted. Once the provisional and vote by mail ballots are verified they will be counted. For updates on the election results, visit www.lavote.net.

Long lines at Voting Centers

Some voters stood in line for hours and were not able to cast their votes until after midnight, due to technical problems at some Voting Centers. The registrar’s office is looking to reassess and improve the new voting experience in LA County, as accessibility, equipment and Voting Center issues need to be addressed before November.

To avoid a runoff election in November, candidates will have to win more than 50 percent of the vote. On Wednesday, the leading vote-getters included the following:

In the L.A. County District Attorney race:

• Jackie Lacey had 50.14 percent of the vote at press time.

• George Gascon had 27.22 percent

• Rachel A. Rossi had 22.64 percent

Measure 13

• YES vote received 52.84 percent of the vote so far

• NO vote had 47.16 percent

Measure R

• YES vote received 71.60 percent of the vote so far

• NO vote had 28.40 percent

Measure FD

• YES vote received 52.62 percent of the vote so far

• NO vote had 47.38 percent

L.A. County Superior Court Judge Seat #162

• Scott Andrew Yang received 49.69 percent of the vote so far

• David D. Diamond, 30.17 percent

• Caree Annette Harper, 20.14 percent

Merdies Hayes contributed to this story.