Two candidates – Democrat Steve Padilla and Republican Alejandro Galicia – are on the primary ballot to represent Senate District 18 in the California Legislature, meaning both are likely to qualify for November’s general election. unless a last minute written candidate emerges.
The Coachella Valley was previously in a single Senate district, but that changed as a result of California’s redistricting process in 2021. This year, residents of Indio, Coachella and most of the east of Riverside County will vote in Senate District 18, which also encompasses southern San Diego County, all of Imperial County and eastern San Bernardino County.
Voters in the new Senatorial District 19, which includes Palm Springs, Cathedral City, Desert Hot Springs, Palm Desert, La Quinta, Rancho Mirage and Indian Wells, will not decide their senator until 2024.
In addition to his endorsement from the California Democratic Party, Chula Vista City Councilman Padilla also has the backing of Assemblyman Eduardo Garcia, D-Coachella and Rep. Juan Vargas, D-San Diego, as well as from groups such as Equality California. and the Latin California Legislative Caucus.
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Galicia, a veteran CEO and advocate who has the backing of the California Republican Party, didn’t get many other major mentions. He listed his top three priorities as tackling soaring fuel prices, finding solutions to make housing more affordable for young families, and funding law enforcement.
Padilla has run his campaign with a major cash benefit, raising around $143,000 in campaign contributions so far this year. Galicia did not report receiving any input from the California Secretary of State’s office.
The top two in the primary election – regardless of party – will qualify for the state’s general election on November 8, meaning Padilla and Galicia will likely be heading for a final showdown later this year.
This is a developing story and will be updated.