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State Senate: Padilla, Blakespear Ahead in Open Seats; Incumbent Jones Has Narrow Lead

PoliticsState Senate: Padilla, Blakespear Ahead in Open Seats; Incumbent Jones Has Narrow Lead

Brian Jones speaks on election night. Photo by Chris Stone

Former Chula Vista Mayor Steve Padilla and Encinitas Mayor Catherine Blakespear led in early returns for open state Senate seats, while incumbent Sen. Brian Jones had a narrow margin over a Democratic challenger.

Padilla, a Democrat, heads to a runoff in November with 64% of the early vote to Republican challenger Alejandro Galicia’s 36%.

“I am excited that voters all across Southern California strongly supported our campaign and believe in our vision of rebuilding opportunity for California’s working families,” Padilla said. “I’m ready to win in November and keep up the fight to rebuild economic opportunity for all Californians.”

Blakespear, a Democrat, led Republican auto dealer Matt Gunderson by 48% to 41% and will face him in a November runoff.

The race was tighter for incumbent Brian Jones, a Republican who led Democratic challenger Joseph Rocha by 52% to 48%.

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