By The Associated Press
All 80 seats up for grabs in the California Assembly and half the 40 Senate positions, but the interest is focused most intensely on a handful of races with the potential to alter the balance of power in Capitol.
Among the most interesting legislative races:
Senate District 3
Republican-turned-Democrat Bill Dodd faces Assembly colleague and fellow Democrat Mariko Yamada.
Senate District 5
Sen. Cathleen Galgiani, a moderate Democrat from Stockton, is seen as the most vulnerable Democrat in the Senate. But Republican rivals struggled to keep pace with her fundraising in the primary and she won 57 percent of primary votes in the Central Valley district. Republican Alan Nakanishi, a physician and businessman, won 28 percent to face Galgiani in November.
Senate District 9
Democrats Nancy Skinner and Sandre Swanson will compete for the open Oakland seat after Skinner won 48 percent to Swanson’s 31 percent in June.
Senate District 11
San Francisco supervisors Jane Kim and Scott Wiener, both Democrats, are competing for the seat of termed-out Sen. Mark Leno in the liberal enclave. Kim won with fewer than 700 votes after an endorsement from Bernie Sanders gave her a last-minute boost, but Wiener has backing from Democrats in the Legislature.
Senate District 15
Assemblywoman Nora Campos will attempt to unseat Sen. Jim Beall, another Democrat from San Jose, in the east San Francisco Bay Area district. Beall won nearly 50 percent of the primary votes; Campos got 27 percent.
Senate District 35
Democrats Steven Bradford and Warren Furutani will face one another in southern Los Angeles County.
Assembly District 14
Republican-turned-Democrat Tim Grayson faces a more liberal rival in Mae Torlakson following one of the most expensive primary races for a legislative seat. Half of registered voters identify with the Democratic Party in the northeast San Francisco Bay Area district.
Assembly District 16
Republican Catharine Baker of Dublin, who won her Democratic east San Francisco Bay Area seat in an upset two years ago, faces a challenge from Democrat Cheryl Cook-Kallio. Mindful of her district’s partisan leanings, Baker emphasizes her support for abortion rights and has sided with Democrats on issues such as gun control. Cook-Kallio is focusing on traffic and early education.
Assembly District 24
Two Democrats, Mark Berman and Vicki Veenker, advanced from an eight-candidate primary contest for the Palo Alto-area district.
Assembly District 36
Former Democratic Assemblyman Steve Fox, ousted by Republican Tom Lackey of Palmdale in 2014, easily best two other Democrats in the primary to emerge for a November rematch in the slightly Democratic-leaning district. Fox’s campaign will struggle to overcome the $110,000 settlement the Assembly paid to resolve a lawsuit from a former employee.
Assembly District 47
Assemblywoman Cheryl Brown, D-San Bernardino, faces a challenge from fellow Democrat Eloise Reyes in a costly battle pitting an incumbent moderate against a liberal financed by environmental groups and activists for stricter gun laws. Their primary race drew more than $2 million in independent expenditures and is expected to be one of the most closely watched elections this November.
Assembly District 43
The two best-funded candidates, both Democrats, advanced from a pool of eight contenders in this northern Los Angeles County district. Laura Friedman, who drew more than $1 million in independent expenditures from environmentalists, women’s groups and charter school advocates, will take on Ardy Kassakhian, who was bankrolled largely by labor unions and local school boards.
Assembly District 39
Former Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra hopes to return to the statehouse by unseating fellow Democrat Patty Lopez, who ousted him in a narrow victory two years ago. Bocanegra received the party’s endorsement earlier this year and won 44 percent to Lopez’s 27 percent in June.
Assembly District 65
Assemblywoman Young Kim, R-Fullerton, lost the primary by nine percentage points to Democrat Sharon Quirk-Silva in an Orange County district where registered Democrats slightly outnumber Republicans, but 24 percent of voters claim no party preference. Kim’s seat presents one of the best pickup opportunities for Democrats.
Assembly District 66
In another do-or-die district for Republicans, Assemblyman David Hadley, R-Torrance, was bested by two percentage points in June by the Democrat he ousted from the southwest Los Angeles County seat in 2014. Former Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi of Torrance will face Hadley again in November in a district where Democrats narrowly outpace Republicans in registration.