Special California Election to Replace US Rep. Nunes Heads to June Runoff

By Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber
Reporter
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. and world news. He is based in Maryland.
April 7, 2022 Updated: April 7, 2022

The race to fill the U.S. House of Representatives seat left vacant by Devin Nunes is heading to a runoff in June after no candidates reached the required threshold.

Connie Conway, a Republican who used to be a member of the California State Assembly, earned approximately 35 percent of the vote in the April 5 election, according to unofficial results.

Lourin Hubbard, a Democrat and a manager at the state Department of Water Resources, was in second with nearly 20 percent of the votes, but two other candidates—Democrat Eric Garcia and Republican Matt Stoll—had 15 percent.

The results are set to be certified on April 14.

To win the race without a runoff, a candidate has to receive 50 percent or more of the votes.

Only two candidates will advance to the runoff, which is slated to take place on June 7.

Nunes, a farmer who began representing California’s 22nd Congressional District in 2013, resigned from Congress on Jan. 3 to head former President Donald Trump’s new media platform.

Nunes has not given an endorsement to any of the candidates vying to replace him.

“It’s best that I just stay out,” Nunes said in a radio interview. “There is no reason for me to engage in politics. May the best person win.”

Epoch Times Photo
California Assembly Minority Leader Connie Conway speaks in Sacramento, Calif., in a 2014 file photograph. (Rich Pedroncelli/AP Photo)

Conway, who landed an endorsement from Fresno County Republican Party, was appointed by Trump to a position running programs at the U.S. Department of Agriculture in California. She is described on her campaign website as a lifelong Valley resident, wife, mother, and public servant, with her accomplishments including helping set up a Rainy Day fund while an assemblywoman.

Hubbard describes himself as a progressive and has championed Black Lives Matter, showing a picture on his site of himself and his wife holding signs with slogans derived from the movement following the killing of George Floyd.

Garcia is a military veteran who ran in part on opposition to Nunes’ work in Congress.

“I want to thank everyone that supported me for the special election but I did not make the top two. This doesn’t stop me from wanting to represent my community in the new district during the regular election,” Garcia said in a statement.

Stoll, a business owner and veteran, has not yet reacted to the vote.

The district was redrawn as part of redistricting. The updated district is dramatically altered and Rep. Jim Costa (D-Calif.) is planning to run for the adjusted seat in the upcoming midterm elections. Costa currently represents California’s 21st Congressional District.

The winner of the runoff will serve until January, unless they also win in November.

Zachary Stieber
Zachary Stieber covers U.S. and world news. He is based in Maryland.