Early returns show tight race to fill Senate seat

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Associated Press

Posted on July 24, 2013 at 9:04 AM

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — Early returns in the special election to fill a San Joaquin Valley state Senate seat show the two candidates in a tight race.

With about half the precincts reporting Tuesday night, Republican Andy Vidak had 54.7 percent to Democrat Leticia Perez's 45.3 percent. They are competing to fill a vacancy in the 16th Senate District.

Democrats are hoping to hold the seat to protect their supermajority status, prompting a flood of candidate campaign contributions and independent expenditures. Each side reported roughly $2 million in donations.

The district includes all of Kings County and portions of Fresno, Kern and Tulare counties.

Returns were just beginning to trickle in for Tuesday's other legislative special election, a primary in the 52nd Assembly District covering parts of Los Angeles and San Bernardino counties.

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