List of special elections to the California State Senate

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Special elections to the California State Senate are called by the Governor of California when a vacancy arises within the State Senate. Most special elections are conducted in two rounds. The first is an open primary and the candidate with the most votes must have a majority of the votes plus one to win the seat. If no candidate wins a majority, a second round is held with the top candidates for each party.

Recall elections, the process by which voters petition for the removal of an elected official, are also included.

List of special elections[edit]

The dates listed indicate the time of the final election, either a runoff election or the open primary round if no second round was held.

District Date Predecessor Winner
33 October 3, 1961 James McBride (D) Robert Lagomarsino (R)
31 February 13, 1962 John Hollister (R) Alvin Weingand (D)
5 March 16, 1965 Edwin Regan (D) Fred Marler (R)
9 August 15, 1967 Gene McAteer (D) Milton Marks (R)
7 March 25, 1969 George Miller (D) John Nejedly (R)
34 August 18, 1970 John Schmitz (R) Dennis Carpenter (R)
27 July 20, 1971 George Danielson (D) David Roberti (D)
36 June 6, 1972 Gordon Cologne (R) W. Craig Biddle (R)
22 February 27, 1973 Tom Carrell (D) Alan Robbins (D)
38 March 6, 1973 Clair Burgener (R) John Stull (R)
20 January 15, 1974 William Coombs (R) Ruben Ayala (D)
24 July 2, 1974 Robert Lagomarsino (R) Omer Rains (D)
29 April 1, 1975 Mervyn Dymally (D) Bill Greene (D)
6 June 8, 1976 George Moscone (D) John Foran (D)
22 March 8, 1977 Anthony Beilenson (D) Alan Sieroty (D)
31 April 17, 1979 George Deukmejian (R) Ollie Speraw (R)
14 June 9, 1979 George Zenovich (D) Kenneth Maddy (R)
12 June 5, 1980 Jerry Smith (D) Dan O'Keefe (R)
35 April 13, 1982 John Briggs (R) John Seymour (R)
33 May 12, 1987 Paul Carpenter (D) Cecil Green (D)
39 December 5, 1989 Larry Stirling (R) Lucy Killea (D)
31 April 10, 1990 Bill Campbell (R) Frank Hill (R)
26 April 10, 1990 Joseph Montoya (D) Charles Calderon (D)
5 January 8, 1991 John Garamendi (D) Patrick Johnston (D)
1 May 14, 1991 John Doolittle (R) Tim Leslie (R)
35 May 14, 1991 John Seymour (R) John Lewis (R)
20 June 2, 1992 Alan Robbins (D) David Roberti (D)
32 March 2, 1993 Ed Royce (R) Rob Hurtt (R)
2 April 27, 1993 Barry Keene (D) Mike Thompson (D)
16 April 27, 1993 Don Rogers (R) Phil Wyman (R)
4 November 2, 1993 Mike Thompson (D) Maurice Johannessen (R)
11 November 2, 1993 Becky Morgan (R) Tom Campbell (R)
40 December 28, 1993 Wadie Deddeh (D) Steve Peace (D)
29 November 8, 1994 Frank Hill (R) Dick Mountjoy (R)
35 May 9, 1995 Marian Bergeson (R) Ross Johnson (R)
11 March 26, 1996 Tom Campbell (R) Byron Sher (D)
9 September 1, 1998 Barbara Lee (D) Don Perata (D)
32 March 7, 2000 Joe Baca (D) Nell Soto (D)
24 March 6, 2001 Hilda Solis (D) Gloria Romero (D)
35 June 6, 2006 John Campbell (R) Tom Harman (R)
26 May 19, 2009 Mark Ridley-Thomas (D) Curren Price (D)
37 June 8, 2010 John Benoit (R) Bill Emmerson (R)
15 August 17, 2010 Abel Maldonado (R) Sam Blakeslee (R)
1 January 4, 2011 Dave Cox (R) Ted Gaines (R)
17 February 15, 2011 George Runner (R) Sharon Runner (R)
28 February 15, 2011 Jenny Oropeza (D) Ted Lieu (D)
4 January 8, 2013 Doug LaMalfa (R) Jim Nielsen (R)
40 March 2, 2013 Juan Vargas (D) Ben Hueso (D)
32 May 14, 2013 Gloria Negrete McLeod (D) Norma Torres (D)
16 July 23, 2013 Michael Rubio (D) Andy Vidak (R)
26 September 17, 2013 Curren Price (D) Holly Mitchell (D)
23 March 25, 2014 Bill Emmerson (R) Mike Morrell (R)

List of recall elections[edit]

When applicable, the candidate who succeeded the recalled state senator is listed. If the recall election was not successful the winner is listed as "none".

District Date State senator Winner
20 April 12, 1994 David Roberti (D) None
12 June 3, 2008 Jeff Denham (R) None

Results[edit]

4th district special election, 2013[edit]

California SD-04.svg
California's 4th State Senate district special election, 2013
Vacancy resulting from the resignation of Doug LaMalfa
Primary election
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Jim Nielsen 188,207 49.8%
Democratic Michael "Mickey" Harrington 104,572 27.7%
Republican Dan Logue 43,303 11.5%
No party preference Jann Reed 24,966 6.6%
No party preference Dan Levine 9,882 2.6%
No party preference Benjamin "Ben" Emery 7,146 1.9%
Totals 378,076 100.0%
General election
Republican Jim Nielsen 97,849 66.6%
Democratic Michael "Mickey" Harrington 49,004 33.4%
Totals 146,853 100.0%
Republican hold

40th district special election, 2013[edit]

California SD-40.svg
California's 40th State Senate district special election, 2013
Vacancy resulting from the resignation of Juan Vargas
Primary election
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Ben Hueso 29,367 53.1%
Republican Hector Raul Gastelum 11,951 21.6%
Republican Xanthi Gionis 8,243 14.9%
Democratic Anna Nevenic 5,740 10.4%
Democratic Craig Fiegener (write-in) 39 0.1%
Democratic Rafael Estrada (write-in) 20 0.0%
Totals 55,360 100.0%
Democratic hold

32nd district special election, 2013[edit]

California SD-32.svg
California's 32nd State Senate district special election, 2013
Vacancy resulting from the resignation of Gloria Negrete McLeod
Primary election
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Norma Torres 15,021 44.0%
Republican Paul S. Leon 8,961 26.4%
Democratic Larry Walker 4,620 13.6%
Democratic Joanne T. Gilbert 2,327 6.9%
Republican Kenny Coble 2,178 6.4%
Democratic Paul Vincent Avila 845 2.5%
Totals 33,952 100.0%
General election
Democratic Norma Torres 21,251 59.6%
Republican Paul S. Leon 14,432 40.4%
Totals 35,683 100.0%
Democratic hold

16th district special election, 2013[edit]

California SD-16.svg
California's 16th State Senate district special election, 2013
Vacancy resulting from the resignation of Michael Rubio
Primary election
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Andy Vidak 31,610 49.8%
Democratic Leticia Perez 27,854 43.9%
Democratic Francisco "Frank" Ramirez 1,890 3.0%
Democratic Paulina Miranda 1,623 2.6%
Peace and Freedom Mohammed "O" Arif 471 0.7%
Totals 63,448 100.0%
General election
Republican Andy Vidak 42,224 51.9%
Democratic Leticia Perez 39,140 48.1%
Totals 81,364 100.0%
Republican gain from Democratic

26th district special election, 2013[edit]

California SD-26.svg
California's 26th State Senate district special election, 2013
Vacancy resulting from the resignation of Curren Price
Primary election
Party Candidate Votes %
Democratic Holly Mitchell 19,481 81.0%
Democratic Mervin Evans 4,579 19.0%
Totals 24,060 100.0%
Democratic hold

23rd district special election, 2014[edit]

California SD-23 (2011).svg
California's 23rd State Senate district special election, 2014
Vacancy resulting from the resignation of Bill Emmerson
Primary election
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Mike Morrell 43,447 62.6%
Democratic Ronald J. O'Donnell 10,531 15.2%
Democratic Ameenah Fuller 6,705 9.7%
Libertarian Jeff Hewitt 4,479 6.5%
Republican Crystal Ruiz 4,187 6.0%
Totals 69,349 100.0%
Republican hold

References[edit]