Jared Huffman, Dale Mensing and I have faced off before, in 2014. Two years later, I didn’t run but two others faced off against Jared and Dale. There are some very promising numbers that have developed over the last four years!
In California, candidates of all parties and independents run against each other only in the June primary. The top two in that contest move forward to the November contest.
In 2014, I was one of two Democrats running against one Republican. Most voters didn’t think about the race until they went to vote. Since Dale was the only name with an (R) after it, he was guaranteed about 25% of the vote. It broke down like this:
When Dale faced off alone against Huffman in November 2014 he barely bumped up at all:
In November 2016, Dale did worse than in his first run:
Dale was even less popular than Trump who was able to get 29.1% in Mendocino County and 31% in Humboldt County.
I can’t imagine him not doing even worse in 2018.
In the 2016 primary Dale did worse against a Greenish young Democratic activist and an independent.
In 2014, the non-Huffman votes were:
*which was higher than any other Green, Libertarian, or independent running anywhere In California for state or federal office!
Erin Schrode (D) 9.1%
Matthew Wookey (I) 7.0%
If Erin and Matthew were one candidate that candidate would have beat Dale into the top two with 16.2% of the vote over his 15.7%.
So if I could just get Erin’s and Matthew’s vote this time, I would make the top two and we would have the first Congressional battle in U.S. history between someone with truly green politics and a status quo Democrat–without any Republican competition.
Who would the Republicans vote for in November? A Hillary Superdelegate status quo Pelosi liberal Democrat from Marin County in the Bay Area? Or an independent Green Sanders candidate local community support and forest activist from the rural north coast who is running as a registered Democrat but has no allegiance to the party leadership whatsoever?
Regardless of how the Republicans vote, what is likely to determine the outcome in November is whether or not the Democrats in the district go Sanders or go Clinton in the Congressional race. Clinton-Huffman or Sanders-Caffrey?
If it goes like the district divided between Hillary and Bernie, then it looks like CA-2 in 2018 is going to elect the first green to Congress in American history, because in 2016, CA-2 went:
Bernie Sanders 53.1% (Caffrey)
Hillary Clinton 46.3% (Huffman)