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Special Elections Aim To Fill 2 California Senate Seats

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – Voters in two California legislative districts are picking new senators to fill vacancies created by last fall’s statewide election. The special primary elections Tuesday aim to fill the seats formerly held by Democrat Ricardo Lara, who was elected insurance commissioner, and Republican Ted Gaines, who won a seat on the Board of Equalization. Six candidates, including two Republican assemblymen, are on the ballot to succeed Gaines in the massive northeastern 1st Senate District, which stretches from Oregon to south of Lake Tahoe. One of the Democrats on the ballot, Steve Baird, dropped out of the race after the ballot was already certified. The 1st District race has are four Republicans and one Democrat, Silke Pflueger. A dozen hopefuls want to follow Lara in representing the 33rd Senate District in southeast Los Angeles County. Runoffs won’t be needed if any candidate wins more than half the vote. Otherwise, the top two vote-getters will advance to a June 4 special general election, no matter their political party.