Pete Stark may lose in November -- to a Democrat

My congressman, Pete Stark, might lose in November – to another Democrat.

Because of California’s new strange primary election rules, the winners on Tuesday were two Democrats. Pete Stark, the incumbent who has been in office for 40 years and who is 80 years old got 42%. Eric Swalwell came in second with 36%. The Republican came in third with 22%,

This is a very Democratic district so in the past it was a foregone conclusion that whoever won the Democratic primary would win the general election. And that would be Stark. But now he’s in a real race. And frankly, I think that’s a good thing. This area could use some new representation but I could never vote for a Republican.

Are you in the same district that you were in two years ago? I just got a look at the map, and some of the changes are drastic - for example, what was Lynn Woolsey’s district used to cover just Marin and southern Sonoma counties, but now it extends pretty much up to the Oregon border. (This is nothing compared to the 1980s, when Phil Burton decided that San Rafael and Vallejo touched each other.)

For those of you unfamiliar with California’s new election law, all primaries except for President have all parties’ candidates on all of the ballots, and the top two advance to the runoff in November. (In “partisan” offices, there is no “automatic win” if you have a majority.)

I’m at the same location I was two years ago, which was in Pete Stark’s district then and is in the district he is running for now. However, it was the 13th Congressional District and now it is the 15th, and as you say the boundaries have shifted quite a lot. That’s another reason he’s not such a sure thing anymore.

On the one hand, I think this is a good way to do the primaries because it elinates the need to play to the party fringes in the primary and then tack to the middle. It gives moderates of both parties a better chance.

On the other hand, if it were adopted here, I’d probably never get another chance to vote for a Democrat in a general election. That would stink, so I’d better be right about it helping moderates.

Yeah, but on the other hand, you might get the opportunity to vote for a moderate Republican against an extreme Republican. And the moderate Republican may actually win, as opposed to the token Democrat that runs.

Yeah, that was what I meant at the end of my ‘second hand’… hopefully I’d at least have a moderate Republican to vote for. Although that’s like choosing a kick to the groin instead a sharp stick in the eye… :smiley:

I hope he does lose, if he’s 80 years old! Let us have no more Thurmonds.

This is a website that I think is unbiased. You can see that he really is 80 years old, and he has been in Congress for 20 terms:

Now I’m all in favor of having Democrats in power. So if it was a choice of Stark or a Republican I’d continue to vote for Stark. But I really would like to get another Dem in there.

Stark is also known as the first openly atheist member of Congress, which is why I know of him.

Whoa! You’ve seen one of those in the wild? I thought they’d all been either confined to zoos (or museums of ancient history) or put down by the party.

He’s the only openly atheist member of Congress and one of the most progressive in Congress FYI. Not to mention the various committie positions he gets.

I have no problem with the fact that he’s progressive, or that he’s an atheist.

But unfortunately, he’s also an arrogant jerk who loves to insult people. I just don’t like a person like him being my representative.