Politics

State senate special election approaching

Monday, May 20, 2013

Voters will soon decide who will fill the state senate seat in the 16th district.

Both candidates brought their campaign to Fresno over the weekend, since that's where most of the votes are.

"Fresno county is totally ready for this election tomorrow," Fresno County Clerk Brandi Orth said.

The 16th senate district covers most of Fresno south of Shields. Covering the western part of the county, all of Kings County, parts of Tulare County and a chunk of Bakersfield in Kern County.

About 15 thousand votes have already been cast by absentee ballot in Fresno County.

It's now too late to mail them in so the candidates are reminding voters to bring them to their polling place

"And now's the opportunity to get out there and remind them if you haven't cast your ballot bring it to the polling place on Tuesday or make sure you know where your polling place is on Tuesday," candidate Leticia Perez (D) said.

They can also be taken to the county clerk's office.

Voters can of course cast their ballots at their polling places on election day.

The two leading candidates are making a last minute push for their votes.

"We're talking to voters, we're knocking on doors, making phone calls and that's exciting, talking to a lot of voters," candidate Andy Vidak (R) said.

Republicans are facing an uphill climb. The district is predominantly Democratic but Vidak has name recognition.

Fresno State Political Science Professor Tom Holyoke predicts neither candidate will get enough votes to avoid a runoff election.

"I think Leticia Perez and Andy Vidak are going to go into another round, but I expect that tomorrow she will come out with an edge but not enough of an edge probably to win the whole thing outright," Vidak said.

Holyoke notes two other Democrats in the race, Francisco Ramirez of Riverdale and Pauline Miranda of Fresno, are not big factors in the race but are likely to siphon some votes from Perez.

Vidak is the only Republican. The fifth candidate is Bakersfield's Mohammad Arif of the Peace and Freedom Party.

(Copyright ©2014 KFSN-TV/DT. All Rights Reserved.)

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Tags:
fresno county, tulare county, kings county, politics, gene haagenson
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