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Tags: california | adam schiff | steve garvey | runoff | baseball | poll | donald trump
CORRESPONDENT

California GOP Thinks Baseball Great Garvey Will Slide Into Senate Runoff

John Gizzi By Thursday, 29 February 2024 09:47 PM EST Current | Bio | Archive

With five days to go before the California primary, Golden State Republicans are — to use former President Ronald Reagan's phrase — "cautiously optimistic" that baseball legend and GOP hopeful Steve Garvey will secure the second position in the "jungle primary" and thus go into a November runoff with Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff, the likely top vote-getter.

According to the latest Emerson College Polling/Inside California Politics/The Hill California poll, Schiff tops the field among likely voters statewide with 28%, followed by Garvey, onetime first baseman for the Los Angeles Dodgers and San Diego Padres, with 20%. Two other Democrats, Reps. Katie Porter and Barbara Lee, trailed behind with 17% and 8% respectively.

Under California law, all candidates regardless of party appear on the same primary ballot. Should no one win a majority, the two top vote-getters will meet in a November runoff.

"Steve Garvey will certainly make it to the runoff with a decent chance to come in No. 1," a clearly excited Shawn Steel, California's Republican National committeeman, told Newsmax.

In recent weeks, Schiff has sent out mailings noting that self-styled moderate Republican Garvey twice voted for Donald Trump for president. This can be a powerful attack in a state that voted heavily against Trump in 2016 and 2020 and that last elected a Republican to the Senate in 1988.

But Steel believes "it's hard to make a nasty attack against Garvey and make it stick. Steve is one of the nicest guys to run for statewide office in years."

There has been some concern about Garvey's middle-road strategy, but even skeptics are confident he will get to the runoff.

"Garvey is trying to stay as general as possible so as to attract support from independents without losing the Republican base," said Dan Schnur, professor at the University of California, Berkeley's Institute of Governmental Studies and top aide to former California Gov. Pete Wilson, a Republican. "That may be enough to get him through the primary, but he will need to get more specific if he makes the runoff."

Luke Nichter, a professor at California's Chapman University and author of the critically acclaimed "The Year That Broke Politics," told us, "Running as a Republican in a de facto one-party Democrat state like California with less than a $1 million against a combined war chest about 50 times larger is like having an 0-2 count in the bottom of the 9th, down 10 runs, and sparking the rally that leads to a comeback win.

"Can Steve Garvey pull it off, or at least make it to the runoff and keep things interesting? Yes, but no college-age person in my classroom has seen a Republican from California in the U.S. Senate in their lifetime."

John Gizzi is chief political columnist and White House correspondent for Newsmax. For more of his reports, Go Here Now.

© 2024 Newsmax. All rights reserved.


John-Gizzi
With five days to go before the California primary, Golden State Republicans are "cautiously optimistic" that GOP hopeful Steve Garvey will secure the second position in the "jungle primary" and thus go into a November runoff with Democrat Rep. Adam Schiff.
california, adam schiff, steve garvey, runoff, baseball, poll, donald trump
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2024-47-29
Thursday, 29 February 2024 09:47 PM
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