Campbell leads pack in race to replace Cox, but must face a December runoff

For Republican Sen. John Campbell, that move to Washington is on hold for at
least a few more weeks. Campbell finished first in a field of 17 candidates
in the special election to succeed former Congressman Chris Cox. But
Campbell finished with less than 50 percent of the vote, forcing a Dec. 6
run-off election.

Campbell received more than 46 percent of the vote Tuesday. Former
Assemblywoman Marilyn Brewer received 17 percent of the vote. Minutemen
founder James Gilchrist, running as an American Independent, received 14
percent of the vote.

Campbell and Gilchrist will square off in the Dec. 6 runoff election, along
with Democrat Steve Young, Libertarian Bruce Cohen and Green Party candidate
Bea Tiritilli.

The seat has been vacant since Aug. 2, when Cox resigned to become chairman
of the Securities and Exchange Commission.

The 48th Congressional District, has more than 400,000 voters, but only
80,000 votes were cast Tuesday. The district, which includes Newport Beach
and San Juan Capistrano, is considered safe Republican territory.

Republicans have a nearly 2-1 registration advantage over Democrats in the

Campbell earned the support from most mainstream conservatives. Brewer ran
to Campbell’s left as a moderate Republican, while Gilchrist used his
anti-illegal immigration credentials to focus on his issue in the race.

Campbell received a rare primary endorsement from Gov. Arnold
Schwarzenegger. Campbell had been involved in drafting early versions of the
measure that is now Proposition 76, the governor’s state spending limit
initiative on the November special election ballot.

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