OPINION: This article may contain commentary which reflects the author’s opinion.
An extremely close House race in California has been decided, and the GOP candidate managed to eke out a win, adding to the party’s majority in the chamber.
According to reports, Republican John Duarte won California’s 13th Congressional District after his Democratic rival, Adam Gray, conceded on Friday. Duarte won by only a few hundred votes, the Daily Wire noted.
In a statement posted to Twitter, Gray wrote, “After weeks of incredibly hard work by our election workers, the result has become clear. While I had hoped for a different outcome, I accept the results and have called to congratulate my opponent, John Duarte.”
There is no better place to grow up than in the Valley. It has been the greatest honor of my life to represent our community in the State Legislature. Whether elected or not, I will never stop fighting for the Valley. pic.twitter.com/xVQagl7MXx
— Adam C. Gray (@AdamGrayCA) December 3, 2022
He noted further that out of more than 130,000 ballots cast, Duarte would win by “just a few hundred votes.”
The Daily Wire adds:
Duarte, a farmer and businessman, will represent a district in the Central Valley. His campaign website pledges that he will “fight the high cost of living,” “protect our Valley water and farms,” and “fight for safer communities.”
Thanks to the 2020 census, California suffered a net loss of one seat in the House following the process of redistricting. Republicans will now hold 12 seats in California, up one from the current session, while Democrats will have 40 seats in the state, according to CNN. The 13th district, as it stands now, is held by Barbara Lee (D-CA). She will represent the 12th district in the next term.
There is one more House race outstanding — that of incumbent GOP Rep. Lauren Boebert of Colorado’s 3rd Congressional District. The initial outcome of her race against Adam Frisch was also separated by a few hundred votes and thus triggered an automatic recount under state election law. Boebert is ahead in that contest, and has already declared herself the winner. Frisch has conceded, as well.
“Adam Frisch called me to concede this race. I look forward to getting past election season and focusing on conservative governance in the House majority. Time to get to work!” Boebert noted on Twitter.
Adam Frisch called me to concede this race.
I look forward to getting past election season and focusing on conservative governance in the House majority.
Time to get to work!
— Lauren Boebert (@laurenboebert) November 18, 2022
In mid-November, Boebert also posted a video with the U.S. Capitol as her backdrop, declaring victory but also acknowledging that her race was incredibly tight.
“I’m told that there are less than 200 votes outstanding, which makes me so happy to announce we have won this race!” she said. “With this victory and with Republicans in control of the House of Representatives, we can focus on the issues that actually matter most, including getting inflation under control, increasing our domestic energy supply, securing the southern border, and being a strong check on the White House.”
“Now, over the next couple of weeks, this race will have an automatic recount, which will be completed in early December,” she said. “My campaign team and our lawyers will definitely make sure everything is conducted properly. Past recounts in Colorado have resulted in far fewer votes being adjusted than anything that could affect the current outcome we’re seeing tonight in this race.”
“So come January, you can be certain of two things. I will be sworn in for my second term as your congresswoman, and Republicans can finally turn Pelosi’s House back into the People’s House,” the representative said.
“Thank you to every volunteer that made calls, knocked on doors, and, of course, to each of you that is entrusted me with your vote. I am honored to be your representative. I pray for you, and I am so grateful for you. God bless you tonight,” she said.
The lead candidate to replace outgoing House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) is another California Republican, Kevin McCarthy. While some conservatives have voiced support for new leadership, at this juncture, McCarthy appears on pace to take the gavel from Pelosi in early December when the new Congress is sworn in.
McCarthy has already vowed to make a number of changes, including reopening portions of the Capitol Building that Pelosi kept closed to the public following the Jan. 6 riot nearly two years ago.
He also vowed to restore an old tradition that was ditched years ago.
“On the very first day of the new Republican-led Congress, we will read every single word of the Constitution aloud from the floor of the House—something that hasn’t been done in years,” he declared late last month.