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Ballot Count Update: Republican Mike Garcia Expands His Lead In CA25. The Margin Is Still Razor-Thin

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These results will be continually updated as votes are counted. Last updated on Tuesday, November 17 at 5:15 PM.

Two weeks after the close of polls on Nov. 3, the race for California’s 25th congressional district remains too close to call.

With the addition of Los Angeles and Ventura County’s latest ballot count, released Tuesday afternoon, incumbent Republican Rep. Mike Garcia now leads Democratic Assemblymember Christy Smith by 422 votes. His thin margin has widened by a couple hundred votes since last week.

The district is mostly in north Los Angeles County — including Porter Ranch, Santa Clarita and the Antelope Valley cities of Palmdale and Lancaster — but also has a portion of eastern Ventura County that includes Simi Valley. Almost four times as many votes were cast in L.A. County, but Garcia’s advantage in the more conservative Ventura County is providing his lead.

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If Garcia keeps his seat it will be another victory for Republicans, who already flipped two Orange County districts that had turned blue in 2018.

[Read more about the issues animating this congressional race, and the recent history of the 25th District.]

Thanks to a deadline extension approved by a California legislature anticipating possible COVID-19 complications, ballots that were postmarked by Election Day will still be counted if they arrive by Friday. Ventura County will release its next canvassing update on Thursday; L.A.’s next update is scheduled for Friday.

With Tuesday's update, L.A. County turnout sits at a bit over 75% of registered voters. That number should rise as more of the estimated 66,245 outstanding ballots are counted.

Most of those outstanding ballots are mail-in ballots that have reached the county registrar after election day, and “conditional registrations” -- often people who registered to vote and cast a ballot on the same day. Those votes take extra time to count because election officials must verify each voter’s eligibility.

The complete turnout picture won’t become clear until the post-election canvass (or counting) is over and the election is certified. The Secretary of State will certify the entire vote statewide by Dec. 11.

If you want to visually compare participation rates so far, USC’s Center For Inclusive Democracy has an interactive map of turnout per precinct in L.A. County. You’ll notice a pattern of higher turnout in wealthier parts of the county -- including Pasadena and West L.A.


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