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Democratic State Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi and former Torrance Mayor Frank Scotto will continue on to November’s General Election in their race to represent the South Bay in California’s 66th Assembly District, following Tuesday’s California Primary Election.
Muratsuchi, the incumbent, emerged as the top vote-getter, receiving 29,934 votes for 49.04 percent of ballots. Scotto trailed with 27,566 votes, for 45.16 percent of all votes cast. Democrat Caney Arnold rounded out the race, receiving 3,546 votes.
Scotto’s headquarters hosted his election night watch party. While his own race was important, he paid particular attention to Torrance’s municipal City Council and Mayoral elections, as well as the California Governor’s race. For him, it’s about strategy.
“It’s going to help significantly to get the Republican vote out with a Republican at the top of the ticket,” Scotto said of governor candidate John Cox, who will challenge Democrat Gavin Newsom for California’s top office. “In addition, having the gas tax on the ballot will mobilize conservative people as well.”
He’s hoping to press the message of local control, looking to mobilize that idea amongst residents of Gardena and Lomita, as well as fighting measures pushed by Sacramento.
“The state is taking too much local control away. It’s important that we let people have their voice in those elections, and it’s sad that the state believes they have the ability to make those decisions. We’ve got to change that.”
Muratsuchi made an appearance at Red Car Brewery in Old Town Torrance, where he joined the election night party of Torrance Mayor Pat Furey, though he left before long to return to Sacramento.
“I’m very happy with the primary results, especially if you add the votes cast for myself and [Arnold],” Muratsuchi said. “I’m feeling very confident that we will be in a strong position moving on to November.”
After acknowledging that Arnold supporters may have been seeking an alternative “to send a message,” Muratsuchi said that South Bay voters will have a clear choice between him and a “conservative ideologue” in Scotto.
“I think overall, voters are sending a clear message that they don’t just want to see California leading the resistance against [President Donald Trump], but they’re recognizing we’re doing great things for the state of California,” Muratsuchi said.
Arnold did not respond to a request for comment by press time.
The General Election is on Nov. 6.