Filing deadline closes; special election for 25th Congressional District still open

A polling place worker hands a sticker to a voter after he completed his ballot at Fire Station 73 in Newhall in November. Katharine Lotze/Signal

The filing deadline to run for state and federal offices in California came Friday as the March 3 primary election approaches, but those interested in running for the special election to temporarily fill the vacant 25th Congressional District seat still have some time. 

After the 5 p.m. deadline, a total of five Republicans, seven Democrats and two with a no-party preference filed to fill the new, two-year term in the 25th Congressional District, which represents the Santa Clarita, Simi and Antelope valleys. 

Republican runners vying to turn the district seat red once again after having lost it to Democrat Rep. Katie Hill in 2018 include former Republican Rep. Steve Knight, who announced his candidacy in November; Mike Garcia, a former naval officer and current executive at Raytheon Co.; and George Papadopolous, a former Donald Trump aide. 

Democrat candidate include Assemblywoman Christy Smith, D-Santa Clarita, who has received support from Hill; Cenk Uygur, an MSNBC personality and founder of The Young Turks; and filmmaker Christopher Smith. 

For the special election to fill the remainder of the current term in the district, candidates have until Jan. 9 to file, said Mike Sanchez, spokesman for the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk. The seat was left vacant after Hill resigned on Nov. 1 amid allegations of an inappropriate relationship with a staff member. Last month, Gov. Gavin Newsom declared the special election would be held May 12.

“The difference right off the bat is that (the special election) is to fill the remainder of the term,” said Sanchez. “In the March primary, that will reference the new term. We do conduct a top-two primary, where the top two move off in May.”

He added that there could be “an outright winner in the primary if the winner gets 50% plus-one (of the vote). If there is none, then there would be a runoff on May 12.” 

As of Friday, 13 candidates running in the primary, except for Knight, had not completed the process for the special election, according to the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk. 

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