SACRAMENTO, CA (AP) - As expected, a former state assemblyman has won a special election in a GOP-leaning Senate district that covers a wide swath of rural Northern California.
Republican Jim Nielsen of Gerber nearly won the 4th Senate District seat outright during November's special primary but fell just shy of a simple majority. He split votes with another GOP candidate.
Early returns tabulated Tuesday night showed Nielsen with more than 60 percent of the vote.
Nielsen's victory comes as Republicans carry a 12-point registration advantage in the district, which includes all or parts of 12 counties stretching from areas north of Sacramento to the Oregon border.
The seat opened last year when Republican Doug La Malfa, who had two years remaining in his term, successfully pursued a congressional seat.
In Tuesday's runoff, Nielsen defeated Democrat Mickey Harrington of Magalia.
The outcome does not affect Democrats' supermajority in the Senate.
The Associated Press