Battleground Friday: California's 7th Congressional District

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California's 7th Congressional District

General Election Date
November 4, 2014

Primary Date
June 3, 2014

November 4 Election Winner:
Ami Bera Democratic Party
Incumbent prior to election:
Ami Bera Democratic Party
Ami Bera.jpg

Race Ratings
Cook Political Report: Toss Up[1]

Sabato's Crystal Ball: Lean D[2]

California U.S. House Elections
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2014 U.S. Senate Elections

Flag of California.png

By the Congress team


In the next profile of our 2014 battleground districts, Ballotpedia is taking an in-depth look at California's 7th Congressional District's 2014 election.

Current incumbent: Ami Bera (D) was first elected to the 7th District in 2012. In 2012, he defeated incumbent Dan Lungren (R) in a race that was too close to call until a week after the election.[3]

Bera is a member of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee's Frontline Program. The program is designed to help protect vulnerable Democratic incumbents heading into the 2014 election.[4]

2012 MOV: Bera won the seat in 2012 with a margin of victory of 3.4% over incumbent Dan Lungren (R). The two candidates were separated by 9,191 votes.

2014 candidates: There are currently three Republican candidates challenging Bera for the seat, Igor Birman, Elizabeth Emken and Doug Ose. Birman is a former Chief of Staff of Rep. Tom McClintock.[5] Emken unsuccessfully challenged Dianne Feinstein in the 2012 election to the U.S. Senate.[6] Ose is a local business owner and former member of Congress. He was elected in 1998 and served for three terms.[7] All three Republican challengers were listed as "on the radar" by the National Republican Congressional Committee, the first step of their "Young Guns" program.[8]

What made it a Ballotpedia battleground district?: Our analysis points to the district being a battleground with a slight Democratic lean. Cook's PVI shows the district as even, while Fairvote shows the district slightly favoring the Democratic Party. The MOV in 2012 was under 5% and the district was won by President Barack Obama by 5% or less in both 2008 and 2012. Additionally, incumbent Ami Bera is a freshman representative.

FEC: Year-End reports from the Federal Election Commission show incumbent Ami Bera with a significant fundraising advantage over his GOP challengers. He raised a total of $1,378,332 in 2013 and is sitting on $1,151,637 cash on hand. Ose ended the year with contributions totaling $628,451 and $277,166 cash on hand.[9] Emken raised $450,998 in 2013 and had $305,826 left on hand.[10] Birman had the lowest fundraising of the group with a total of $247,572 and only $124,273 cash remaining.[11]

The information above was compiled following the California candidate filing deadline. Please find all further updates on the 7th District's election page.
California's 7th Congressional District
California's 7th.JPG

Population: 710,607
Gender: 51.3% Female, 48.7% Male
Race: 66.0% White, 12.4% Asian, 7.8% Black
Ethnicity: 17.2% Hispanic
Unemployment: 13.8%
Median household income: $60,537
High school graduation rate: 90.4%
College graduation rate: 30.9%

See also