California's 36th Congressional District elections, 2014

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U.S. House, California District 36 General Election, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngRaul Ruiz Incumbent 54.2% 72,682
     Republican Brian Nestande 45.8% 61,457
Total Votes 134,139
Source: California Secretary of State


2012

CongressLogo.png

California's 36th Congressional District

General Election Date
November 4, 2014

Primary Date
June 3, 2014

November 4 Election Winner:
Raul Ruiz Democratic Party
Incumbent prior to election:
Raul Ruiz Democratic Party
Raul Ruiz.png

Race Ratings
Cook Political Report: Lean D[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
BattlegroundRace.jpg
The 36th Congressional District of California held an election for the U.S. House of Representatives on November 4, 2014.

Incumbent Raul Ruiz (D) defeated California assemblyman Brian Nestande (R) by 6 percentage points in a race that the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee (DCCC) and the National Republican Congressional Committee (NRCC) expected to be competitive.[3]

Ballotpedia initially identified California's 36th Congressional District as a 2014 battleground race because the district had relatively even numbers of Democratic and Republican voters with a slight Democratic lean based on past presidential election results. President Barack Obama won the district by 3.2 percent in 2012 and 3 percent in 2008. In addition, Ruiz was considered vulnerable by DCCC and the NRCC. Ruiz was a member of the DCCC's Frontline Program, which was designed to help protect vulnerable Democratic incumbents heading into the 2014 election.[4] The NRCC also added Nestande to their "On the Radar" list and provided support for his campaign.[5] The race, however, was less competitive than expected.

Once considered a vulnerable incumbent, Ruiz, a former emergency room doctor, received a significant amount of positive media coverage for providing medical attention to a Breitbart reporter who had a seizure while on a flight in July and for resuscitating a man who collapsed during a flight in October.[6] Michael Trujillo, a California Democratic operative, commented on Ruiz's efforts saying, “He’s the Cory Booker of California. He’s running around saving everyone. So that has saturated within his district in terms of the media.”[6]

Ruiz's positive image combined with Nestande difficulty raising funds gave Ruiz an advantage heading into the Oct. 5 debate.[6] During the debate, and throughout the campaign, Nestande attempted to tie Ruiz to Obama. The strategy was successful for many Republicans during the 2014 election cycle, but was not effective in unseating Ruiz. Nestande also criticized Ruiz's support for "big government," the Affordable Care Act and for voting to raise the debt-ceiling. He said, "It's simple: The bigger the government, the smaller your paycheck."[7] Ruiz criticized Nestande for caring more about the rich than the middle and working classes, and he labeled him a partisan politician. He said, “His record and comments show that it’s more important to him to follow his partisan leadership, even when it contributes to gridlock."[8]

After conceding to Ruiz at 2:32 a.m. on Nov. 5, Nestande released the following statement: "I am grateful for the opportunity to have represented the citizens of this district for the past 6 years in the California Assembly. Congressman Ruiz ran an effective campaign and tonight, I congratulate him on his victory. I am humbled by the overwhelming amount of support my campaign received. This country faces many challenges and I wish Congressman Ruiz the best in representing our communities."[9]

During his victory speech, Ruiz told his supporters that he and his wife Monica will welcome twin babies into their family in April 2015.[9]

Candidate Filing Deadline Primary Election General Election
March 7, 2014
June 3, 2014
November 4, 2014

Primary: California is one of three states to use a blanket primary, or top-two system, which allows all candidates to run and all voters to vote but only moves the top two vote-getters, regardless of party affiliation, to the general election.[10][11][12]

Voter registration: To vote in the primary, voters had to register by May 19, 2014. For the general election, the voter registration deadline was October 20, 2014 (the 15th calendar day before that election).[13]

See also: California elections, 2014

Incumbent: Heading into the election the incumbent was Raul Ruiz (D), who was first elected in 2012.

California's 36th Congressional District is located in the southeastern portion of the state and includes most of Riverside County.[14]

Candidates

General election candidates

Democratic Party Raul Ruiz Green check mark transparent.png
Republican Party Brian Nestande


June 3, 2014, primary results

Democratic Party Raul Ruiz - Incumbent Approveda
Republican Party Ray Haynes
Republican Party Brian Nestande - State representative[15] Approveda

Election results

General election

U.S. House, California District 36 General Election, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngRaul Ruiz Incumbent 54.2% 72,682
     Republican Brian Nestande 45.8% 61,457
Total Votes 134,139
Source: California Secretary of State

Primary election

U.S. House, California District 36 Primary, 2014
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngRaul Ruiz Incumbent 50.3% 41,443
     Republican Green check mark transparent.pngBrian Nestande 34.8% 28,662
     Republican Ray Haynes 14.9% 12,232
Total Votes 82,337
Source: California Secretary of State

Race background

See also: California's 36th Congressional District elections, 2014

California's 36th Congressional District was a battleground district in 2014 due to the low margin of victory for Democrats in the previous election and last two presidential elections. Incumbent Raul Ruiz (D) and Brian Nestande (R) triumphed in the blanket primary over Ray Haynes (R). Ruiz went on to defeat Nestande in the general election on November 4, 2014.[16][3]

Frontline Program

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

"On the Radar"

The National Republican Congressional Committee added Nestande to their "On the Radar" list in November 2013. According to the NRCC, candidates that made this list received "...the tools they need to run successful, winning campaigns against their Democratic opponents."[5]

Issues

See also: Energy and the 2014 election: the ballots and beyond

Raul Ruiz

Ruiz's campaign website listed the following issues:[17]

  • Jobs and the Economy: "Reduce the deficit in a way that protects working families, retirees, and people who have lost their homes, jobs, and security during the last few years."
  • Breaking Gridlock: "As an Emergency Room physician, I’m trained to focus on solving problems and getting things done. When a patient is in the emergency room, it doesn’t matter whether they’re a Democrat or Republican, or who gets credit for solving the problem; all that matters is fixing the problem. That’s the approach I’ll bring to Congress."
  • Education: "Prepare all our children for success by making college affordable, investing in preschool and vocational training, and fully funding after school programs."
  • Medicare and Social Security: "Always protect Social Security and Medicare from attempts to slash the guaranteed benefits California seniors have paid for and planned on."
  • Standing Up for What's Right: "The executive order to stop deporting young people who were brought here through no fault of their own is very important to me. Congress should stop playing politics and recognize that everyone has an interest in immigration reform."

[18]

—Raul Ruiz's campaign website, http://www.drraulruiz.com/issues

Brian Nestande

Nestande's campaign website listed the following issues:[19]

  • Education: "To compete in a global market, our children need the best education possible. It is the key to their future – and America’s. Washington can’t make the decisions for our schools – we need to. I support returning control of education to local leaders, parents, and teachers. We know best what we need for our children and a one-sized-fits-all solution from Washington or Sacramento won’t prepare our children to compete in the global economy."
  • Energy & the Environment: "California’s natural resources are what make it one of the best places to live in America. We all want to protect the environment, protect habitats, and our quality of life. We also need to utilize available energy resources and work to increase supply so that we can drive down prices for working families struggling to make ends meet."
  • Healthcare: "The new federal health care law is proving to be unworkable. What was promised by many to be “free healthcare” will actually force people into insurance exchanges that impose high deductibles and fees costing families thousands of dollars each year without improving the quality of care. In California alone, there are projections of premium increases of as much as 146%. We need to reform health care in a way that increases access and quality of care while reducing costs."
  • Immigration: "There is no country in the world more welcoming to immigrants than America. As we debate a national immigration reform proposal, we need to balance border protection with the plight of immigrants here illegally. We need to pass immigration reform that strengthens control of our borders so we know who is entering the country; we need immigration reform that creates a guest worker program that strengthens our economy; and we need to address a permanent population of people here illegally."
  • Jobs & the Economy: "As our manufacturing base continues to erode and our economy becomes increasingly dependent on technology and the service sector, more and more Californians find themselves left out. We need to rebuild our manufacturing sector, which still provides better quality than any other country in the world. We need to continue to invest in new technologies and biotechnology, which provides good-paying jobs and an important economic engine."

[18]

—Brian Nestande's campaign website, http://briannestande.com/the-issues/

Key votes

Below are important votes the incumbent cast during the 113th Congress.

HR 644

See also: Bowe Bergdahl exchange

Yea3.png On September 9, 2014, the Republican-run House approved H.R. 644, a resolution condemning President Barack Obama's act of exchanging five Guantanamo Bay prisoners for Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl.[20][21] The House voted 249-163 for resolution, with all Republicans and 22 Democrats supporting the bill. Fourteen Democrats and five Republicans did not vote on the resolution, while all other Democrats opposed its passage.[21] Raul Ruiz dissented from the majority of the Democratic party and voted in favor of the bill.[20][21]

Government shutdown

See also: United States budget debate, 2013

Yea3.png On September 30, 2013, the House passed a final stopgap spending bill before the shutdown went into effect. The bill included a one-year delay of the Affordable Care Act's individual mandate and would have also stripped the bill of federal subsidies for congressional members and staff. It passed through the House with a vote of 228-201.[22] At 1 a.m. on October 1, 2013, one hour after the shutdown officially began, the House voted to move forward with going to a conference. In short order, Sen. Harry Reid rejected the call to conference.[23] Raul Ruiz voted for the stopgap spending bill that would have delayed the individual mandate.[24]

Yea3.png The shutdown ended on October 16, 2013, when the House took a vote on HR 2775 after it was approved by the Senate. The bill to reopen the government lifted the $16.7 trillion debt limit and funded the government through January 15, 2014. Federal employees also received retroactive pay for the shutdown period. The only concession made by Senate Democrats was to require income verification for Obamacare subsidies.[25] The House passed the legislation shortly after the Senate, by a vote of 285-144, with all 144 votes against the legislation coming from Republican members. Raul Ruiz voted for HR 2775.[26]

Campaign contributions

Raul Ruiz

Raul Ruiz (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[27]April 15, 2013$51,293.74$344,824.88$(100,857.45)$295,261.17
July Quarterly[28]July 15, 2013$295,261.17$423,417.81$(89,322.38)$629,356.60
October Quarterly[29]October 15, 2013$629,356.60$322,183.49$(75,607.15)$875,932.94
Year-End[30]January 31, 2014$875,932$413,723$(91,649)$1,198,007
April Quarterly[31]April 15, 2014$1,198,007$432,340$(113,706)$1,516,641
Pre-Primary[32]May 22, 2014$1,516,641$216,643$(97,073)$1,636,211
July Quarterly[33]July 15, 2014$1,636,211$320,639$(48,427)$1,908,424
October Quarterly[34]October 15, 2014$1,908,424$642,911$(926,849)$1,624,485
Pre-General[35]October 23, 2014$1,624,485$85,459$(653,547)$1,056,398
Running totals
$3,202,141.18$(2,197,037.98)

Brian Nestande

Brian Nestande (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
July Quarterly[36]July 15, 2013$0.00$144,858.93$(8,964.05)$135,894.88
October Quarterly[37]October 15, 2013$135,894.88$76,871.72$(62,181.71)$150,584.89
Year-End[38]January 31, 2014$150,584$229,887$(78,615)$301,856
April Quarterly[39]April 15, 2014$301,856$145,112$(124,226)$322,741
Pre-Primary[40]May 22, 2014$322,741$89,908$(176,530)$236,119
July Quarterly[41]July 15, 2014$236,119$169,472$(170,959)$234,631
October Quarterly[42]October 15, 2014$234,631$251,854$(351,970)$135,465
Pre-General[43]October 23, 2014$135,465$94,159$(114,329)$115,295
Running totals
$1,202,122.65$(1,087,774.76)

Ray Haynes

Ray Haynes (2014) Campaign Finance Reports
ReportDate FiledBeginning BalanceTotal Contributions
for Reporting Period
ExpendituresCash on Hand
April Quarterly[44]April 15, 2014$0$14,761$(14,761)$0
Pre-Primary[45]May 22, 2014$0$3,150$(0)$3,150
Running totals
$17,911$(14,761)

**As of the 2014 Pre-Primary Report, Ray Haynes' committee owed $14,761 in outstanding loans to Ray Haynes.

District history

Candidate ballot accecss
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2012

On November 6, 2012, Raul Ruiz (D) won election to the United States House. He defeated Mary Bono Mack in the general election.

U.S. House, California District 36 General Election, 2012
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngRaul Ruiz 52.9% 110,189
     Republican Mary Bono Mack Incumbent 47.1% 97,953
Total Votes 208,142
Source: California Secretary of State "Official Election Results, 2012 General Election"

2011

On July 12, 2011, Janice Hahn won a special election to the United States House.

2010

On November 2, 2010, Jane Harman won re-election to the United States House. She defeated Mattie Fein (R) and Herb Peters (L) in the general election.[46]

U.S. House, California District 36 General Election, 2010
Party Candidate Vote % Votes
     Democratic Green check mark transparent.pngJane Harman incumbent 59.6% 114,489
     Republican Mattie Fein 34.7% 66,706
     Libertarian Herb Peters 5.6% 10,840
Total Votes 192,035

See also

External links

References

  1. Cook Political Report, "2014 HOUSE RACE RATINGS FOR June 26, 2014," accessed July 28, 2014
  2. Sabato's Crystal Ball, "2014 House Races," accessed July 28, 2014
  3. 3.0 3.1 The Huffington Post, "Election 2014," November 4, 2014
  4. 4.0 4.1 Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, "DCCC Chairman Steve Israel Announces 2013-2014 Frontline Members," accessed March 5, 2013
  5. 5.0 5.1 Roll Call, "House Republicans Put 36 Recruits ‘On the Radar’" accessed November 21, 2013
  6. 6.0 6.1 6.2 Roll Call, "The ‘Cory Booker of California’ Leaps to Safer Ground," accessed December 10, 2014
  7. Desert Sun, "Ruiz, Nestande present contrasting visions for Congress," accessed December 10, 2014
  8. The Press Enterprise, "DECISION 2014: Ruiz, Nestande clash during debate," accessed December 10, 2014
  9. 9.0 9.1 Desert Sun, "Rep. Raul Ruiz claims victory; Brian Nestande concedes," accessed December 10, 2014
  10. National Conference of State Legislatures Website, "State Primary Election Types," accessed January 6, 2014
  11. Fair Vote, "Congressional and Presidential Primaries: Open, Closed, Semi-Closed, and 'Top Two,'" accessed January 6, 2014
  12. Ballotpedia research conducted December 26, 2013, through January 3, 2014, researching and analyzing various state websites and codes.
  13. California Secretary of State Website, "Voter Registration," accessed January 3, 2014
  14. California Redistricting Map, "Map," accessed September 25, 2012
  15. My desert.com, "Brian Nestande says he'll challenge Rep. Raul Ruiz in 2014," April 9, 2013
  16. The New York Times, "California Primary Results," June 3, 2014
  17. Campaign website, "Issues," accessed April 24, 2014
  18. 18.0 18.1 Note: This text is quoted verbatim from the original source. Any inconsistencies are attributed to the original source.
  19. Campaign website, "Issues," accessed April 24, 2014
  20. 20.0 20.1 The Hill, "House votes to condemn administration over Taliban prisoner swap," September 9, 2014
  21. 21.0 21.1 21.2 U.S. House, "Roll Call Vote 485," accessed September 10, 2014
  22. Clerk of the U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 504," accessed October 31, 2013
  23. Buzzfeed, "Government Shutdown: How We Got Here," accessed October 1, 2013
  24. Clerk of the U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 504," accessed October 31, 2013
  25. The Washington Post, "Reid, McConnell propose bipartisan Senate bill to end shutdown, extend borrowing," accessed October 16, 2013
  26. U.S. House, "Final vote results for Roll Call 550," accessed October 31, 2013
  27. Federal Election Commission, "Raul Ruiz April Quarterly," accessed July 23, 2013
  28. Federal Election Commission, "Raul Ruiz July Quarterly," accessed July 23, 2013
  29. Federal Election Commission, "Raul Ruiz October Quarterly," accessed October 21, 2013
  30. Federal Election Commission, "Raul Ruiz Year-End," accessed February 4, 2014
  31. Federal Election Commission, "Raul Ruiz April Quarterly," accessed April 21, 2014
  32. Federal Election Commission, "Raul Ruiz Pre-Primary," accessed June 3, 2014
  33. Federal Election Commission, "Raul Ruiz July Quarterly," accessed July 23, 2014
  34. Federal Election Commission, "Raul Ruiz October Quarterly," accessed October 20, 2014
  35. Federal Election Commission, "Raul Ruiz Pre-General," accessed November 24, 2014
  36. Federal Election Commission, "Brian Nestande July Quarterly," accessed July 28, 2013
  37. Federal Election Commission, "Brian Nestande October Quarterly," accessed October 29, 2013
  38. Federal Election Commission, "Brian Nestande Year-End," accessed February 10, 2014
  39. Federal Election Commission, "Brian Nestande April Quarterly," accessed May 5, 2014
  40. Federal Election Commission, "Brian Nestande Pre-Primary," accessed June 3, 2014
  41. Federal Election Commission, "Brian Nestande July Quarterly," accessed July 28, 2014
  42. Federal Election Commission, "Brian Nestande October Quarterly," accessed October 23, 2014
  43. Federal Election Commission, "Brian Nestande Pre-General," accessed November 24, 2014
  44. Federal Election Commission, "Ray Haynes April Quarterly," accessed May 6, 2014
  45. Federal Election Commission, "Ray Haynes Pre-Primary," accessed June 3, 2014
  46. U.S. Congress House Clerk, "Statistics of the Congressional Election of November 2, 2010," accessed March 28, 2013