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California State Senate: The Democratic Party held majority control of the California State Senate 25-15 heading into the 2012 elections. They needed to gain two seats in order to achieve a 2/3 supermajority. They held 14 even-numbered seats and were expected to win 12 of the 20 odd-numbered seats, meaning that they just needed one more to hit the 27 seat mark. Three of the odd-numbered seats were rated as toss-ups and determined whether Democrats would gain their supermajority, Districts 5, 27, and 31. District 27 was described as lacking a strong Republican candidate, making it the most likely to be won by Democrats in 2012.[1]



General election


  • District 5 was projected to be one of the tight races that determined if Democrats would get a super majority. Bill Berryhill (R) defeated incumbent Cathleen Galgiani (D).[3]
  • District 27: While the Republican candidate Todd Zink had been raising significantly less money than Democrat Fran Pavley, the newly redrawn district does encompass more conservatives than it did prevously, which made for a very tight race in November.[4] Zink, a prosecutor and Marine Corps Reserve officer, was thought to have a fighting chance at getting the seat, but was defeated by Pavley.[3]
  • District 31: Republican Assemblyman Jeff Miller, who has high name recognition, looked to keep a seat for Republicans against Democratic challenger Richard Roth.[3] In early September, this already tight race was further complicated by Steve Clute (D), who came in third in the primary. Despite being a Democrat, he took the unusual step of endorsing Miller, a Republican. Despite this, Roth won.[5]

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