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After Wins In San Diego And Elsewhere, California GOP Sees Positive Signs

Above: City Councilman Kevin Faulconer talks in front of supporters at his mayoral campaign launch.

Aired 2/17/14 on KPBS News.

California Republicans might be feeling hopeful after several elections in San Diego and San Bernardino.

The California GOP recently re-captured the mayor’s office in San Diego and took the mayor’s office and two city council seats in San Bernardino. The party also won a key state Senate seat in a special election last year.

GOP political consultant Mike Madrid said it’s a good sign for the party.

“I think it’s too early to suggest that there’s some sort of Republican renaissance," he said. "But I do think it’s a sign that perhaps the worst of the dark ages may be behind us.”

Madrid said the San Diego and San Bernardino races were two of the biggest prizes the party could capture this year. But he notes local races are generally non-partisan. He says Republicans still have a problem on the state level, where candidate names are listed along with party affiliation. That tends to hurt the GOP in a state where only 29 percent of registered voters are Republicans.

Democrats believe they still have an edge in general elections with high voter turnout.

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