US Rep. Young Kim repulsed a last-minute challenge from another Republican and will face Democrat Asif Mahmood for the seat in upstate Orange County in the fall election.
Kim, a well-funded incumbent, seemed on a glide path to win a top-two spot in the primary and move to the November general election to represent the 40th congressional district. But in the last few weeks before the primary, Mission Viejo councilman Greg Raths appeared to be gaining momentum among the Conservatives.
The post-census redrawing of congressional districts meant Kim faced many voters she had not previously represented. After the election process triggered a reshuffle of incumbents, Kim, 59, opted for the new 40th district. Your home in La Habra is just outside the borders. (Members of Congress do not have to reside in their districts.)
Raths, who previously ran unsuccessfully for Congress three times, was mayor of Mission Viejo, the new district’s largest city. Kim and her allies spent millions of dollars promoting their conservative credentials and trying to portray Raths as liberal.
Republicans have a nearly 5 percentage point lead in voter registration in the district. In Kim’s current district, 30% of eligible voters are Asian and 29% Latino; The new district has fewer minority voters and is about 60% white, according to the nonpartisan California Target Book, which obstructs race.
Democrats have listed the 40th district as one of the races they plan to target in the fall midterm elections. But their best hopes for turning things around in the state are districts currently represented by Reps Mike Garcia, David Valadao and Michelle Steel. These counties became less favorable to the GOP after the maps were redrawn. The Democratic Party must also protect members of Congress like Reps Katie Porter and Mike Levin, whose districts have become more competitive.
These races are among several competitive elections in the state that are expected to be contested vigorously by both parties in the fall. Republicans are widely expected to take control of at least one house of Congress in November. California’s congressional delegation, which will still be the largest in the country at 52 members despite losing a seat after the reshuffle, will determine how much power Republicans hold.
https://www.latimes.com/politics/story/2022-06-13/republican-orange-county-rep-young-kim-advances-to-general-election Republican Rep. Young Kim advances in O.C. congressional election