Democratic Rep. Ami Bera, looking to hold his suburban Sacramento seat, nearly doubled his lead over Republican Scott Jones on Wednesday.
Bera awoke the morning after the Nov. 8 election leading Jones by less than 1 percent, or 2,094 votes. It was a comparatively strong position given that the Elk Grove physician trailed, or led by the slimmest of margins, in his previous two victories. The last one came by just 1,455 votes in 2014.
On Wednesday, Bera widened his lead to more than 4,800 votes. Still, Jones, the elected county sheriff who was in Washington for orientation, wasn’t in position to concede.
His campaign strategist, Dave Gilliard, pointed to the tens of thousands of ballots left to count. A large batch of those is not expected to be tallied until next week, he said.
Congressional election results in California so far have largely tipped in favor of incumbents.
While Republicans were on the defensive over their associations with President-elect Donald Trump, only veteran Rep. Mike Honda, D-San Jose, has ended up losing, and it was to fellow Democrat Ro Khanna.
In northern San Diego, Republican Rep. Darrell Issa of Vista led Democratic challenger Doug Applegate by 4,576 votes as of Wednesday.