Call it the top-two-tie scenario: a provision in California election law allows for more than two candidates to advance to the general election if there’s a tie.
And finally, after some 500 elections under top-two rules, a fall contest will include three contenders.
Write-in candidates Baron Bruno, a Libertarian from Marina del Rey, and Republican Marco Antonio “Tony” Leal, a Republican from Los Angeles, each received exactly 64 votes in last month’s primary election in the 62nd Assembly District, final results show.
Bruno and Leal will appear on the Nov. 8 ballot alongside first-place finisher – and heavy fall favorite – Assemblywoman Autumn Burke, D-Marina del Rey, who pulled in 99.9 percent of the vote last month. Democrats hold a nearly 5-to-1 registration advantage in the 62nd.
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For decades, the top primary finishers from each party advanced to the general election. California voters approved the top-two system in June 2010, more than a year after the constitutional amendment was part of a budget deal to close a $40 billion budget shortfall.
Some top-two finishes have been decided by the narrowest of margins. In the 2014 primary for state controller, only 481 votes – out of more than 4 million cast – separated second-place finisher Betty Yee and third-place finisher John A. Pérez, both Democrats.
But there’s never been a tie, and California law specifically prohibits a random drawing to settle the matter.
Use the interactive list below to see the top finishers in the June 7 election and their share of the vote.