Republican Elan Carr and Democratic State Sen. Ted Lieu will face each other in November in the race to succeed retiring Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), as they edged out former Los Angeles City Councilwoman Wendy Greuel and author and spiritual teacher Marianne Williamson in Tuesday’s open primary.
Carr garnered the most votes, something of a surprise in a district where Democrats enjoy a 44%-26% registration advantage. But votes were split between a long list of 18 candidates competing for the seat, which includes Santa Monica, Venice, Malibu, Beverly Hills and the South Bay.
Lieu had the advantage of representing a significant chunk of the district. Greuel, a former DreamWorks executive, entered the race in February — the day that Waxman announced his retirement — but did not live in the district. That is not a requirement in campaigns for congressional seats, but in a race with low turnout, that may have hurt her campaign, even with significant backing from entertainment industry donors. She announced on Wednesday morning that she had conceded.
According to the latest results, with 100% of precincts reporting, Carr had 21.49% of the vote to Lieu’s 19.05%. Greuel trailed at 16.77%, followed by Williamson at 12.95% and public radio host Matt Miller at 11.97%.
Given the Democratic-lean of the district, Carr, a former gang prosecutor and Iraq war veteran, will undoubtedly run an outsider’s campaign, playing down his party registration in favor of a bipartisan message. The son of Jewish immigrants, he also has made efforts to draw support in the Jewish community, which make up a significant share of voters in the district and helped form a strong base for Waxman.
Lieu is among the leaders of efforts in the State Senate to expand the California film and TV production incentives, with runaway production one of the issues in the district.
Williamson’s also-ran showing was also somewhat surprising, given that her candidacy drew extensive attention in the national media, intrigued by the novelty of it.
In the race for Los Angeles County Supervisor, former state lawmaker Sheila Kuehl and former Santa Monica city councilman Bobby Shriver will head to a runoff in November. Kuehl drew 36.18% of the vote to Shriver’s 28.80%. They edged out West Hollywood city councilman John Duran with 16.34%.