State

July 1, 2013

The Buzz: Details are everything in California's 16th Senate District race

Alleged misstep in money report draws rebuke in Senate race

Alleged misstep in money report draws rebuke in Senate race

Checking the wrong box on a form is not always cause for concern.

But in a California Senate race that could alter the balance of power in Sacramento, details are everything.

Last week, a supporter of Democratic Senate candidate Leticia Perez filed a complaint with the Fair Political Practices Commission, alleging that a group backing Perez's Republican opponent, Andy Vidak, should have reported that its money is being used to oppose Perez.

Instead, the group – which has reported about $215,000 in independent expenditures in the race – said its money is going to support Vidak.

The alleged misstep, while it may seem small, drew a rebuke from Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, D-Sacramento.

In a statement Tuesday, Steinberg took umbrage with the California Association of Realtors for not only mischaracterizing campaign expenditures, but for its "vitriolic and highly partisan smear campaign" against Perez.

The Kern County supervisor is squaring off against Hanford farmer Vidak for the 16th Senate District seat vacated by Democrat Michael Rubio.

If Vidak wins the July 23 special election, it would weaken the Democrats' two-thirds majority in the Senate.

AT THE CAPITOL

Much has been made of the demographic forces reshaping California's population and electorate, and today the Latino Democratic Club of Sacramento celebrates a milestone. Members will gather on the north steps at noon to mark, imprecisely, the moment when the number of the state's Latinos matches the number of non-Hispanic whites.

WORTH REPEATING

"Last weekend any wedding (gay or straight) can serve shark fin in Cali. Shark fin ban starts (today)."

JENNIFER FEARING, California state director for the Humane Society of the United States, via Twitter on Friday

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