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California Race for US Senate Still Under Voters’ Radar

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A pair of Democrats, Attorney General Kamala Harris and Orange Country Rep. Loretta Sanchez, hold a commanding lead over a trio of Republicans in what so far is a barely visible contest to replace retiring U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer.

Harris’ 27 percent tops the race, with Sanchez at 14 percent and Ron Unz, Tom Del Beccaro and Duf Sundheim all mired in mid- to low single digits. But all those numbers are dwarfed by the 48 percent of likely voters who remain undecided, two months before the June 7 primary.

“It’s amazing,” said Mark DiCamillo, director of the Field Poll. “No one seems to be paying attention.”

The din from the fight-to-the-death national presidential campaigns, which is only going to get louder as the state’s primary nears, may be drowning out the candidates in the California contest, even though they’re running for the state’s first open Senate seat in 24 years.

With so many voters yet to make a choice, it’s virtually impossible to glean too much from the poll, DiCamillo said.

“When voters aren’t paying attention, it’s a crapshoot,” he added.

While Harris looks like a good bet to finish in the top two and move on to the November general election, it’s a lot harder to determine who will share that ballot with her, DiCamillo said.

• Category: Ideology & Politics, Senate Campaign • Tags: John Wildemuth