Despite quitting the race for California Secretary of State, indicted State Sen. Leland Yee (D) will remain on the June 3 primary ballot–in the top position–because the state does not permit withdrawals. That, plus the strong poll numbers shown by Republican candidate Pete Peterson, has prompted Democrats to scramble to support State Sen. Alex Padilla, who recently snagged the endorsement of veteran U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein.
The race has come under increasing focus as four candidates–Peterson, Padilla, Democrat Derek Cressman and independent candidate Dan Schnur–prepare to debate each other at a luncheon at the Sacramento Press Club on Wednesday. Green Party candidate David Curtis was not invited, despite a strong third-place showing in the latest Field Poll, though the Sacramento Bee reports that he is planning to “crash” the debate regardless.
The Los Angeles Times reports that the nonpartisan Independent Voter Project has called for a boycott of the Sacramento Press Club debate, owing to Curtis’s exclusion. However, the club’s president cited “a tirade of insulting and threatening social media posts about our organization” as a reason not to reconsider its decision not to invite Curtis to participate. Curtis had 5%, while Schnur had 4% and Cressman had 3% in the Field Poll.
Update: Breitbart California Politics Editor Jon Fleischman notes: “The order of candidates for statewide candidates is rotated in each Assembly district. So while Yee will be on top of the ballot in District 1, then he will be second in the next district, and third in the third, and so forth.”