As the California State Assembly District 15 voting count comes to a close, the race determining the top two candidates who will move on to the general election remains tight.
Both the winner and the runner-up of the primary are given the opportunity to win the general election. As of press time, Buffy Wicks, the Democratic incumbent, currently takes the lead with 83.9% of the votes, while Republican candidate Jeanne Solnordal has 8% and independent candidate Sara Brink has 8.1%.
Wicks said she is honored to receive such a large percentage of the vote and plans to continue fighting for East Bay families on critical issues they face if she is re-elected.
“This very strong victory is a testament to Buffy’s commitment to addressing the issues East Bay voters face every day,” said Nick Day, an associate of political consulting and organizing firm 50+1 Strategies, in an email. “In just one year in Sacramento, voters across the 15th District see she is a dedicated fighter, a consensus-builder, and a talented lawmaker — not just anyone can pass 16 bills in their freshman year.”
Day added that he felt that Wicks’ first term showed her favorably to voters and contributed to her high vote count.
He said Wicks, if re-elected, would fight to expand access to programs such as CalFresh, increase funding for gun violence prevention and advocate for environmental sustainability.
“Buffy fought for major victories on all these key issues — and more — during her first year in Sacramento, she knows there is more important work to do,” Day said in an email. “She will keep sharing her progressive vision for change.”
Though Wicks has a clear majority of votes, the race for the second slot remains close, leaving room for either Solnordal or Brink to move forward as vote-by-mail ballots, provisional ballots and other ballots are still being counted.
Solnordal’s platform aims to provide housing to the homeless community, make public schools competitive and reduce taxes. She added that most of her campaign was done on social media, stating that she spoke at three conferences with the League of Women Voters.
Solnordal said she is “disappointed” with current returns, adding that she expected to keep her 2,000 vote lead over Brink.
“In the end I never expected to win in such a progressive District, I was running mostly to get out messages of need for our District,” Solnordal said in an email. “If I do not make it through to the General I hope people will still hear my message and help our Schools, Homeless, holds Government accountable and make our communities safe for our families.”
Brink was contacted for comment but did not respond as of press time.
Devaki Dikshit contributed to this article.