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Galgiani and Berryhill emerge in key Central Valley state Senate race

June 6, 2012 | 12:38 am

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Assemblywoman Cathleen Galgiani (D-Stockton) and Assemblyman Bill Berryhill (R-Ripon) emerged from Tuesday's primary and will face off in November in the Central Valley’s 5th state Senate District, seen as a swing area that could help shift the balance of power in Sacramento.

With 64% of precincts reporting, Republican Leroy Ornellas, a San Joaquin County Supervisor, was running a distant third.

Voter registration is 42% Democratic and 39% Republican in the district.

Democrats, who hope to win a coveted two-thirds supermajority in the state Senate this year, paid special attention to the newly drawn district, cobbled together from pieces of four old districts, three of which were represented by Republicans in recent years.

LIVE RESULTS: California primary

The California Democratic Party and organized labor helped Galgiani raise more than $540,000. Groups including the California Professional Firefighters independently spent nearly as much to support her candidacy.

Berryhill brought in more than $700,000, a lot of it from business and GOP organizations including the Stanislaus County Republican Party. A much smaller independent effort involved the California Farm Bureau and California Medical Assn. to support Berryhill.

Ornellas lagged significantly in fundraising.


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Photo: Micah Olmstead, 3, helps his mother, Jill Olmstead, cast her ballot while voting in the California primary in Sacramento. Credit: Rich Pedroncelli / Associated Press