Internet InfoMedia rematch set between gop rep valadao democratic challenger in battleground california district

Republican U.S. Rep. David Valadao and Democrat Rudy Salas will face each other in November in California’s 22nd congressional district, a rematch of last cycle’s close contest.

The district runs through California’s Central Valley farm belt, including parts of Bakersfield. It’s considered one of the most competitive U.S. House districts in the state, where a handful of tight races may be key to determining which party controls the chamber.

In 2022, Valadao beat Salas by less than 4,000 votes.

2024 CALIFORNIA PRIMARY RESULTS

Democrats hold a 16-point advantage over Republicans in registered voters. But Valadao held the seat from 2013 until 2019, lost it for one term and then retook it in 2020. The borders of the district have changed slightly since Valadao was first elected due to redistricting.

Rep. David Valadao speaking to reporters

UNITED STATES – MAY 12: Rep. David Valadao, R-Calif., speaks during the news conference on the Invest to Protect Act outside the Capitol on Thursday, May 12, 2022.  (Bill Clark/CQ-Roll Call, Inc via Getty Images)

Valadao and Salas beat out Republican Chris Mathys and Democrat Melissa Hurtado in the primary. California puts all candidates, regardless of party, on one primary ballot and the two candidates who get the most votes advance to the general election.

In the weeks leading up to the primary, Democrats had feared a possible lock-out in the general election if the party split its votes between Salas and Hurtado. The state Democratic Party and prominent leaders like California Gov. Gavin Newsom and former U.S. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi had lined up behind Salas, a former state legislator. But Hurtado, currently a state senator, is also well known in the district.

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“I’m truly grateful to the voters for standing with me in yet another critical election and thankful to all the volunteers who worked hard to get us here,” Salas said in a statement posted to X, formerly Twitter.

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