Capitol Alert

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No surprises in Tuesday's two special run-off elections to fill legislative vacancies.

Assemblyman Bill Emmerson, R-Hemet, handily won the special election run-off in the 37th Senate District.

Emmerson defeated Democrat Justin Blake 56.5 percent to 32 percent.

The three-term assemblyman fills the seat vacated by former GOP Sen. John Benoit, who was appointed to the Riverside County Board of Supervisors last fall.

In the 43rd Assembly District, attorney Mike Gatto, a Democrat, pulled out a win over former Burbank Chamber of Commerce chairman Sunder Ramani, 59-41 percent.

Gatto fills the remaining six months of the final term of former Democratic Assemblyman Paul Krekorian, who stepped down to take a seat on the Los Angeles City Council.

That means Gatto and Ramani, both on the primary ballot, will face each other again in a November re-match.

The 43rd is a safe district for Democrats, but Gatto wasn't considered a sure bet in Tuesday's contest. Low turnout was expected to make the race close and and there were concerns (once for the primary and then again for the special run-off).


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