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Two members of the same party will square off in nearly two dozen legislative or congressional elections this November.

The oddity was created by California's new top-two primary system, in which voters could cast ballots for candidates of any party and the two highest vote-getters advance to the general election.

Seven California congressional, 14 Assembly and two state Senate races are sure to feature candidates from the same party. In a handful of other races, vote counts were too tight this morning to declare which two candidates will advance to the November ballot.

Most of the same-party head-butting this fall will involve Democrats. Only four races, all of them Assembly contests, are sure to feature a Republican squaring off against another member of the GOP.

Longtime U.S. Reps. Howard Berman and Brad Sherman will be featured in perhaps the most closely watched congressional race featuring candidates of the same party. The two Democrats were thrown together into the 30th District when congressional boundaries were redrawn this year.

Other congressional races that will feature same-party candidates are: Fortney Pete Stark and Eric Swalwell, Democrats, 15th District; Gary Miller and Bob Dutton, Republicans, 31st District; Joe Baca and Gloria Negrete McLeod, Democrats, 35th District; Lucille Royball-Allard and David Sanchez, Democrats, 40th District; Maxine Waters and Bob Flores, Democrats, 43rd District; and Janice Hahn and Laura Richardson, Democrats, 44th District.

Senate runoffs featuring members of the same party will occur in two districts -- the 13th, featuring Assemblyman Jerry Hill and former Assemblywoman Sally Lieber, and in the 15th, pitting Assemblyman Jim Beall against former Assemblyman Joe Coto. All four of those candidates are Democrats.

Assembly races in which two Democrats will compete against each other in November include the 2nd District, Wes Chesbro and Tom Lynch; 10th District, Michael Allen and Marc Levine; 18th District, Rob Bonta and Abel Guillen; 19th District, Phil Ting and Michael Breyer; 20th District, Bill Quirk and Jennifer Ong; 39th District, Richard Alarcon and Raul Bocanegra; 47th District, Joe Baca Jr. and Cheryl Brown; 51st District, Jimmy Gomez and either Arturo Chavez or Luis Lopez; 59th District, Reggie Jones Sawyer and Rodney Robinson or Greg Akili; and the 62nd District, Steven Bradford and Mervin Evans.

One other Assembly race, the 50th District, apparently will feature Democrats Betsy Butler and Richard Bloom, although two other candidates -- Democrat Torie Osborn and Republican Bradly S. Torgan -- trailed Bloom by less than 1.5 percentage points with an undertermined number of mailed-in, dropped-off or provisional ballots left uncounted Wednesday.

Assembly races featuring only Republican candidates are the 1st District, Rick Bosetti and Brian Dahle; 5th District, Rico Oller and Frank Bigelow; 67th District, Melissa Melendez and Phil Paule; and 76th District, Rocky Chavez and Sherry Hodges.

MORE ELECTION 2012 COVERAGE

Vote results: Customize your view

Voter guide: The candidates

Bee endorsements

* Updated at 10:20 a.m. Wednesday to add the 31st congressional district to the list of those featuring same-party candidates in November. Updated at 1:45 p.m. to add the 15th Senate district.



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