Capitol Alert

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20120604_HA_VOTERS0010.JPGWill the California Senate keep the 16th Senate District in the blue column, or will Democrats in the upper house see their supermajority eroded when the Andy Vidak vs. Leticia Perez race is decided?

Voting closes July 23 in the special runoff, and the matchup isn't cheap. Since the beginning of the month, the California Republican Party has reported contributing more than $186,000 to Vidak's campaign, an amount supplemented by contributions from the Tulare County Republican Party ($21,381) and the San Luis Obispo Republican Central Committee ($40,000).

Union-backed independent expenditure committees, meanwhile, are putting their money behind Perez. Since July 1, the Democrat has benefited from nearly $200,000 spent on mailers, radio buys, Facebook ads and other activities of several IE committees, including those of SEIU Local 1000 and the California State Council of Service Employees.

Vidak reported $124,838 cash on hand as of July 6, while Perez reported $72,455, according to filings with the secretary of state through late last week.

VIDEO: Dan Walters wonders why Janet Napolitano, who resigned last week from her job as homeland security secretary, was picked as the next UC president.

COURT DELAY: Sen. Rod Wright, D-Inglewood, was scheduled to go to trial today on voting fraud and perjury charges, but he's won another delay. A Los Angeles Superior Court judge has tentatively set Nov. 4 as the new date, with a status conference scheduled for Oct. 1. A grand jury indicted Wright on the charges back in 2010.

NEW GIG: If you're calling Sen. Kevin de León's office looking for communications director Greg Hayes, you're looking in the wrong place. He started a new job today at KP Public Affairs. Hayes also advised de León on energy issues.

CAKE AND CANDLES: Congratulations to Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra, D-Los Angeles, who turned 42 on Saturday.

PHOTO: A Sacramento County election clerk looks over a vote-by-mail ballot on June 4, 2012. The Sacramento Bee/Hector Amezcua



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