Today, Californians for the first time will vote in an open primary. That means the top two vote-getters in a race will move on to the November general election, whether they are from the same party or not.
In addition, this will be the first election with the new congressional, state Senate and state Assembly districts approved last fall by the California Citizens Redistricting Commission, which officially take effect in January. You can look at the new districts at this website.
For Newark, this means there are Congressional and Assembly district races underway today as the city breaks away from Union City and moves south into the and the 25th Assembly District.
Polls open at 7 a.m. and close at 8 p.m., though some results may not become official until later in the week.
If you aren't sure where to go to vote, don't worry, you can locate that easily on the Alameda County Registrar of Voter's My Voter Profile page or at SmartVoter.org, the latter of which is a bit easier to navigate. You can find a number of resources on both sites.
Here's a breakdown of our local elections. Stay tuned to Newark Patch tonight for live coverage of the following races:
This new district includes Newark, Fremont, Milpitas, Santa Clara and unincorporated east Santa Clara County.
There are two candidates in this race.
Democrat Bob Wieckowski was elected to the Assembly in 2010. He was previously on the Fremont City Council.
Milpitas City Councilman Pete McHugh will challenge Wieckowski. McHugh, also a Democrat, is a former Santa Clara County supervisor.
Republican Arlyne Diamond is a polical newcomer who founded Diamond Associates. She lists herself as a business owner and professor who has authored four business management books.
The new district includes Newark, part of Fremont, Sunnyvale, Cupertino, Milpitas and Santa Clara.
There are three candidates.
Democrat Mike Honda was first elected to the House in 2000. He was born in California, spent World War Two in an internment camp in Colorado. After the war family was strawberry sharecroppers in San Jose area. He served in Peace Corps in the 1960s and was a science teacher before his political career. He was elected as a Santa Clara County supervisor in 1990.
Republican Evelyn Li is a medical doctor as well as graduate of U.C. Berkeley and U.C. Davis. She emigrated to the United States from Hong Kong as a teenager. Li has been a cardiologist for the past 25 years and founded the Asian Medical Clinic of Fremont. On her website, Li says, "I have had the amazing opportunity to participate in the American Dream. I want to make sure that our American Dream stays alive for our children and grandchildren."
Charles Richardson has lived in Fremont since 1979. He is a married father of four children. Richardson is a Missouri native who dropped out of high school to support his family and then went back to school and earned two college degrees. He now owns Bully's GrillPub in Fremont. On the ballot, the Army veteran lists no party preference. On his website, Richardson states he is "not a politician." He says he's running because "I believe major changes are needed to revitalize our country and protect the rights of other citizens like me."
Stay tuned to Newark Patch tonight for live election coverage.