Rudy to go again: Fresh off defeat to Valadao, Salas files for rematch bid in 2024

Rudy Salas’ loss to Rep. David Valadao (R–Hanford) is two weeks old. He’s already launching a bid for a rematch.

After more than $30 million was spent bombarding south Valley voters, it appears former Asm. Rudy Salas (D–Bakersfield) isn’t quite done in his quest to oust Rep. David Valadao (R–Hanford) and capture a deeply Democratic Congressional seat.

Salas, a top recruit of House Democrats, stumbled on Nov. 8 in a critical election underlying Democrats’ roadmap to hanging on to control of the House of Representatives.

Following a few weeks of ballot counting, Valadao emerged victorious over the five-term Democratic lawmaker despite fighting over a newly-drawn district that was more deeply Democratic than Valadao’s expiring 21st Congressional District.

Vote totals in the 2022 contest were solidified on Nov. 21, with updates in Kern County putting a long-shot victory mathematically out of reach for Salas.

Two weeks later, Salas filed paperwork with the Federal Elections Commission to launch a rematch bid in 2024:

It’s not the first time a Valadao opponent has quickly turned around to seek a rematch. Shortly after defeat in 2016, labor lawyer Emilio Huerta filed to run against Valadao in 2018. He later bowed out to clear a path for TJ Cox (D–Fresno).

Cox, who narrowly defeated Valadao in 2018, was ousted in 2020 amid a cacophony of personal scandals. He, too, filed to run for a 2022 bid before abandoning the effort.

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