With a devastating recession behind them and politicians offering upbeat visions of what lies ahead, California voters streaming to the polls Tuesday will narrow the 2018 governor’s race down to two candidates in a race likely to affect their well-being and bank accounts.
As the favorite of the California Democratic Party’s core liberal base, Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom enters the primary election as the clear front-runner, with polls showing either fellow Democrat Antonio Villaraigosa or Republican multimillionaire John Cox in the best position to secure a second-place finish and proceed to the November election.
Cox has poured nearly $5 million into his bid for governor, but his political fortunes grew considerably when President Trump fired off a tweet endorsing him in the final weeks of the campaign.
After a five-year hiatus from political office, Villaraigosa hopes to recapture the magic that led to his two terms as mayor of Los Angeles, and needs to stitch together support from enough Latinos, moderates and lower-income Californians to finish in the top two.
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