Dan Walters

By Dan Walters
dwalters@sacbee.com
Published: Tuesday, Jun. 10, 2014 – 12:00 am
Last Modified: Tuesday, Jun. 10, 2014 – 12:49 am

Months ago, without saying it publicly, Democrats gave up hopes of regaining control of the House of Representatives and began concentrating resources on saving their command of the U.S. Senate.

That shift of emphasis, coupled with the natural dynamics of nonpresidential elections and the prospect of a very low-turnout November election, has raised Republicans’ hopes of recouping their 2012 congressional losses in California.

As many as eight Democratic members, especially four first elected in 2012, could be at risk this year.

This year’s campaigns began with what appeared to be a certain Democratic gain in San Bernardino County’s 31st Congressional District.

Two years ago, thanks to multiple Democrats on the top-two ballot, two Republicans made it to the November runoff despite lopsided Democratic registration.

The GOP winner, Gary Miller, didn’t even bother to run for re-election this year; nevertheless, history almost repeated itself when one Republican finished first in last week’s primary and another came within a whisker of finishing second.

Democrat Pete Aguilar apparently eked out second place and is now favored to win the seat.

Beyond the 31st CD, however, things look a bit dicey for Democrats, in part because their incumbents and candidates fared poorly in the low-turnout primary.

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