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By Beau Yarbrough, Inland Valley Daily Bulletin
Posted: 06/24/16 – 11:03 PM PDT |

SAN BERNARDINO >> A close race for second place in California’s 8th Congressional District just got a little less close.

In the latest set of June 7 primary vote results released by the San Bernardino County registrar of voters, Republican Tim Donnelly slipped behind Democrat Rita Ramirez in the battle for second place. Since 2010, the top two winners no matter the party advance to the general election in the fall.

As of 4 p.m. Friday, Donnelly has 23,216 votes, or 21.2 percent of the vote. That puts him behind Ramirez, who has 23,401 votes, or 21.4 percent.

Ramirez is a retired school teacher and political newcomer, while Donnelly is a former two-term assemblyman from California’s 33rd Assembly District who chose not to run for re-election in 2014, making an unsuccessful bid for governor instead. Both trail incumbent Rep. Paul Cook, R-Yucca Valley, who has 46,061 votes, or 42 percent of the vote.

But San Bernardino County isn’t the whole story: The 8th Congressional District also includes parts of Inyo and Mono counties, where Donnelly is less well-known. And with those in consideration, the picture gets even bleaker.

As of 4:47 p.m. Friday, the California secretary of state’s office, which collects data from county election offices across California, had Cook in the lead with 49,789 votes, or 42.2 percent of the vote, followed by Ramirez with 25,716 votes, or 21.8 percent of the vote, and Donnelly with 24,420 votes, or 20.7 percent of the vote. They were trailed by Democrats John Pinkerton with 11,465 votes, or 9.7 percent of the vote, and Roger La Plante with 6,524 votes, or 5.5 percent of the vote.

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