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Astronaut, farmer in 10th District showdown
Its youth versus age in 9th District election
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Manteca-Ripon voters in November will help send either an astronaut or a farmer to Congress.

Meanwhile Lathrop voters in 154 days will play a role in deciding whether the youngest member of the next Congress will be from San Joaquin County.

With 71.4 percent of the ballots counted as of 12:15 a.m. today voters in the new 10th Congressional District gave Republican Jeff Denham 47.7 percent (26,444 votes) and Democrat Jose Hernandez 29 percent (16,062 votes) of the vote. Independent Chad Condit pulled 14.9 percent (8,246 votes) of the vote while Manteca’s Mike Barkley was fourth with 6 percent (3,327 votes) and Troy McComak fifth with 2.4 percent (1,334 votes).

Denham who is a veteran, farmer and currently serving in Congress will face Hernandez Nov. 6 in the general election. Hernandez was the nation’s first Hispanic astronaut.

Tuesday was California’s first ever open primary that advances the two top vote-getters regardless of party affiliation to the general ballot. As a result, Condit made the strongest showing ever of an independent seeking election from the San Joaquin Valley.

The 10th District includes all of Stanislaus County plus Manteca, Ripon, and Escalon.

Democrat Jerry McNerney pulled 49 percent of the vote in the newly formed 9th District that includes Lathrop and the rest of San Joaquin County minus Manteca, Ripon and Escalon while 24-year-old Republican Ricky Gill drew 39 percent (25,324 votes) and Republican John McDonald 12 percent (7,797 votes).

The 9th District race is being watched closely as it pits a long-term Democratic incumbent against a Republican challenger who will be of legal age to serve in Congress just before he is seated should he win election in November.

State Senate & Assembly

In the 5th State Senate District representing all of San Joaquin County, voters opted to advance two current members of the California Assembly to the November ballot. Democrat Cathleen Galgiani garnered 42 percent (35,419 votes) to Republican Bill Berryhill’s 36.4 percent (30,708 votes).

Running third was Republican Leroy Ornellas who currently represents South Manteca, Ripon and Tracy on the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors. He managed 21.6 percent (18,211 votes).

Republican Kristen Olsen picked up 63.5 percent (29,427 votes) to top Democrat Chris Mateo at 36.5 percent (16,909 votes) in the new 12th Assembly District that includes all of Stanislaus County plus Manteca, Ripon, Lathrop, and Escalon. Olsen is currently an Assembly member while Mateo is on the Lathrop City Council.

County Supervisor races

Bob Elliott and Rhodesia Ransom are headed for a November run-off for the 5th District seat on the San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors representing Tracy, Mountain House and Manteca south of Yosemite Avenue.

Elliott polled 45.24 percent (4,351 votes) and Ransom 33.17 percent (3,190 votes). Elliott is a Tracy council member while Ransom serves on that city’s planning commission.

Tracy farmer Tom Benigno was third with 21.2 percent (2,041 votes).

Incumbent Steve Bestolarides ran unopposed for re-election in the 4th District that includes Lathrop and South Stockton. He got 97.4 percent or 10,720 votes. Since that is more than 50 percent. He was elected outright to another four-year term in January and will not have to run in November.