California voters elected Jerry Brown governor and decided to return Barbara Boxer to the U.S. Senate Tuesday, bucking national trends that saw widespread Democratic defeats.
Brown beat former eBay chief Meg Whitman, who spent $142 million on the race. That’s more than any candidate has ever spent on any statewide race in the country.
Brown served as governor before in the 1970s and '80s. He was the youngest governor then and at 72 will be the oldest person to enter the office in January.
Boxer beat the former head of Hewlett-Packard Carly Fiorina. It was the toughest re-election fight ever for the three-term U.S. senator – despite Fiorina’s unpopular ties to Wall Street and conservative social views. A feisty Fiorina refused to concede defeat last night even as every news organization declared Boxer the winner.
Almost every other statewide Democratic Party candidate also won – including San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom for lieutenant governor and State Assemblyman Dave Jones for insurance commissioner. There are two-and-a-half million more Democrats in California than Republicans.