It was supposed to be a relatively easy victory for Los Angeles County District Attorney Steve Cooley in the race for California’s attorney general—up against liberal, anti-death penalty Kamala Harris, District Attorney of San Francisco, Cooley with strong support from law enforcement groups up and down the state was expected to roll over the younger Harris. But as the days of the midterm campaign wound down Harris worked hard to close earlier poll gaps and here we are two weeks removed from election day and she has a slim lead, of roughly 30,000 votes, over Cooley. As a slow and steady count of the ballots continues the recriminations between the two campaigns are heating up, with Cooley’s campaign questioning the legitimacy of thousands of votes because names on the ballots were not being matched to voter’s registration cards. The Harris camp has accused Cooley’s monitors of “aggressively attempt[ing] to have ballots disqualified” and both sides have asked for more of their monitors to be allowed to watch the counting. The deadline to certify the race is still two weeks away—will California have an attorney general in place by then without a flurry of lawsuits?
Kevin Spillane, strategist for the Steve Cooley for Attorney General campaign
Ace Smith, chief strategist for the Kamala Harris for Attorney General campaign
Frank Stoltze, KPCC political reporter
Efrain Escobedo, executive liaison for the Los Angeles Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk's Office