House Republicans view California’s 21st Congressional District as a strong pickup opportunity in the party’s longshot bid to recapture the majority they lost two years ago. And it’s getting ugly on the ground in the Central Valley as the race tightens and both campaigns throw jabs.
Rep. T.J. Cox, a California Democrat who won the seat in 2018 against Republican incumbent Rep. David Valadao, is locked in a brutal rematch to hold the district, extending across Kings County and areas of Fresno, Tulare, and Kern counties.
Cox raised almost as much as Valadao in 2018 and beat the California Republican by less than 1,000 votes. The district was one of seven Republicans lost in California, as House Democrats won their first majority in eight years. Now, it’s a key component in Hosue Republican efforts to regain the majority, which will take a net pickup of about 17 seats. That’s a prospect that looks more difficult since Democratic presidential nominee Joe Biden leads President Trump in polls.