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Rep. Ken Calvert Trails Democrat In 41st Congressional District

Patch 11/9/2022 Toni McAllister
Rep. Ken Calvert © Getty Images Rep. Ken Calvert

CORONA, CA — Rep. Ken Calvert (R-41) is facing a Democratic challenger who has a lead in election returns.

As of Wednesday morning, former federal prosecutor Will Rollins garnered 43,584 votes compared to the incumbent's 33,960.

Election Night vote counting is complete but results are not final.

Approximately 325,000 vote-by-mail and 10,000 provisional ballots still must be processed, according to the Riverside County Registrar of Voters. Work on those begins Wednesday morning. Ballots that are postmarked on or before Election Day also remain to be counted.

For 30 years Calvert has held his congressional seat in Southwest Riverside County, but recent redistricting shifted his constituency. District lines were redrawn to include more Democratic-leaning cities, like Palm Springs, and he lost Republican strongholds, such as Murrieta and much of Temecula. The 41st Congressional District now includes Canyon Lake, Indian Wells, Lake Elsinore, La Quinta, Menifee, Norco, Palm Desert, Palm Springs, Rancho Mirage, Wildomar, and portions of Corona, Eastvale and Riverside.

Calvert was first elected to the U.S. House of Representatives in 1992 and is one of its most senior members. If Rollins' lead holds, it would boost Democrats' battle to hold a House majority — but national election returns show the GOP gaining seats.

Calvert, who will turn 70 next year, has helped secure funding for local infrastructure and has supported pro-growth policies in the region. Ahead of this year's primary election, he garnered the support of former President Donald Trump, who called Calvert "a leader on National Security."

The Riverside County lawmaker's support for Trump was steadfast throughout the former president's term.

Calvert was also committed to the Trump cause in the 2020 election aftermath. The Riverside County leader joined more than 125 other House Republicans in signing an amicus brief to the U.S. Supreme Court that backed a Texas lawsuit seeking to overturn the 2020 presidential election results. While he condemned the Jan. 6 attack on the U.S. Capitol building, Calvert also voted to deny certification of election results from Arizona and Pennsylvania — states where then-President-Elect Joe Biden defeated Trump.

Following Biden's inauguration, Calvert issued a statement pledging to work with the new administration while promising to push priorities for his conservative base.

But the support for Trump — especially following the 2020 election — may have hurt his chances in the newly redrawn 41st Congressional District.

Rollins put Calvert's support for the former president's actions front and center in his campaign.

He said he was running for Congress because the attack on the U.S. Capitol underscored why America needs "a new generation of leaders to end toxic divisions that threaten our democracy and prevent us from solving problems together."

After Calvert secured the Trump endorsement, Rollins issued a statement:

"It's a sad irony that Donald Trump's endorsement of my opponent as a 'leader on National Security' also comes at the same time the former president called Putin as a 'savvy genius' for invading Ukraine."

The article Rep. Ken Calvert Trails Democrat In 41st Congressional District appeared first on Lake Elsinore-Wildomar Patch.

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