Following longtime Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein’s death on Friday at the age of 90, Gov. Gavin Newsom moved quickly to fill her vacant seat, as we wrote over the weekend we anticipated him to do.
His choice of EMILY’s List President Laphonza Butler is a non-traditional and history-making one. She becomes the first openly gay Black woman to serve in the Senate and will be the only Black woman in the Senate when she is sworn in on Tuesday. Now the biggest question is whether she will enter the already-crowded fray for a full-term in 2024, a race which has long been underway. In what amounts to a major concession, Newsom removed one of the biggest caveats he initially cited in his appointment criteria — that whoever he chose would only be an interim appointment, simply serving out Feinstein’s final year.
Butler has yet to say whether she will stand for election in 2024, but we could know by the end of next week whether she is seriously considering it. The deadline to seek the California Democratic Party
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