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The Latest: Democrat wins open Los Angeles Assembly seat

April 5, 2018

FILE - In this May 4, 2017, file photo, Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra, D-Pacoima speaks at the Capitol, in Sacramento, Calif. Los Angeles-area voters go to the polls Tuesday, April 3, 2018, in special elections to fill three open Assembly seats. Two spots are vacant because Matt Dababneh and Bocanegra resigned amid harassment claims. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli, File)

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) — The Latest on special elections in Southern California (all times local):

5:45 p.m.

Democrat Sydney Kamlager has won a special election for a Los Angeles-area seat in the California Assembly.

Los Angeles County announced Wednesday evening an estimated 7,900 ballots were still uncounted from the Tuesday election. But Kamlager’s 17,000 votes already tallied assure she will have more than half the vote when results are certified.

Kamlager will replace former Assemblyman Sebastian Ridley-Thomas, who resigned last year.

Thousands of ballots are still uncounted in the other two special elections held Thursday. Those races will likely advance to runoffs between the top-two finishers. Nearly 500 votes separate second and third place in the race to replace former Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra.

Roughly 2,700 separate second and third in the race to replace former Assemblyman Matt Dababneh.

10:15 a.m.

Early results show less than 10 percent turnout in three Los Angeles-area special elections for open seats in the California Assembly.

Los Angeles County officials released the semi-official results Wednesday, but have not said how many ballots still need to be counted.

The returns show Democrat Sydney Kamlager with 68 percent of the vote in her bid to represent the 54th District. That’s well above the 50 percent threshold needed to avoid a June runoff.

She would replace former Assemblyman Sebastian Ridley-Thomas who resigned last year citing health problems.

The races to replace former Assemblymen Matt Dababneh and Raul Bocanegra will likely advance to runoffs. Democrats Jesse Gabriel and Luz Rivas, respectively, lead in the races for those seats.

All three seats will be up for re-election in November.

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11:50 p.m.

Democrat Sydney Kamlager had a strong lead Tuesday night with most of the votes counted in special elections to fill three open seats in the California Assembly.

Kamlager had won nearly 68 percent of the votes in early returns in the race to replace former Assemblyman Sebastian Ridley-Thomas.

If any candidate wins more than half the vote, they win outright. Otherwise the top-two finishers in each race advance to a June runoff.

Democrat Luz Rivas was in the lead with 41 percent of the vote to replace former Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra in early returns.

In the race to replace former Assemblyman Matt Dababneh, Democrat Jesse Gabriel was in the lead with 31 percent of the vote but closely followed by Republican Justin Clark with 27 percent.

Ballots were still being counted Tuesday night.

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8:45 p.m.

Polls have closed in Southern California where residents have been voting for new representatives in the state Legislature.

Preliminary returns are inconclusive with less than 11 percent of precincts reporting in all three districts.

The Tuesday election is expected to determine which candidates will advance to the next round of voting for three open Assembly seats.

If any candidate wins more than half of votes Tuesday, they win outright. Otherwise the top-two finishers in each race advance to a June runoff.

Candidates are vying to replace three male lawmakers who resigned last year. Two quit amid sexual harassment allegations. Another left citing health problems. Their departures could make room for more women in the Legislature. Nearly 80 percent of California lawmakers are men.

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9:45 a.m.

Los Angeles-area residents are heading to the polls to replace three Assembly lawmakers who resigned last year.

They’re voting Tuesday to fill seats vacated by Democrats Raul Bocanegra and Matt Dababneh, who resigned last year after women accused them of sexual misconduct. Another Democrat, Sebastian Ridley-Thomas, quit citing health problems.

The top two candidates in each race will head to a runoff in June if no one gets more than 50 percent of the vote.

Nearly 800,000 people are registered to vote in the three districts and Democrats outnumber Republicans in all three. Campaign operatives with several candidate said they expect turnout to be around 9 percent.

Los Angeles County says the elections are estimated to cost $1.6 million.

Polls close at 8 p.m.

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