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California Special Election Held Amid Fire, Blackout Fears

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – A Republican attempting to join her husband in California’s Legislature is pitted against a Democratic opponent in a special election that had officials preparing for the possibility of wildfires or blackouts. Republican Megan Dahle and Democrat Elizabeth Betancourt are each trying to succeed Brian Dahle. He represented Assembly District 1 until he won a special Senate election in June. The sprawling rural district stretches from suburban Sacramento to the state’s northeastern corner. The district’s registered voters are 40% Republican and 28% Democrats. Secretary of State Alex Padilla has been working with county elections officials and electric utilities to make sure voting can continue even if there are fires or power outages, though none are expected. Utilities have periodically been blacking out much of California to prevent equipment from sparking fires.