Incumbent Bob Wieckowski dominated the race for Assembly District 25 against ArLyne Diamond, a Republican management consultant who has never held office before.
He outpaced her from the start and Diamond was being able to catch up.
Diamond expected to do well among voters in her base around Santa Clara County, a conservative oasis in a region of Democrats. She said she would go after the Republican and Libertarian vote, as well as Democrats willing to vote for her instead of the incumbent because they are anxious and angry over decisions made by Democrats in the state capital.
But she may have been hampered by reports that the state revoked her psychology license in 1989. Diamond said the revocation was retaliation for trying to stop false child-abuse allegations and said the past has nothing to do with her political aspirations.
Wieckowski, a 57-year-old former bankruptcy lawyer, was elected in 2010 to the state Assembly. That was before redistricting turned District 20 into District 25 and pushed the boundaries farther south into Santa Clara County from Wieckowski's stronghold of Fremont, where he served for six years as a city council member.
Coordinating the unwieldy new 25th District is going to be "a challenge," Wieckowski said during the lead-up to Election Day.
He focused his first-term efforts in Sacramento on, among other efforts, requiring disclosure of chemicals used in "fracking," the common reference to controversial drilling process of hydraulic fracturing to free oil and gas trapped in rock.
He campaigned for Proposition 30, the state sales and upper-income tax increase that would help fund education.
Diamond was adamantly opposed to the tax because if it fails, Gov. Jerry Brown is threatening "trigger" cuts that won't necessarily reduce the excessive expenditures in government, she said. Records show that the Psychology Examining Committee of the California Board of Medical Quality Assurance found Diamond improperly used her influence as a therapist to secure a $30,000 loan from a patient's mother. Diamond said California enacted rules about dual personal and professional relationships with patients and their families after the loan. She said she has about 75 reference letters attesting to her competence and ethics. The state board countered that the ethics code of the American Association for Marriage and Family Therapy applied at the time.
In 1992, the state Board of Psychology denied her request for license reinstatement, a refusal Diamond attributed to an ongoing backlash for her whistle-blowing.