Final June 3 primary election results show that Chris Mitchum will be Rep. Lois Capps’ challenger for the District 24 congressional seat in the November general election.
The California secretary of state received final election results for the June 3 primary from San Luis Obispo and Ventura counties Friday; Santa Barbara County filed final results Thursday.
Capps, D-Santa Barbara, had a comfortable lead against her eight opponents with 43.67 percent of the vote, the results show. It was her challenger that was in question for days after the initial returns were reported on primary night.
Mitchum, a self-proclaimed Tea Party Republican, secured 15.8 percent of the vote, squeaking past Republican Justin Fareed by just 614 votes. Fareed received 15.34 percent, the final results show.
In San Luis Obispo County, Capps captured 44.09 percent of the vote, with Mitchum coming in second with 17.02 percent and Fareed in third place with 16.76 percent of the vote.
The 24th District covers all of Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo counties and a portion of Ventura County.
Capps, 76, is seeking her ninth full term in the U.S. House of Representatives. She faced an unprecedented field of challengers in the primary because of a newly redrawn district with more political diversity than in the past. Two Democrats, five Republicans and an independent challenged Capps for her seat.
Mitchum, a 70-year-old actor and former director of the Screen Actors Guild, campaigned as the “true conservative” among the field. He ran unsuccessfully for the Republican primary nomination in 2012, losing to Abel Maldonado, who then was defeated by Capps.
Capps identified Mitchum as her chief opponent in the June 3 primary, judging from her campaign ads, which targeted Mitchum and none of the other challengers.
Fareed, a newcomer to the political scene, launched a massive ad campaign to get his name in front of voters. A former congressional aide, Fareed, 26, is vice president of his family’s Santa Barbara-based sports products company.