RIVERSIDE —And, now there are five.  Four women and one man have qualified to be on the March 3 ballot to fill the vacant seat in state Senate District 28.

The three Democrats seeking the seat are Elizabeth Romeo of Indio, Joy Silver of Palm Springs, and Anna Nevenic of Palm Springs. Both Silver and Nevenic challenged former state Sen. Jeff Stone for the seat in 2018. Nevenic lost in the primary election on June 5, 2018. Stone ultimately prevailed over Silver and resigned his seat to start work on Nov. 1 as the Western Regional Director of the United States Department of Labor in the Trump administration.

The two Republicans are Assemblywoman Melissa Melendez of Lake Elsinore and John Schwab of Temecula, a real estate broker/small business owner.

Nevenic, a nurse and author,  is a perennial candidate. She was a candidate for the Trustee Area 3 seat on the Palm Springs Unified School District Board of Education in California. Nevenic lost the general election on November 4, 2014. She was also a Democratic candidate for Senate District 28 of the California State Senate in 2014. She was defeated by Bonnie Garcia (R) and Jeff Stone (R) in the blanket primary on June 3, 2014.

Nevenic also ran unsuccessfully for District 40 of the California State Senate in a 2013 special election.

A candidate must receive more than 50% of the vote in order to win on March 3. With five people now in the race, the odds of anyone candidate receiving more than 50 percent of the vote are significantly reduced. If no candidate garners that majority, the top-two vote-getters will advance to a run-off election on May 12, 2020.

The expansive state Senate District 28, which leans Republican, lies entirely in Riverside County, stretches from the vineyards of the Temecula Valley to the Colorado River and includes the cities of Blythe, Canyon Lake, Cathedral City, Coachella, Desert Hot Springs, Indian Wells, Indio, Lake Elsinore, La Quinta, Murrieta, Temecula, Palm Springs, Rancho Mirage, and Wildomar.



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