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Former speaker's 'realistic' prediction

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Coming down to Ventura County for Election Day coverage this morning, I ran into former Speaker Fabian Nunez on the plane from Sacramento. I asked him how many seats he thought Democrats would pick up in the Assembly today.

"Four to six," he said.

After I arched my eyebrows a bit, he revised the assessment.

"Realistically, three to four."

The difference between the optimistic forecast and the realistic one will make all the difference in Ventura County's contested 37th Assembly District. If incumbent Republican Audra Strickland were to lose that race to Democrat Ferial Masry, it would likely mean a turnout scenario in which Democrats pick up a half-dozen seats.

If Democratic gains are limited to three or four, a Ventura County upset would likely not be among them.

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95 percent accurate
Over the last 25 presidential elections, Ventura County voters have backed the winner 24 times, or over 95 percent of the time. It is one of only a handful of counties in the nation that has been such a predictable bellwether.
about Timm Herdt
Timm Herdt
The Ventura County Star's Sacramento Bureau Chief Timm Herdt on state issues and politics from Sacramento to Ventura County. He can be contacted at therdt@vcstar.com