Los Angeles Times

New poll finds volatile race for second place in California governor's contest

SACRAMENTO, Calif. - The fight for second place in California's governor's race between Republican John Cox and Democrat Antonio Villaraigosa remains unpredictable and volatile as the June 5 primary approaches, according to a new USC Dornsife/Los Angeles Times poll.

Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom led both by 10 percentage points or more, validating every other poll that suggests it's a certainty the Democrat will claim one of the two spots on the November ballot.

With the second slot up for grabs and a substantial bloc of undecided voters two weeks from the election, Newsom's campaign has unleased a barrage of ads in an attempt to manipulate the primary vote. The strategy aims to influence who he will face in the general election, with Cox - a conservative out of step with California's left-leaning voters on many issues including immigration policy - among his top choices.

Newsom's tactics are

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