Results: Republican Rep. Young Kim defeats Democrat Asif Mahmood in California's 40th Congressional District election

Kim Mahmood 2x1
Young Kim's campaign; Asif Mahmood's campaign; Insider
  • Rep. Young Kim defeated Democrat Asif Mahmood in California's 40th Congressional District.

  • The 40th District is an affluent, suburban district anchored in Orange County.

  • Redistricting moved Kim to friendlier territory, but tasked her with reintroducing herself to a new constituency.

Republican Rep. Young Kim won her bid for a second term in office against Democrat Asif Mahmood in California's 40th Congressional District.

Polls closed in the state at 8 p.m. local time, or 11 p.m. EST.

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California's 40th Congressional District candidates

Kim, a freshman representative, sits on the House Committees on Foreign Affairs, Science, Space and Technology, and Small Business.

In 2020, Kim, fellow California Republican Rep. Michelle Steel, and Democratic Rep. Marilyn Strickland of Washington, made history as the first Korean American women ever elected to Congress. In a close contest, Kim defeated incumbent Democrat Gil Cisneros by just over 1 percentage point, flipping back the House seat she conceded to Cisneros in 2018.

Taking a page from the GOP playbook, Kim's campaign focused on inflation and border security. On abortion, an issue she has consistently voted against, Kim told the Los Angeles Times she was "pro-life," but that she respected the Supreme Court's decision and believed abortion should be largely left to the states.

Prior to her time on Capitol Hill, South Korean-born Kim, who has been a steady presence in Orange County's Asian community, worked as the director of community relations and Asian affairs for former Republican Rep. Ed Royce. She also served in the California State Assembly from 2014 to 2016.

Mahmood, Kim's challenger, is a pulmonologist. Born and raised in Pakistan, he immigrated to the United States after receiving his medical degree.

If elected, he said he would have supported abortion rights and fought to codify Roe v. Wade as federal law, he told the Times.

Voting history for California's 40th Congressional District

California's 40th Congressional District is an affluent, suburban district anchored in Orange County. It includes Aliso Viejo, Mission Viejo, Rancho Santa Margarita, and Tustin, but also extends into Corona in Riverside County and Chino Hills in San Bernardino County.

The district was among the most changed in the once-in-a-decade redistricting process following the 2020 Census; Kim has not previously represented four-fifths of the voters who live there.

Joe Biden had a just over 10 percentage point margin of victory over President Donald Trump under the district's previous boundaries in 2020 before the decennial redistricting process made it friendlier for Republicans. The new district would have narrowly favored Biden in 2020 by nearly a 2 percentage point margin, but Republicans have a slight voter registration advantage.

The money race

According to OpenSecrets, Kim raised $8.4 million, spent $8 million, and had $769,000 cash on hand, as of October 19. Her challenger, Mahmood, raised about $3.3 million, spent $3.2 million, and had $147,000 left to spend, as of October 19.

As of November 4, more than 20 super PACs, national party committees, politically active nonprofits, and other non-candidate groups together spent about $3 million to advocate for or against candidates in this race, including during the race's primary phase. The Congressional Leadership Fund, a Republican hybrid PAC that supported Kim, alone accounted for more than half that spending.

What experts say

The race between Kim and Mahmood was rated as "likely Republican" by Inside Elections, "likely Republican" by The Cook Political Report, and "likely Republican" by Sabato's Crystal Ball at the University of Virginia Center for Politics.

Read the original article on Business Insider