The San Joaquin Valley is often touted — along with Orange County and Southern California’s Inland Empire — as one of the Republican Party’s bulwarks against the rising tide of Democratic control.
But last November, Fresno County — the very heart of the Valley — once again went for Democrat Barack Obama over Republican Mitt Romney in the presidential election. It wasn’t a blowout. Obama won 49.7% to Romney’s 47.9%. So Fresno County is light blue, but blue nonetheless.
How did it break down?
Generally speaking, east went for Romney (in the 23rd Assembly District, which elected Fresno Republican Jim Patterson, Romney won 55% to Obama’s 43%) and west for Obama (in the 31st Assembly District, which reelected Fresno Democrat Henry T. Perea, Obama won big, 62% to Romney’s 36%).
These are, of course, generalizations. Turnout, for instance, was higher in the 23rd District.
For those keeping score across the Valley, the three main Fresno-area congressional districts (Republican Tom McClintock represents the sparsely populated foothill and Sierra parts) broke down like this:
In the 21st Congressional District, Obama won 55% to Romney’s 44%. This district, which covers parts of Kern, Tulare and Fresno counties and all of Kings County, elected Hanford Republican David Valadao.
In the 22nd Congressional District, Romney won 57% to Obama’s 42%. This district, which covers parts of Tulare and Fresno counties, reelected Tulare Republican Devin Nunes.
And in the 16th Congressional District, Obama won 59% to Romney’s 39%. This district, which covers parts of Fresno and Madera counties and all of Merced County, reelected Fresno Democrat Jim Costa.