By GUY KOVNER
The first wide-open race for a North Coast seat in Congress in 20 years has drawn a crowd of a dozen candidates, elections officials said.
There will be eight Democrats, two Republicans and two no party preference candidates on the June 5 primary election ballot in the new 2nd Congressional District.
And for the first time in state history, all voters will receive a ballot with all of the candidates in every partisan race, except for president and county central committee, and the top two vote-getters will move on to November’s general election.
The top two, open primary election system was approved by state voters in 2010.
It replaces a system in which primary voting was by partisan ballots and the top vote-getter in each qualified political party moved on to the general election.
Rep. Lynn Woolsey’s retirement this year, after the Petaluma Democrat’s 20 years in office, set the stage for a free-for-all in the new coastal district, which stretches from Marin County to the Oregon border, excluding Santa Rosa, Rohnert Park, Cotati and Sonoma Valley.
The competing Democrats are:
Susan Adams, Marin County supervisor, San Rafael; Andy Caffrey, activist, Redway in Humboldt County; William Courtney, physician, Mendocino; Larry Fritzlan, therapist, Mill Valley; Jared Huffman, state assemblyman, San Rafael; Stacey Lawson, educator and businesswoman, San Rafael; Tiffany Renee, Petaluma city councilwoman; and Norman Solomon, activist, Point Reyes Station.
The Republicans are:
Michael Halliwell, retired college professor, Cotati; and Daniel Roberts, securities broker, Mill Valley.
No party preference candidates:
Brooke Clarke, business owner, Ukiah; and John Lewallen, business owner, Philo.
Vote by mail ballots will be sent out in early May.
You can reach Staff Writer Guy Kovner at 521-5457 or firstname.lastname@example.org.