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California - 8th District

Incumbent -- Nancy Pelosi (D) ; Running for re-election

Safe Democratic
Race Ratings Key
 

CQ Politics rates this race as "Safe," meaning the incumbent party is virtually certain to win the seat.

 

District Information

District Profile from Politics in America

San Francisco is famous for its landmarks, food and diverse collection of neighborhoods, from the Italian and Hispanic centers of North Beach and the Mission District to Chinatown, hippie haven Haight-Ashbury and the gay mecca of Castro.

More than 80 percent of the city's residents live in the 8th, which takes in the city's north and east and at 35 square miles is the state's smallest district. The 8th's sizable Asian population is the sixth-largest in the country. The Chinatown neighborhood is one of the largest Chinese communities in North America.

The city boasts many tourist destinations. Alcatraz prison -- used as a federal maximum-security facility from 1934 to 1963 and where Al Capone, George "Machine Gun" Kelly and Robert "Birdman" Stroud were once jailed -- receives more than 1 million visitors annually. Other popular attractions include: Fisherman's Wharf, on the city's northern waterfront; the Golden Gate Bridge, which connects San Francisco to Marin County; and the Bay Bridge, which traverses the neck of the bay over Treasure Island to Oakland. The city's part of the Golden Gate National Recreation Area hosts a Lucasfilm facility that opened in 2005 on the site of the former Letterman Army Medical Center at the Presidio.

The 8th also is home to San Francisco's financial district along Montgomery Street, known as the "Wall Street of the West." The Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco is there, as is the Transamerica Pyramid and the headquarters of brokerage firm Charles Schwab. The city also has a biomedical industry led by the University of California at San Francisco, the city's second-largest employer after local government.

The Democratic Party dominates the 8th. In the 2008 presidential election, Barack Obama sailed to victory here with 85 percent of the district's vote. In 2010, Democrat Jerry Brown took 80 percent of the district's gubernatorial vote.

Major Industry

Tourism, financial services, health care

Cities

San Francisco (pt.), 666,827

notable

The city's famous cable cars were developed by Andrew Smith Hallidie after he witnessed an accident involving a horse-drawn streetcar.

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