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CQ Politics rates this race as "Safe," meaning the incumbent party is virtually certain to win the seat.
District Profile from Politics in America
The Democratic 38th is a growing middle- and working-class Hispanic-majority district. A sideways "L" shape, the district takes in the city of Norwalk in southeastern Los Angeles County and stretches north along Interstate 5 to include nearly half of East Los Angeles. It then runs east through Montebello, Pico Rivera and La Puente, before extending a thin arm parallel to the California 60 freeway into the Inland Valley to take in Pomona, the district's largest city, at the county's eastern edge.
The 38th relies on its many small businesses in the district and includes the East Los Angeles business district. Economic downturns have hurt local retail operations, many of which are owned or operated by Hispanics. Unemployment-rate spikes in the city of Industry, an almost entirely industrial area in the center of the district, have hit the few thousand businesses that the city claims once provided more than 80,000 jobs. Like the commuter towns near Industry, Norwalk is mainly a bedroom community, but it received a publicity boost in 2006 when the multi-agency Joint Regional Intelligence Center opened.
Although it has a large blue-collar workforce, the district contains some affluent and conservative areas such as Hacienda Heights, Rowland Heights (shared with the 42nd) and a narrow sliver of Whittier. Montebello is a middle-class Hispanic area with an Armenian community. Southeast Pomona is densely populated and has experienced some crime problems in recent years. Efforts to revitalize the city's dilapidated downtown are ongoing.
The 38th's working-class residents ensure that the district votes reliably Democratic. Barack Obama received 71 percent of the vote here in the 2008 presidential election. California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, and Cerritos College (shared with the 39th) add students to the Democratic mix.
Pomona, 149,058; Norwalk, 105,549; Pico Rivera, 62,942; Montebello, 62,500; Hacienda Heights (unincorporated) (pt.), 53,602
The Pomona Swap Meet and Car Show is billed as the largest collection of antique cars, parts and accessories on the West Coast.
|2010||general||Grace Napolitano (D)||85,459||73.4%|
|Robert Vaughn (R)||30,883||26.5%|
|2008||general||Grace Napolitano (D)||130,211||81.7%|
|Christopher Agrella (LIBERT)||29,113||18.3%|
|2006||general||Grace Napolitano (D)||75,181||75.3%|
|Sidney Street (R)||24,620||24.7%|
|2004||general||Grace Napolitano (D)||116,851||100%|
|2002||general||Grace Napolitano (D)||62,600||71.1%|
|Alex Burrola (R)||23,126||26.3%|
|Al Cuperus (LIBERT)||2,301||2.6%|
|2008||Barack Obama: 71.3%||John McCain: 26.6%|
|2004||John Kerry: 65%||George W. Bush: 34%|
|2000||Al Gore: 67%||George W. Bush: 27%|