Padilla will run in concurrent elections next year — a special election to finish the remainder of Harris‘ term through 2023 and a regular election for a full six-year term. The plan is to leverage Padilla’s popularity — especially among Latinos — into stronger Latino turnout in the state, where they make up about 30 percent of the electorate. Part of the goal, Latino Democratic operatives and leaders say, is to deliver Democratic wins in districts with high populations of Latinos that have been overlooked by the party in the past. “We want to use the momentum of Padilla being the first Latino senator to turn out new and young voters,” said Christopher Guerrero, vice president of California-based J&Z Strategies, who is working with Nuestro PAC on the effort. “We know turning them out will also trickle down and affect other tickets in the state — and Nuestro PAC is very keen on winning back the seats we lost in 2020.” The effort will focus on seats currently held by Republican Reps. David Valadao, Mike Garcia, Young Kim, Michelle Steel and Darrell Issa. In three of those districts, a Republican ousted a Democratic incumbent. Earlier in 2020, Garcia flipped his district in a special election after the resignation of Democratic Rep. Katie Hill. Guerrero, who served on Padilla’s transition team for the Senate, explained that most of the seats being targeted are in the Orange County and southeast Los Angeles County area, which has seen a major growth in Latino population “and not a lot of outreach to the community as new voters.” “Latinos are such a sizable part of those districts that if we make a concerted effort to talk to them, we can turn them out and flip these districts blue,” said Eileen Garcia, executive director of Nuestro PAC. The redistricting process in California — led by an independent citizens’ commission — is still ongoing, meaning the state will not have a final map for several months. The commission is set to release official draft maps on Nov. 10. California is slated to lose one congressional seat for the first time in its history, shrinking the number of House seats from 53 to 52. State and national Latino Democrats have long called on the Democratic Party to invest more in early outreach efforts — as opposed to in the final weeks of a campaign — to get Latinos out to vote. Those calls have been especially loud following the 2020 election, where Latinos across the country shifted incrementally toward Donald Trump. Latino D . . . read the full article here.