Dem Andrew Janz advances in bid to unseat Nunes

Dem Andrew Janz advances in bid to unseat Nunes
© Getty Images
Former county prosecutor Andrew Janz (D) is projected to win the second slot in California’s 22nd Congressional District primary, setting the stage for a high-profile clash with House Intelligence Committee Chairman Devin NunesDevin Gerald NunesThe Hill's 12:30 Report — Presented by Kidney Care Partners — Lawmakers scramble as shutdown deadline nears ‘Fox & Friends’ host asks if McCabe opening FBI probe into Trump was attempt to ‘overthrow government’ Nunes says GOP lawmakers looking through Russia transcripts, will make DOJ referrals MORE (R).
 
The Associated Press called the race for Janz at 11:22 p.m. PDT.
 
 
But Democrats are emboldened by Nunes’s ardent support of Trump during the investigation into Russia’s election meddling, which has drawn headlines and made Nunes a polarizing political figure. 
 
Janz, a first-time candidate, was the clear Democratic front-runner in the primary race. Since California’s “jungle primary” allows the top two candidates regardless of party to advance to the general election, he had been expected to move forward. 
 
Janz has made the race a direct referendum on Nunes’s relationship with Trump amid the ongoing Russia probe. Nunes has taken center-stage as one of Trump’s biggest congressional defenders — as head of the House Intelligence Committee, he's sought to discredit special counsel Robert MuellerRobert Swan MuellerSasse: US should applaud choice of Mueller to lead Russia probe MORE's Russia investigation and has accused the Justice Department of being biased against Trump. 
 
Even though it’s not clear whether the controversy surrounding Nunes will be enough to make the race competitive, Janz has effectively parlayed the news into a strong fundraising haul, having raised almost $1.9 million this cycle.
 
But Nunes’s visible role in defending the president has endeared him to many on the right as well. Ivanka TrumpIvana (Ivanka) Marie TrumpFour names emerge for UN position: report Trump dismisses Ann Coulter after criticism: 'I hardly know her' On The Money: Trump to sign border deal, declare emergency to build wall | Senate passes funding bill, House to follow | Dems promise challenge to emergency declaration MORE, the president’s elder daughter, is headlining a fundraiser for Nunes later this month, and the incumbent has raised $4.8 million this cycle.