By Miriam Raftery
Photo: Brian Jones, shown at Politics in Paradise, has returned to the Legislature
Update December 13, 2018: In the final count, Jones won with 53% of the vote to 47% for Griffith, the closest margin in recent history for this district.
November 8, 2018 (San Diego’s East County) – Brian Jones, a familiar face in East County Politics, will be the new State Senator in the 38th State Senate District. Jones, a Republican former Assemblyman and current Santee City Councilman, has defeated Cal Fire Captain Jeff Griffith a Democrat, by a 56 to 44 percent margin with 72% of precincts counted.
Jones will fill the vacancy left by Senator Joel Anderson’s retirement due to term limits. Anderson appears to have narrowly won his race to serve on the state Board of Equalization.
In other East County legislative races, State Senator Ben Hueso, a Democrat, won reelection handily with 61% of the vote over Republican challenger Luis Vargas in the 40th district.
Assemblyman Randy Voepel, a Republican, won reelection with a solid 62% of the vote over challenger James Elia, a Democrat, in the 71st district, despite controversy over exaggerations in Voepel’s military record raised by a Republican challenger defeated in the primary.
Assemblywoman Shirley Weber, a Democratic educator, also breezed to a comfortable victory over Republican John Moore in the 79th district.