This was a convention that Senator Feinstein had to endure, but it should have no real impact on her clash with de León in June and, most likely, in November. Yes, the endorsement could have meant a needed infusion of money for the cash-strapped de León, but certainly not enough to fill the chasm of contributions that now exists. In 1990, Democratic State Convention delegates booed Feinstein when she supported the death penalty and gave the party’s gubernatorial endorsement to then-Attorney General John Van de Kamp. She went on to beat Van de Kamp in the June (closed) Primary, losing narrowly to Republican Pete Wilson in the general election.

And there is real concern that the exit of GOP incumbent Congressman Darrell Issa from the 49th CD race makes flipping that seat from Republican to Democrat that much harder, with 5 Dems.—none of whom could snag the party’s endorsement–facing off against at least one credible GOP candidate in June. In the short time before the March 9th filing deadline, expect to see efforts by Democratic honchos in Washington and California to twist arms and try to persuade some candidates to forgo these overloaded contests, so that only one or two top-tier Democrats are competing in the primary. How successful these efforts will be remains to be seen. Candidate fever is hard to break.