The California Republican Party elected Jessica Patterson as its new party chair Sunday in what is being hailed as a win for House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and the party establishment.
According to the Associated Press, 1,200 delegates met Sunday to select the party’s new leaders. Establishment favorite Patterson beat back challenges from more populist candidates from former state Assemblyman Travis Allen and activist Steve Frank, winning with roughly 55 percent of the vote.
Both Frank and Allen wanted the party to stand firm behind President Donald Trump while Patterson supported putting more focus on local issues. Ultimately, Patterson’s vision won out. (RELATED: California Democratic Party Chair Calls For In-N-Out Boycott After Burger Joint Donates To Republicans)
Congratulations to Jessica Patterson on her new election as Chair of the California Republican Party!
We also want to thank Travis Allen & Steve Frank on their race to become chair.
Now is the time to come together and to fight for a better CA. pic.twitter.com/ntT4vLqymv
— CAGOP (@CAGOP) February 24, 2019
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) February 24, 2019
— Kevin McCarthy (@kevinomccarthy) February 25, 2019
Thirty-eight-year-old Patterson is a Latina and a mother of two children. She is also the first woman to ever be elected to lead the state party.
The California Republican Party has taken a beating in recent years, having not won a statewide election since 2006 and having lost multiple congressional seats in the former Republican stronghold of Orange County during the 2018 midterm elections.
Additionally, Republicans now rank third in voter registration in the state, behind Democrats and Independents. As of the 2018 midterms, only 25 percent of registered California voters were Republicans.
Patterson most recently served as the CEO of California Trailblazers, an organization dedicated to recruiting and training potential Republican candidates.