LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) – In a race where it appeared two-term incumbent Republican Rep. Mimi Walters would hold on to her seat, Democrat Katie Porter pulled off an upset Wednesday to win election to the 45th congressional district.
In the closely fought suburbs of the 45th District, which stretches from Anaheim Hills to Mission Viejo, Porter, a UC Irvine law professor, pulled off a surprise victory over incumbent Walters.
The latest results Thursday has Porter leading Walters by 51.2 to 48.8 percent. About 6,200 votes separated the two. The Associated Press has declared Porter the winner, although Walters hasn’t officially conceded.
The 45th district includes Tustin, Irvine and Laguna Hills. Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton won this district by more than 5 points in the 2016 General Election.
Walters won by a landslide in 2016, capturing 58 percent of the vote. She has been a member of the House since 2015. Porter becomes the first Democrat to with the district since its inception in 1983.
Orange County, a one-time Republican stronghold, saw two other GOP-held House seats going to Democrats. In the 48th District, 15-time incumbent Rep. Dana Rohrabacher lost to real estate executive Harley Rouda. In the 49th District, Democrat Mike Levin captured the U.S. House seat held for years by retiring Republican Rep. Darrell Issa.
However, Republicans retained control of the Senate.