Filipino American Democrat T.J. Cox won his bid for Congress against Republican U.S. Rep. David Valadao on Wednesday following a three-week vote count in California’s 21st Congressional District.
Cox, who trailed since election night, pulled ahead by 506 votes when Kings County released its final vote totals. In that update, Cox won 52.4 percent of the 1,438 remaining votes.
According to the Cox campaign, while there are still outstanding ballots in Fresno and Kern counties, these votes heavily favored Cox in the updates since Election Day.
Cox, whose mother is Filipino, is California’s first Filipino American congressman. His district, the 21st Congressional District, includes the city of Delano, historically a hub for Filipino agriculture workers and the birthplace of the Filipino-led labor strike that launched the United Farm Workers movement of the 1960s. That movement sparked historic changes in labor laws across the United States that continue until today.
In a statement Cox said:
“Voters across the district resonated with our message of expanding health care, creating good jobs, and fighting for our families’ futures. I am truly humbled to have received so much support. I am honored to be the next Representative serving all of our communities throughout the 21st District. Now that the election is over, it’s time to get to work.”
The Cox campaign told BA that the final vote totals will be released on Dec. 6. California’s Secretary of State will validate the totals by Dec. 16.