California Rep. Eric Swalwell (D.) said Wednesday he disagreed with the state delegates who declined to endorse longtime Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D., Calif.) in her 2018 reelection bid, telling CNN California was a “state of immigrants” who may not be familiar with her.
At the California Democratic Party state convention over the weekend, Feinstein got support from only 37 percent of the delegates, compared to 54 percent for primary opponent Kevin de León, a State Senate leader and liberal firebrand. A candidate needed 60 percent to get the party’s official endorsement.
“Do you support the vote of the delegates?” CNN host John Berman asked Swalwell.
“I disagree with the delegates,” Swalwell said, adding he remembered endorsing Feinstein in a prior interview with Berman. “I’m still behind Senator Feinstein. I think you’re seeing who she is in the way that she’s standing up to the Trump administration, standing up for Dreamers, and doing all she can to reduce gun violence.”
“What does it tell you, though, that California Democrats have different concerns than you, apparently?” Berman asked.
“I think as she tells the voters about her record—you know, this is a state that is growing,” Swalwell said. “It’s a state of immigrants. We have new voters that may not over the past decade [have] been familiar with her, but I’m confident that once they know who she is, particularly millennial voters, that she’ll be quite popular with [them].”
At age 84, Feinstein is the oldest person currently serving in the Senate. She is seeking a fifth full term in office.
Feinstein has angered some progressives with her national security stances and her poorly received remark that President Donald Trump deserved “patience.”