He beat her by roughly four points.
Two years ago the previous Republican occupant, Randy Cunningham, beat Francine Busby (yes, the same lady) by a whopping 20 points.
In fairness, the margin of victory for Cunningham was due in part to a high name recognition established by his lengthy career...and contrary to recent events, he was well-liked. Even so, a 16-point shift in just two years should have both parties taking a closer look at the bigger picture.
This race has been touted as some sort of fortune telling device for the November elections. The outcome was supposed to give the world a crystal ball view of the national electorate by answering a simple question: Just how hated are the Republicans?
While we didn't get an answer to that question, we were sent a message...
Busby and the Dems had one campaign strategy: Republicans are so evil that we could run a pot-bellied pig on the ticket and walk off with 75% of the vote...even if the pig is gay and tried to marry another gay pig.
They were so sure of this assessment that Busby didn't even bother to develop an issue agenda but Brian Bilbray did...it was a single-issue agenda but it was the right issue.
The Bilbray campaign strategy was: If we oppose amnesty for illegal aliens, they will come.
Now then, all the political analysts from the world of serial news will spend the next several days if not months trying to decipher the secret code—the message voters are supposedly sending to politicians everywhere.
Undoubtedly we will hear stupid commentary such as people are obviously mad at Republicans and if that race was anywhere else Bilbray would not have won or even worse, people love the Democrats these days.
The Democrats will point to the $5 million dollars spent by the Bilbray campaign and suggest his victory was bought; an expensive strategy the GOP will not be able to employ nationwide.
The Republicans will acknowledge that immigration reform was the only factor in this election and criticize Democrats for being on the wrong side of the issue...and then they will reiterate their commitment to comprehensive reform and a clear path to citizenship for the 12-20 million illegal aliens in America today.
There was a message to be found in yesterday's election:
The Democrats are wrong; the Republicans are wrong...Bilbray is right.