In California, it's the productive inland versus the powerful coast:
Mr. Vidak's campaign theme was the bifurcation of California: the coastal liberal elites versus the Valley folks. "We're getting left behind here," he says. "They don't view us as important."Case in point: The unemployment rate in Mr. Vidak's district is about 15%—two to three times as high as in the Bay Area—and exceeds 30% in some communities. The culprit? "Our water has been cut off by the far left," he says.Regulations to protect smelt from the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta water pumps have created a California water shortage, which is particularly acute in the Valley. This year farmers south of the delta will receive only 20% of their contracted allocations. An irking irony is that the smelt's biggest killer is the wastewater that Sacramento dumps into the delta."It's fish versus farmer," he says, and liberals are siding with the fish.Other species-protection policies have removed thousands of acres of land from production, endangering the livelihoods of farmers and ranchers. Meanwhile, California's bullet train, beloved by liberals, will slash through Mr. Vidak's district and raze hundreds of farms, homes and businesses."We don't have clean drinking water in some areas of our district," Mr. Vidak says. "And they want to build an $80 billion bullet train!"His election opponent, Ms. Perez, endorsed the bullet train "as the biggest jobs plan in California history." However, she campaigned principally on raising the state minimum wage to $9.25 from $8, an issue that plays well in union-dominated, urban areas but didn't resonate with the Valley's farmers and small business owners.Notwithstanding her Hispanic heritage, Ms. Perez appeared out of touch with Valley voters' values and concerns. She raised twice as much money as Mr. Vidak, but 90% of her contributions came from outside the district.//
For the record, I noticed the "colonial inland" feature three decades ago, when I was applying to the University of California and noticed that all but one campus (Davis) was within 5 miles from the Pacific ocean.