When Mike Garcia beat Christy Smith in the special election for California’s 25th Congressional District on May 12, the Republican Party understandably celebrated. Not only was it the first time the GOP had flipped a California district since 1998, but it was also seen as a reliable indicator for a Republican national victory come November 3. The openly-expressed sentiment among Republicans was that if they could win in CA-25, they could win back the house. The Signal. June 29, 2020.