Neither Feinstein nor her challenger, State Senator Kevin De Leon, captured the 60 percent of votes needed from the delegates at this past weekend's State Democratic party convention.
Orange County's other three Republican-held congressional districts, which were all targeted by the national Democratic Party, also failed to produce clear Democratic endorsements due to numerous inter-party candidates splitting votes. "It should never take a primary challenge for California's leadership to stand up for California values", he said.
Despite the rebuke from the party, Feinstein enjoys a large lead in campaign cash and public polling as an incumbent. Add in the fact that there is no Republican candidate in the race and the approaching showdown between Feinstein and de Leon was a foregone conclusion.
As Feinstein addressed the thousands of Democrats gathered in San Diego for their annual convention, she touted her tenure, notably her efforts on gun control.More news: Temperatures plunge as 'beast from the east' takes hold of country
California runs on a system that allows the top two vote-getters to become eligible for the general election with no regard to the party represented.
The LA Times notes that "California has grown more liberal, Feinstein has angered part of the Democratic Party's base by her perceived moderation, including her call for "patience" with President Trump." It failed to unite behind a single candidate in the majority of statewide races, including for governor, where four Democrats are vying to replace outgoing Gov. Feinstein also recently said that former President Barack Obama's Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals, or DACA, which Trump is ending, was on shaky legal ground.
Perhaps best underscoring party tensions is the race between Feinstein and de Leon. Former Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa, who is courting more moderate and even conservative voters, won just 9 percent.
It was a jolting signal to the 84-year-old Feinstein, who has been in politics for five decades and was first elected to the Senate in 1992.