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California Democratic Party Snubs Feinstein and supports Kevin De León

LOS ANGELES – Six weeks after winning an overwhelming victory among the top voters in California, Senator Dianne Feinstein suffered an embarrassing backstroke Saturday night when the state democratic party officially approved his rival for elections in November.

Kevin de León, the Democratic leader of California's state council, won the support of the party leadership despite an intervention by Ms Feinstein to persuade the party not to offer an approval.

The voice of Mr. de Leon reflected the emergence of younger liberal activists in California Democratic leadership, some of whom consider Ms Feinstein to be moderate compared to the intensively progressive voices that come up through party leaders. These activists tend to be younger and more inclined than the state at large.

Mr. León, 51, remains a long-term candidate in his two-way game against 85-year-old Mrs Feinstein in November; The two Democrats face each other, without the Republican in the mix, after winning in the state's so-called "top two" open primary last month. Nevertheless, the vote for Mr de Leon was a reminder of Ms Feinstein's lumpy support among Liberal Democrats, as the party is debating how to take on President Trump in the fall in the middle of the election.

In a tweet following the approval, Mr. de Leon wrote: "Accepting so many leaders and activists from the @ CA_Dem party is not just a glory and privilege. Today's vote is a cleareyed rejection of politics as usual in Washington, DC "

Ms. Feinstein defeated Mr De León in California Senate last month and received 44.2 percent of the vote to 11.5 percent. She carries all state counties.

Jeff Millman, Ms. Feinstein's campaign manager, expressed confidence on Saturday night that "a large majority of California Democrats" will vote for re-election in the fall. In an email, he noted that 217 Democratic Party delegates had voted to support Mr de León, while Ms Feinstein received more than two million votes in California.

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