Anthony Woods, the Iraq war veteran who launched an energetic and historic campaign to become the first openly gay African-American elected to Congress, lost his bid to represent the 10th congressional district in the East Bay Area near San Francisco on Tuesday, finishing fourth among Democratic candidates with 8% of the vote.
California lieutenant governor John Garamendi, a front-runner throughout the race, captured the Democratic nomination, according to CQ Politics:
"Garamendi had 26% of the total vote. State senator Mark DeSaulnier, his closest Democratic competitor, took 18%. State assemblywoman Joan Buchanan had 12%, while Iraq war veteran Anthony Woods had 8%."
Garamendi, who failed to win a majority in the special election primary among 14 candidates from different parties, will face a Republican and minor party opponents in a runoff election November 3.
The candidates competed to replace former congresswoman Ellen Tauscher, who took a position with the State Department.
Woods, a 29-year-old native of Fairfield, Calif., energized liberal groups throughout the campaign. The West Point graduate completed two combat tours in Iraq, for which he was awarded the Bronze Star and the Army Commendation Medal, and later earned his master's degree from Harvard's Kennedy School of Government. He was honorably discharged from the military after publicly coming out during his time at Harvard.