Washington — Two California Republicans with ties to the plastics industry held onto their seats in the U.S. House, helping the GOP maintain control over both chambers of the legislative branch.
Denham Plastics LLC co-founder Rep. Jeff Denham defeated challenger Michael Eggman by a comfortable margin, 52 to 47 percent and nearly 7,500 votes between them.
After 16 years in the Air Force, Denham partnered with Mike Hutchings to start Denham Plastics LLC, a Salinas, Calif.-based recycler and reseller of agricultural harvesting containers such as bulk bins, pallets and totes that has bounced back since a devastating fire in 2012.
Denham has also been in politics since 2002, first as a state assemblyman and then in the U.S. House since 2010. His 2016 race against Engman turned surprisingly tight, with Denham taking heat for his support of then-GOP presidential candidate Donald Trump before ultimately prevailing at the polls.
Rep. Darrell Issa, the former CEO of a vehicle security system and car audio equipment company that injection molded its own components, also keeps his seat after surprisingly tough race. Issa won his last few races handily, having represented California's 49th Congressional District for the last 15 years. Issa beat Doug Applegate, a retired Marine colonel who served in Iraq, 51 to 48 percent by the morning, after being down in the count earlier on election night.