Second time around, Ro Khanna beats Honda

A longtime South Bay congressional leader is losing his seat to a newcomer in their second contest against each other in Tuesday’s general election.

Rep. Mike Honda has lost the 17th Congressional District seat he’s held for 16 years to attorney Ro Khanna, who led the race about 60 percent to 40 percent, according to unofficial results from Santa Clara and Alameda counties as of this morning.

Both men ran against each other in 2014 when Honda won the race, but Tuesday’s contest appears to have gone in Khanna’s favor.

Honda, 75, a San Jose State University graduate, previously held office at the state Assembly and Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors.

Through his role with the House Appropriations Committee, Honda helped bring $900 million in federal funds to bring BART into San Jose.

Khanna, 40, was appointed by President Barack Obama to serve as a deputy assistant secretary with the U.S. Department of Commerce between 2009 and 2011. He attended Yale Law School and is a visiting lecturer at Stanford University.

Khanna intends to bring manufacturing jobs back from overseas through high-tech alternatives, support debt-free college and create a transit system in the area of state highways 85 and 237 and U.S. Highway 101.

Honda remains under investigation by the House Office of Congressional Ethics for allegedly using taxpayer money to fund his 2014 campaign.

Honda’s campaign filed a federal lawsuit in September claiming its financial consultant’s Dropbox files were viewed by Khanna’s campaign through a former intern for the consultant who became Khanna’s campaign manager, but has since resigned.