In a low turnout election last night to fill the seat left vacant by former Rep. Ellen Tauscher (and current Obama administration official) California Lt. Governor John Garamendi was the top finisher with 26% of the vote. Given the heavy Democratic tilt of the district (about 2-1) it is likely he will win the November runoff.
This would leave a vacancy in the office of Lt. Governor and bring about some interesting, if probably meaningless, political gamesmanship. Under California law Governor Arnold gets to nominate a successor but that nominee must be confirmed by both houses of the heavily Democratic state legislature. Since 2010 is an election year the new Lt. Governor would only serve for about a year.
Presumably Arnold would nominate a Republican to serve and equally likely is the fact that the legislature would not want to confirm a strong contender for re-election in 2010. So the odds favor a seat warmer being nominated to fill out the term. At the same time the Guv could decide to try and get someone solid in there to continue some level of Republican representation at the statewide level.
We will watch and wait.
On another note, Curt Schilling is reportedly considering a run for the Kennedy Senate seat. Schilling has campaigned for Republicans before and is a registered Independent.