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Sen. Barbara Boxer's Successor Unlikely To Be Republican

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) — A longtime California senator's decision not to run in 2016 will change the political makeup of California and the United States Senate, political analysts say.

William Jessup University professor Phillip Escamilla didn't waste time ruling out a Republican filling the California senator's seat.

"California is a blue right now so we can probably rule out Republican candidates," he said.

After the longtime senator dropped the bombshell that she's not seeking a fifth term in office, Escamilla sees a few current Northern California Democratic rising stars champing at the bit.

"Kamala Harris is the Attorney General right now. Gavin Newsom is the Lieutenant Governor. They are potential candidates. I see them giving this serious consideration," he said.

He also thinks there's a seasoned Democratic hopeful in Southern California who may be considering it too.

"There's Antonio Villaraigosa who's the former mayor of LA. A lot of folks believe he's thinking about a governor's race but you can't count him out," he said.

Boxer indicated in her video that she isn't riding off into the political sunset, and that she will continue fighting for her causes.

However, Escamilla believe she will also refocus on her energy on the 2016 presidential race, hoping to keep a Democrat in the White House.

"As part of her legacy she wants to have a serious role in determining who the next presidential candidate will be," he said.

But with so many Democratic choices, who will Boxer anoint as her successor.

"I think she's going to have a hand in it," he said. "I think she was very deliberate by announcing through a YouTube video with her grandson. She's sending a message that she understands the younger generation and she wants to be a part of shaping who this candidate is."

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