Despite most open primary, most November contests will feature a Democrat vs. a Republican candidate
Races for Controller, State Superintendent, CD 15 and AD 16 still too close to call
Good morning San Leandro! Happy post-election day!
And what a stressful day it must be for many candidates in California! The mailed & poll-day ballots have been counted, but many races are close enough that the absentee ballots turned in at the polls and provisional ballots may very well make the difference.
This election, I think, has been characterized by voter apathy and lack of knowledge about candidates, so name recognition was key. Nothing else can explain that indicted-arms-dealer Leland Yee would come out third in the Secretary of State race with almost 300,000 votes!
Worth noting is that despite the open primary, most of the November elections in Alameda county are posed to be between a Democrat and a Republican. It would seem that Republicans will continue to vote for Republican candidates, rather than a more moderate Democrat, even when their candidate has no prayer of winning in November.
Results from the more certain contested races:
– Karen Monroe and Helen K. Foster will be competing against each other for Alameda County Superintendent of Schools. That means that we get our Chinese-flag-waving Ursula Reed in the City Council for 2 more years. I’m sure she’ll be lovely. Personally, I felt Foster had a good chance to win 2nd place based on her name alone, but she also was a smart campaigner, putting up signs and using internet ads to further that name recognition.
– With 3330 votes (so far), Barbara Halliday is the new Mayor-elect of Hayward. Look at that number again. Hayward has a population of almost 150,000 people and just 3330 voted for its new Mayor. As a comparison, San Leandro Mayor Cassidy was elected in 2010 with over 10K votes in a city with almost half its population. Hayward needs to change its elections to November and consider adopting ranked-choice voting.
– As predicted by polls, Ro Khanna will be facing Mike Honda for the Congressional District 17 seat in November. The 20+ point spread between the candidates must be making Khanna nervous. He’ll need to decide whether to continue to play nice, as he builds support for a 2016 rematch or whether to take the gloves off and make the case why voters shouldn’t want to vote for Honda.
– It will be Bob Wieckowski vs. Republican Peter Kuo for Senate District 10. Mary Hayashi is left on the dust. Will she disappear quietly or will she use whatever money & fundraising power she has to go after her perceived enemies? We’ll just have to wait and see
– In Assembly District 15 (north Oakland to Pinole), it’ll be former Obama administration official & Alameda County Democratic Party member Elizabeth Echols vs. former Richmond Councilmember Tony Thurmond. With 6 other candidates out of the way, there will finally be a chance to distinguish between the two Democratic candidates. This, by the way, only one of two Alameda County races where two candidates from the same party will face each other in November.
– In Assembly District 25 (Fremont & parts of Santa Clara county), San Jose Councilmember Kansen Chu, a Democrat, will face Republican Bob Brunton. My endorsed candidate Teresa Cox came third, despite being heavily outspent by fourth-placer Armando Gomez (though those numbers could still change).
– Governor Jerry Brown will face Republican Neel Kashkari. A blow to the tea party, but also Democrats who hoped a Donnelly win would depress Republican turnout in November. My bet is that it wouldn’t make a difference.
– Alex Padilla will face Republican Pete Peterson for Secretary of State.
NOT DECIDED YET
– It looks like the battle for Assembly District 16 (tri-valley) will be between Republican Catharine Baker and Dublin Mayor Tim Sbranti, a Democrat, come November. But I’m not calling it just yet because Steve Glazer was ahead of Sbranti for a while last night, and it’s hard to know how many ballots are left to count or how these will break.
-Incumbent State Superintendent of Public Instruction Tom Torlakson, a Democrat, didn’t reach the 50% of the vote he needed to avoid a November runoff. His likely opponent will be Democrat Marshall Tuck, in what would be the only Democrat vs. Democrat race at the state level. Republican Lydia Gutiérrez may still catch up when all votes are counted, however.