Primary Turnout Dismal: 13.9% in LA County

By EGP Staff Report

Los Angeles County voters avoided polling places in droves Tuesday, despite several high profile and hotly contested races on the June 3 Primary Ballot.

According to unofficial numbers released Wednesday by the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk, only 13.9% of the county’s nearly 5 million registered voters cast ballots Tuesday, which for the first time in decades had no incumbents vying for two county supervisor seats and L.A. County Sheriff.

Also on the ballot, were statewide races for California governor, lieutenant governor, controller, treasurer, insurance commission, superintendent of schools, secretary of state, as wells as state assembly and senate seats, two propositions and several congressional seats.

Vote totals released midday Wednesday did not include the roughly 46,000 provisional ballots that still needed to be verified and another 70,000 to 75,000 vote-by-mail ballots still outstanding.

California’s new top two voting system requires a runoff of the two highest vote getters in state and congressional races regardless of party affiliation.

At the state level, Gov. Jerry Brown will face Republican challenger and former Treasury Dept. official Neel Kashkar in the November General Election. Brown, who is seeking an unprecedented fourth term, led the field of 15 candidates with 54.5 percent of the vote, according to the Secretary of State’s semi-official results released Wednesday. Kashkari received 19 percent and Assemblyman Tim Donnelly 14.8 percent.

California’s top two system may have opened the door for Republicans who currently hold no statewide offices. In the heated race for state controller, former Assembly Speaker John Perez D-Los Angeles on Wednesday evening was just one tenth of a percentage point ahead of Republican candidate David Evans for the second spot on the ballot behind Republican Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin, the top finisher.

In the race for secretary of state, Democrat Alex Padilla will face of against Republican Pete Peterson, with less than a percentage point separating the candidates.

Both state ballot measures, Proposition 41 to fund affordable housing for veterans, and Proposition 42, requiring the state to reimburse local municipalities for complying with open records mandates, were both approved by over 60%

At the county level, former Labor Secretary Hilda Solis did what was expected, easily winning the race to replace long-time first district Supervisor Gloria Molina with more than 70% of the vote.

In the race for LA County Sheriff, an “outsider” to the department fell just short of winning the race outright. Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell received 49.2% of the vote and will take on embroiled former Undersheriff Paul Tanaka who received 14.7% of the vote, earning him a spot in the November runoff.

 

Local Races

Incumbents in local congressional, state senate and assembly district races for the most part faced little competition.

Congresswomen Lucille Roybal-Allard (District 40-Commerce/East Los Angeles), Judy Chu (District 27-Monterey Park), Linda T. Sanchez (District 38-Montebello) and Congressman Xavier Becerra (District 34-Los Angeles) each received well over 50% of the votes cast on Tuesday, but due to California’s voter approved top two system, they will still be on the November ballot.

State Senators Ed Hernandez (District 22-East Los Angeles/Monterey Park) and Kevin De Leon (District 24- Los Angeles/Vernon) also received more than half of the votes. Hernandez ran unopposed.

In the new recently redrawn 32nd District, (Montebello/Commerce) however, former Assemblyman Tony Mendoza and Downey Councilman Mario A. Guerra will face off in the November runoff. Guerra received 43.8% (21,249) of the votes and Mendoza received 32% (15,561).

State Assemblymembers Ed Chau (District 49-Monterey Park), Jimmy Gomez (District 51-East Los Angeles) and Cristina Garcia (District 58 – Montebello/Bell Gardens) all ran unopposed.

Miguel Santiago, the district director for Assemblyman John Perez (District 53-Boyle Heights/ Vernon) made it to the runoff to replace his boss with 56.3% of the vote, and will face Sandra Mendoza who came in second with just under 24%. .

Monterey Park voters approved a measure to allow the rezoning of a property previously zoned for commercial use, opening the door for a the construction of single family homes at the property located at 2015 Potrero Grande Dr.

The measure was passed 52.5% in favor to 47.6% opposed.

Los Angeles County voters avoided polling places in droves Tuesday, despite several high profile and hotly contested races on the June 3 Primary Ballot.

According to unofficial numbers released Wednesday by the Los Angeles County Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk, only 13.9% of the county’s nearly 5 million registered voters cast ballots Tuesday, which for the first time in decades had no incumbents vying for two county supervisor seats and L.A. County Sheriff.

Also on the ballot, were statewide races for California governor, lieutenant governor, controller, treasurer, insurance commission, superintendent of schools, secretary of state, as wells as state assembly and senate seats, two propositions and several congressional seats.

Vote totals released midday Wednesday did not include the roughly 46,000 provisional ballots that still needed to be verified and another 70,000 to 75,000 vote-by-mail ballots still outstanding.

California’s new top two voting system requires a runoff of the two highest vote getters in state and congressional races regardless of party affiliation.

At the state level, Gov. Jerry Brown will face Republican challenger and former Treasury Dept. official Neel Kashkar in the November General Election. Brown, who is seeking an unprecedented fourth term, led the field of 15 candidates with 54.5 percent of the vote, according to the Secretary of State’s semi-official results released Wednesday. Kashkari received 19 percent and Assemblyman Tim Donnelly 14.8 percent.

California’s top two system may have opened the door for Republicans who currently hold no statewide offices. In the heated race for state controller, former Assembly Speaker John Perez D-Los Angeles on Wednesday evening was just one tenth of a percentage point ahead of Republican candidate David Evans for the second spot on the ballot behind Republican Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin, the top finisher.

In the race for secretary of state, Democrat Alex Padilla will face of against Republican Pete Peterson, with less than a percentage point separating the candidates.

Both state ballot measures, Proposition 41 to fund affordable housing for veterans, and Proposition 42, requiring the state to reimburse local municipalities for complying with open records mandates, were both approved by over 60%

At the county level, former Labor Secretary Hilda Solis did what was expected, easily winning the race to replace long-time first district Supervisor Gloria Molina with more than 70% of the vote.

In the race for LA County Sheriff, an “outsider” to the department fell just short of winning the race outright. Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell received 49.2% of the vote and will take on embroiled former Undersheriff Paul Tanaka who received 14.7% of the vote, earning him a spot in the November runoff.

 

Local Races

Incumbents in local congressional, state senate and assembly district races for the most part faced little competition.

Congresswomen Lucille Roybal-Allard (District 40-Commerce/East Los Angeles), Judy Chu (District 27-Monterey Park), Linda T. Sanchez (District 38-Montebello) and Congressman Xavier Becerra (District 34-Los Angeles) each received well over 50% of the votes cast on Tuesday, but due to California’s voter approved top two system, they will still be on the November ballot.

State Senators Ed Hernandez (District 22-East Los Angeles/Monterey Park) and Kevin De Leon (District 24- Los Angeles/Vernon) also received more than half of the votes. Hernandez ran unopposed.

In the new recently redrawn 32nd District, (Montebello/Commerce) however, former Assemblyman Tony Mendoza and Downey Councilman Mario A. Guerra will face off in the November runoff. Guerra received 43.8% (21,249) of the votes and Mendoza received 32% (15,561).

State Assemblymembers Ed Chau (District 49-Monterey Park), Jimmy Gomez (District 51-East Los Angeles) and Cristina Garcia (District 58 – Montebello/Bell Gardens) all ran unopposed.

Miguel Santiago, the district director for Assemblyman John Perez (District 53-Boyle Heights/ Vernon) made it to the runoff to replace his boss with 56.3% of the vote, and will face Sandra Mendoza who came in second with just under 24%. .

Monterey Park voters approved a measure to allow the rezoning of a property previously zoned for commercial use, opening the door for a the construction of single family homes at the property located at 2015 Potrero Grande Dr.

The measure was passed 52.5% in favor to 47.6% opposed.

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June 5, 2014  Copyright © 2012 Eastern Group Publications, Inc.

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