The Los Angeles County Assessor’s race was being led by current West Hollywood City Councilman Jeffrey Prang over Deputy City Attorney John Morris as of Wednesday evening, but both candidates declared the race too close to call until all provisional and absentee ballots are counted.
Prang led with 50.52 percent of the vote versus Morris’ 49.48 percent in a race to replace John Noguez, who is currently involved with criminal charges related to his time in office.
“We have over a 9,000-vote lead, but it’s pretty close,” Prang said Wednesday morning. “The point spread difference between the two of us remained relatively close throughout the evening, and there are many reasons to believe that the late ballots will continue that trend. At the moment, we’re pleased to be in the lead … It’s best to wait for all the ballots to be counted before you start taking a victory lap.”
Some officials have indicated that there might be as many as 100,000 provisional ballots and absentee ballots yet to be counted.
“I’m encouraged and looking forward to seeing what the final vote is,” Morris said. “It’s premature to make any decisions because I want to make sure all the votes are counted that have been cast.”
In the race to replace outgoing 3rd District County Supervisor Zev Yaroslavsky, who is retiring after serving approximately 20 years, it was former state senator Sheila Kuehl who came out on top versus former Santa Monica Mayor Bobby Shriver.
“I want to thank all of my supporters for their unwavering faith and encouragement over the course of this campaign,” Kuehl said. “I am honored to have been chosen by the voters of the third district to represent them on the board of supervisors. I look forward to beginning the important work of tackling the many issues facing the county.”
Kuehl received 52.78 percent of the vote versus 47.22 percent for Shriver.
She served on the California Senate for eight years and the California Assembly for six years — she was termed-out in 2008. She is the founding director of the Public Policy Institute at Santa Monica College.
“Sheila was gracious in victory,” Shriver said. “We had a good conversation about our challenging and spirited campaign. After twenty-five debates, I know Sheila will bring strength and conviction to her service on the board of supervisors.
“This campaign has been a great experience for my family and me. I particularly value our new friendships and the diverse communities I have come to know. Los Angeles County has amazing people, resources, and challenges. My profound gratitude to everyone who believed in and supported me in this endeavor.”
U.S. Congressional District 33 is also seeing a retirement, with current Congressman Henry Waxman bidding farewell after 40 years of public service. State Sen. Ted Lieu (D-Torrance) won the election to take his place defeating Republican criminal gang prosecutor Elan Carr with 58.37 percent of the vote versus 41.63 percent.
Lieu served in the U.S. Air Force before serving for three years on the Torrance City Council and then being elected to the California State Senate in 2011.
“I’m grateful and humbled to have received the strong support of the voters throughout our beautiful district,” he said on Wednesday. “I look forward to the opportunity to serve our area in congress. Yesterday’s election was a difficult one for Democrats across the country, and it’s more critical than ever that members of congress stand up for our core values, including defending a woman’s right to choose and protecting Social Security and Medicare. I’m going to Washington to take on these fights. I’ve been particularly honored during this campaign to have the support and guidance of Congressman Henry Waxman, whose legacy is his record of extraordinary service and accomplishment for this district and our country. I also want to thank my opponent Elan Carr, who ran a spirited campaign and graciously called me last night to concede this race.”
Additionally, Governor Jerry Brown (66.28 percent) won a fourth term by defeating Republican challenger Neel Kashkari (33.72 percent). Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell (74.83 percent) defeated former Undersheriff Paul Tanaka (25.17 percent) to become the next sheriff of Los Angeles County.
Voters liked (62.04 percent) the only county ballot measure, Proposition P, but the measure ultimately needed 66 percent to pass. It would have been an extension of a property tax that has been in place since 1992 and it was alternatively called the Safe Neighborhood Parks, Gang Prevention, Youth/Senior Recreation, Beaches and Wildlife Protection Measure. The measure would have imposed an annual, flat, $23 per parcel tax.
California Proposition 1 was approved (69.88 percent), and it will create $7.1 billion in general obligation bonds and trigger the sale of another $425 million in unsold, previously approved bonds, to pay for water projects across the state.
Voters approved California Proposition 2 (69.25 percent), which will create a state budget rainy day fund.
State voters rejected two health measures — Proposition 45 (56.45 percent “no”) for a state elected insurance commissioner and Proposition 46 (63.41 percent “no”) that included new malpractice awards.
Certain nonviolent drug and property crimes will be reclassified from felonies to misdemeanors after the passage of California Proposition 47 (63.36 percent).
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