Update Tuesday 12/2, 4:45 pm…
It’s official from the Registrar of Voters. John McCann wins in Chula Vista by two votes. In essence, nothing changed from last Wednesday, as anticipated (see prior update below).
I’m not going out on a limb saying that Steve Padilla or one of his supporters — labor or the Democratic Party, for instance — will now likely start a recount process.
The results have to be official before a recount is requested. This is now official.
In election parlance, official and done are not always one in the same.
More will undoubtedly follow.
The last recount of real significance in the county followed the June 2010 primary election for State Senate between Juan Vargas and Mary Salas. After weeks of back and forth in the vote counting, the official results had Vargas up by 22 votes out of several thousand cast.
Things were a bit complex, with the 40th Senate District overlapping portions of three counties, Imperial, Riverside and San Diego.
Salas started a recount process, but seeing no change in the results, she conceded when the San Diego Registrar’s office had re-checked about half of the county’s ballots.
Salas, of course, just won the mayor’s spot in Chula Vista. Vargas ultimately left the Senate to take Bob Filner’s long-held spot in Congress.
Update Wednesday 11/26, 5 pm…
John McCann supporters are tonight claiming a two-vote margin of victory in the tight race for Chula Vista City Council.
Today’s reconciliation process for mail ballots in Chula Vista moved the race from a four vote margin between the candidates to a mere two vote lead for McCann over Steve Padilla.
The verification of ballots subtracted three votes from McCann’s total and one vote from that of Padilla, leaving this tally:
JOHN McCANN 18,448 50.00%
STEVE PADILLA 18,446 50.00%
The McCann campaign says that Registrar of Voters staff noted there are no more ballots to be counted, verified or audited in the race. Registrar Michael Vu said earlier today his office was trying to wrap up the Chula Vista count before the holiday weekend.
Pending the request for a recount by Padilla or his supporters, this appears to be a final count from the Registrar’s office, which must certify the results by December 2. A citywide recount is estimated at $50,000, to be paid by the requesting party.
Original post – Wednesday morning…
John McCann now leads Steve Padilla by a “huge” four vote margin in the Chula Vista City Council election, following yesterday’s reconciliation process at the Registrar of Voters.
The race was previously tied, at 18,450 votes apiece for Republican McCann and Democrat Padilla. Yesterday’s verification process added one vote to McCann’s total, while subtracting three votes from Padilla’s numbers. The tally currently stands at:
JOHN McCANN 18,451 50.01%
STEVE PADILLA 18,447 49.99%
As noted prior, the reconciliation includes the Registrar auditing each precinct to verify ballots were counted correctly. The vote count can change by a few votes during this process.
According to those watching the action, Registrar staff reconciled the entire city for ballots cast at polling places, including provisional ballots. Discrepancies were noted in some precincts, in which the number of votes reported as cast by precinct workers didn’t match the vote totals in those precincts. The ballots were then re-checked in seven precincts. This resulted in McCann gaining one vote and Padilla losing three, a net gain of four for McCann.
Padilla’s three subtracted votes had been double counted during initial vote canvas, while McCann’s one vote was previously under counted.
Due to the closeness of the race, the Registrar today is also finalizing a verification that all mail ballots were counted correctly.