Prediction: County Supervisor Kristin Gaspar

Barry Jantz Barry Jantz 3 Comments


Each Ballot count update since the original post is at the bottom, along with the related trend. Gaspar was behind by 560 votes when I first posted after Thursday’s tally, then led by 15 on Friday evening, 218 on Saturday, 296 on Sunday, and 368 following Monday’s counts.

I was out of state last week for the election — a first for me, BTW — and although very focused on the local results on Tuesday night, hadn’t again looked in great detail until my return early this week.

Monday night I was asked on Jerome Stocks’ Facebook page to assess Encinitas Mayor Kristin Gaspar’s chances of catching County Supervisor Dave Roberts in the District 3 race. My initial response:

Currently (Monday)…

Roberts 78,928 50.65%
Gaspar 76,912 49.35%

Kristin is just under 2,000 votes behind.

Approx 444,000 ballots left to count, countywide. One-fifth of that (an assumption) for a Supe seat would be 88,800 ballots.

However, turnout in North county is greater than the South. So, say it’s as many as 100,000 ballots left to count in this race. It makes the math simple.

So, to make up 2,000 votes, she’d have to get 51 percent of 100,000,  or 51,000 votes, to Roberts’ 49,000 votes.

That assumes 100,000 ballots and no drop off (all ballots marked in that race) — unlikely.

To be safe, she’d need to be pulling 51.5 percent at least of the remaining ballots.

Ok, so what’s happened since Monday in the three days of additional ballot counting by the Registrar of Voters?

After Thursday’s Registrar update…

Roberts 91,619 50.15%
Gaspar 91,059 49.85%

There are still 314,000 ballots left to tally countywide.

Gaspar was 2,016 votes behind on Monday; she’s 560 votes behind now. So, a simple assessment would say she’s reduced her deficit by 1,456 votes in the additional 130,000 countywide ballots finalized since Monday, with nearly two and a half times that left to count. Impressive.

But, the even harder numbers are more important. How is Gaspar doing against the “safe” mark I set on Monday, getting at least 51.5 percent of the remaining ballots she would need in the district itself?

Since Monday, 26,838 additional votes have been counted in the district itself. Gaspar has gotten 14,147 of those, or 52.71 percent. She is very much achieving in excess of what she needs to surpass Roberts.

Looking at the wonk-math one other way, the 26,838 votes added in the district since Monday constitute just over 20 percent of the 130,000 countywide ballots tallied in that time.

Assuming the same twenty percent of the 314,000 ballots left to count are votes for either Gaspar or Roberts in the D-3 race, that’s 62,800 additional total votes. If Gaspar were to get only 51 percent of those (far less than the 52.71 percent trend she’s now achieving), that’s over 32,000 votes to about 30,800 for Roberts. Gaspar would win by over 600 votes.

Yet, there’s no way to know how many of the ballots left to count are votes in the district.

So, let’s really lowball it. Say it’s only a measly 10 percent of the remaining ballots are in the Supe race (however unlikely it is to be that low). That would be 31,400 votes. Only 51 percent would be 16,014 for Gaspar, to Roberts’ 15,386, and the mayor would surpass the incumbent and win by a nail-biting 68 votes.

Reality, however, suggests the ballots remaining in the district wouldn’t be fewer than 15 percent of the total, or 47,100 votes. Gaspar, achieving a more likely 51.5 percent — still far lower than the over 52 percent current trend — would mean 24,256 for her to 22,843 for Roberts, a 1,413 vote advantage resulting in a Gaspar victory by 853 votes.

If Gaspar gets a closer percentage to that of the earlier late trending ballots — higher than 52 percent — the number only goes up.

Short of game-changing recounts or a box of ballots found in the trunk of a car, Kristin Gaspar will very likely be the next County Supervisor.

Update Friday evening (Nov 18):

Gaspar now leads by 15 votes…

Gaspar 95,041 50.00%
Roberts 95,026 50.00%

The trend continues, but went even higher. Gaspar received a whopping 53.9 percent of the 7,389 added votes.

Update Saturday evening (Nov 19):

Gaspar now has a 218 vote lead…

Gaspar 97,519 50.06%
Roberts 97,301 49.94%

Gaspar garnered 52.1 percent of the 4,753 additional votes tallied today.

There are about 230,000 countywide ballots remaining, with possibly 40,000 of those in District 3.

As I noted in my original prediction above, the “safe” trend for Gaspar would need to be a minimum 51.5 percent of remaining ballots to surpass Roberts. Since she has continued to exceed 52 percent, she’s not only caught up, her lead will most likely now grow, perhaps significantly.

Update Sunday evening (Nov 20):

Gaspar increases her lead to 296 votes…

Gaspar 99,579 50.07%
Roberts 99,283 49.93%

An additional 4,042 votes were added in D3 today, with Gaspar getting just about 51 percent of those.

About 199,000 ballots countywide remain. The Registrar is focusing its attention on this District, among other close races.

Update Monday evening (Nov 21):

Gaspar’s lead increases to 368 votes…

Gaspar 102,904 50.09%
Roberts 102,536 49.91%

Gaspar received 50.5 percent of the 6,578 votes added to the mix.

About 164,000 ballots remain to tally across the county.

Before today’s count, the Registrar estimated about 31,000 remaining ballots in District 3.


Comments 3

  1. The Lincoln Club’s $200,000 spent on hard-hitting television ads against Dave Roberts in the final two weeks and the Chamber’s barrage of mail, in partnership with the rest of the business coalition, throughout October clearly paid off. With a lot of hard work and a strong effort by the party and local business groups, it looks like we’ve finally reversed the trend of our candidates experiencing a drop-off as late returns come in.

  2. Yes, Brian I agree. Dems voted earlier this election. There may have been a drop off as election day got closer because of Hillary fatigue, while Reps ended up coming home for Trump near the end. This may be a race where a down ballot seat was impacted by the presidential, doing the reverse of what is often the norm. Late and provisional ballots benefitting a Republican. Helped immensely by the efforts Brian Pepin notes above.

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