Measure A and Democrats win in local races
By Kevin Uhrich 06/07/2012
There were a few surprises for local voters in Tuesday’s California Primary Election balloting.
Because this was an open primary, the two top vote getters in legislative races will face each other again in the Nov. 6 General Election.
On the question of whether the Pasadena Unified School District should be divided into seven separate districts in order to increase voting and election opportunities for minorities, Measure A won with 12,597 votes, or 54.81 percent, according to semi-final official election returns posted early Wednesday morning by the LA County Department of Registrar-Recorder/County Clerk.
At the state level, it was expected voters would go for a measure to revise legislative term limits, and state Proposition 28 coasted to an easy win, taking more than 61 percent of the 701,756 ballots cast statewide. Now, instead of being allowed to stay in power 14 years, which requires politicians to jump from one house to another in order to stay in office, lawmakers will now have 12 years, which will allow them to serve a shorter time overall but retain their original seats for longer periods.
But what developed into a tight race that pitted Big Tobacco against the state’s scientific, anti-smoking and cancer care communities, Proposition 29, which would impose a $1 tax on a pack of cigarettes for cancer research, went down to defeat, with 362,079 people, or 50.74 percent, voting no.
In the race for the newly created 41st Assembly District seat, longtime Pasadena City Councilman Chris Holden, a Democrat, came out on top of a field of five candidates with 15,421 or 33.70 percent of the votes cast. Coming in second was Republican Donna Lowe of Claremont, who won 9,472 votes and will face off with Holden again in November. What was somewhat unexpected, however, was Democrat Victoria Rusnak, who raised and spent more than any candidate in the race, coming in last with 13.71 percent, or 6,275 votes.
Democrats in other local races also sailed to easy wins in their respective races. In the state 25th Senate District race, incumbent Carol Liu won easily in a three-way race against Republican Gilbert V. Gonzales and Democrat Ameenah Fuller. Liu took 53.42 percent of the votes cast, with Gonzales coming in second with 37,529 votes, or 41.43 percent.
In Congress, incumbent Adam Schiff, who took 34,528, or 59.54 percent of the votes cast in the race for the newly created 28th Congressional District seat, will face second-place finisher Republican Phil Jennerjahn, who garnered 17 percent of the votes cast.
And in the new 27th Congressional District, which includes Pasadena, Democratic incumbent Judy Chu won 60.23 percent of votes cast, with Republican Jack Orswell coming in second with 22.79 percent of the more than 64,000 ballots cast.