Posted November 3,
Richmond Mayor wins, two incumbents ousted
Contra Costa Times
Richmond Mayor Gayle McLaughlin won a second term early Wednesday
morning in a heated three-way race for the city's top post.
McLaughlin captured 6,282 votes, or 40 percent, to beat out
one of her most vocal critics, City Councilman Nat Bates. Bates
received 5,675 votes, or 36.5 percent.
Former councilman John
Ziesenhenne trailed both with 3,551 votes or 22.8 percent,
a gap that was simply too large to bridge. Bates and Ziesenhenne
have criticized the mayor, saying she has failed to embrace
the kind of business and industry the city needs to generate
jobs for locals. McLaughlin disputes those claims and said
she wants a more diverse economy that reduces the city's financial
dependence on the Chevron refinery and welcomes the growing
green technology sector.
Meanwhile in the race for three open
council seats, veteran candidate Corky Booze, incumbent Jim
Rogers and challenger Jovanka Beckles claimed the top votes
to win. Booze garnered 5,885 votes or 14.8 percent; Rogers
5,665 votes or 14.3 percent; and Beckles 5,245 votes or 13.2
percent. The trio pushed out incumbents Myrna Lopez and Maria
Viramontes. Lopez received 4,594 votes or 11.6 percent, and
Viramontes received 4,340 votes or 10.9 percent. The other
candidates -- Virginia Finlay, Rhonda Harris, Eduardo Martinez
and Harry Singh -- trailed by larger margins and lost their
first bids for elected office. Candidate Gary Bell withdrew
from the race in August, but garnered enough votes to come
in eighth. With four of seven council seats up, Tuesday's critical
election will affect how the council votes on major issues
on the horizon including the contentious casino-hotel resort
proposed at the old Point Molate Naval Fuel Depot.
additions to the council means a majority now oppose the casino
plan. Measure U, the advisory ballot measure on whether to
build a casino at Point Molate, was defeated with 9,041 no
votes or 57.5 percent. Measure V, the 5 percent marijuana tax,
passed handily with 11,657 yes votes or 77 percent.