Stern says votes are still being counted, he’s not conceding
The sparring over how to cope with fire, the future of Los Angeles County’s Public Health director, homelessness and other issues left two candidates for L.A. County 3rd District supervisor as likely opponents in November’s general election, although votes are still being counted.
State Sen. Bob Hertzberg, 67, and West Hollywood City Councilmember Lindsey Horvath, 39, were the top two vote getters as balloting unfolded in the June 7 primary election, while State Sen. Henry Stern, 40, trailed third in a field of six candidates seeking to succeed outgoing Supervisor Sheila Kuehl.
Meanwhile, Henry Stern has said he is not conceding yet: “While Election Day was Tuesday, and the first count left us trailing by about 3 percentage points, the LA County Registrar reported yesterday that over 400,000 ballots remain uncounted across the County. As a result of all this uncertainty, and the possibility that later votes could surge us to the runoff, we won’t be conceding at this point. Hope you can join me in waiting patiently, if not anxiously, as the County Clerk’s office does their work.”
The top three—all Democrats—each raised almost $1 million in the race for a district that spans more than 430 square miles from Malibu to West Hollywood, and Santa Monica to the northern reaches of the San Fernando Valley. If no candidate gets more than 50% of the vote after the tally is made final, the top will two face off in November.
Leading Horvath by 10 points, Hertzberg told The Acorn, “The size of the district is quite challenging. I like to do hand-painted signs and go neighbor to neighbor. Even before I ran, I drove the entire district to just touch base. From Venice to West Hollywood, I’m pretty comfortable with the entire district. I know the community very well.”
The rest of the field, none of whom has ever held office, were business owner Jeffi Girgenti, 56; dog exerciser Craig Brill, 56; and business owner Roxanne Hoge, 56. Making this race one of the most-watched and perhaps tightest was the once-every-decade redrawing of boundaries, meaning the District 3 Kuehl is leaving is not the one her successor will be representing. It’s actually a bit more conservative, a fact that irked Kuehl, who early on threw her support behind Horvath, a proven public servant who also gained the endorsement of Planned Parenthood and the Los Angeles Times.
A strange thing happened on the way to Election Day, however. Horvath’s campaign website makes scant mention of West Hollywood, and doesn’t specifically state anywhere that she is a council member there, let alone a two-time mayor.
Instead, the biography page states, “In 2009, she was appointed to serve as a City Council member following the death of a long-serving councilman. She returned to the council in 2015, was sworn in as mayor in April 2015 and again in May 2020. Lindsey led the city’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.”
Missing is any acknowledgment that the city is West Hollywood, perhaps a conscious effort by the Horvath campaign to attract some of the new conservative voters in the northern part of the 3rd District.
Stern, a state senator in the local 27th District, ran on a six-year history of tackling in Sacramento some of the biggest challenges facing the Board of Supervisors: responding to crises that include homelessness, health care and hate, to COVID, crime and climate disasters.
Stern highlighted pushing for legislation “focused on the conversion of unused public and commercial buildings for affordable housing.”
In the outskirts, say, hilly western Los Angeles County, he’s focused on “resisting limits on local control over risky developments in open space and wildfire zones.”
Hertzberg’s goal: “To clean up the mess in L.A. County.”
Homelessness, crime, housing and creating jobs are his campaign priorities. If he should win and voters don’t like what they see, Hertzberg said, there’s an easy fix: “Throw me out of office.”
Stern, meanwhile remains optimistic about staying alive in the race: “We’re still waiting for all the votes to be counted,” he said. “We expected a tight election and we sure have one.”
Reprinted from theacorn.com. Author Scott Steepleton