Can­di­date in bid for San Diego mayor con­cedes

The Washington Times Daily - - Nation - BY EL­LIOT SPAGAT

SAN DIEGO | A tech­nol­ogy in­dus­try ex­ec­u­tive and for­mer state as­sem­bly­man con­ceded de­feat Wed­nes­day in the race for San Diego mayor and en­dorsed a fel­low Demo­crat and city coun­cil­man.

Nathan Fletcher said he supports David Alvarez in a runoff against Kevin Faulconer, a Repub­li­can city coun­cil­man.

The elec­tion was held to re­place Bob Fil­ner, who re­signed in late Au­gust amid ac­cu­sa­tions of sex­ual ha­rass­ment.

Mr. Fletcher was trail­ing Mr. Alvarez by 1 per­cent­age point for sec­ond place with tens of thou­sands of bal­lots re­main­ing to be counted.

Mr. Faulconer eas­ily topped the field of 11 can­di­dates with 46 per­cent of the votes cast in Tues­day’s vote but fell short of the ma­jor­ity needed to avoid a runoff. His strong show­ing gives Repub­li­cans a chance to re­cap­ture an of­fice they held for much of the past four decades.

Mr. Alvarez, rid­ing sup­port from or­ga­nized la­bor and an ef­fort to turn out vot­ers in heav­ily His­panic neigh­bor­hoods, fol­lowed with 25.6 per­cent. Mr. Fletcher, an ex­ec­u­tive at wire­less tech­nol­ogy ti­tan Qual­comm Inc. and for­mer state as­sem­bly­man, was trail­ing with 24.3 per­cent.

With no one win­ning a ma­jor­ity, the top two fin­ish­ers ad­vance to a runoff. About 34,500 mail-in and pro­vi­sional bal­lots re­mained to be counted out of nearly 240,000 votes cast. Mr. Fletcher would have to get a far larger per­cent­age of the re­main­ing bal­lots to over­come the deficit, an un­re­al­is­tic pos­si­bil­ity.

Mr. Faulconer, a for­mer pub­lic re­la­tions ex­ec­u­tive, must ap­peal well be­yond his Repub­li­can base to pre­vail in a runoff, which will likely be sched­uled in Fe­bru­ary. Democrats hold a 13-point ad­van­tage over Repub­li­cans in voter reg­is­tra­tion, and Pres­i­dent Obama trounced Mitt Rom­ney by 25 points among city vot­ers in last year’s pres­i­den­tial elec­tion.

“It’s not about be­ing a Repub­li­can or Demo­crat. It’s about com­ing to­gether to put San Diego first,” Mr. Faulconer told sup­port­ers.

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