Candidate in bid for San Diego mayor concedes
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.