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March 5 Early Election Results for Santa Clara, Sunnyvale

An effort to change Santa Clara’s City charter from an elected city clerk and police chief to appointed ones appears to have failed. According to the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters, both Measures A and B on the March 5 ballot have failed.

Measure A – Santa Clara’s City Clerk Will Remain Elected

At last update, around 10:20 p.m. on Tuesday night, 67.24% of voters believed that the City Charter should remain the same, with the City Clerk as an elected position.

32.76% of voters voted to change the City Charter to an elected City Clerk.

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9,923 people voted on Measure A in the election.

Measure B – Santa Clara’s Police Chief Will Remain Elected

The results for Measure B were only slightly different. 72.34% of voters voted against changing the city charter to an appointed police chief. Meanwhile, 27.66% of voters voted for the charter change.

10,045 people citywide voted on the issue.

Voter Turnout for Election in Santa Clara

Voter turnout for this election was low. According to the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters, only about 17.80% of registered voters in the County voted.

Looking at the votes cast in the City of Santa Clara, only a handful of the City’s precincts saw a voter turnout between 20 and 30%. Turnout in a majority of the precincts was between 10 and 20%. A couple of precincts saw fewer than 10% of ballots returned.

U.S. Representative for District 17

In other races, incumbent Ro Khanna appears poised to face off with Republican Anita Chen in the November general election. Khanna received 61.14% of the vote to Chen’s 28.88%.

State Assembly District 26

As of 10:20 p.m. on Tuesday night, the race for who will represent District 26 at the State Assembly has changed. The District, which includes Santa Clara and Sunnyvale, looks to be a battle between Patrick Ahrens and a yet-to-be-named opponent.

Ahrens, a Sunnyvale resident who served on the Foothill-De Anza Community College District Board, still leads the group with 34.64% of the vote.

However, Tara Sreekrishnan, who was in second place after early returns, has fallen behind. The former member of the Santa Clara County Board of Education representing Trustee Area 2 is now in third place with 24.62% of the vote.

Sophie Yan Song, a CPA, has leapfrogged Sreekrishnan and now has a slight edge with 25.11% of the vote.

Since no one received more than 50% of the vote, Ahrens will face either Song or Sreekrishnan in the November general election.

At last check, Sunnyvale City Council Member Omar Din was in fourth place with 10.67% of the vote.

The candidates are running to replace Evan Low, who previously represented District 26 but decided to run to replace Anna Eshoo as the Representative for District 16 in Congress.

Otto Lee Wins District 3 in Uncontested Election

Otto Lee won an uncontested race to keep his seat on the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors representing District 3. Lee, who represents parts of Sunnyvale, Milpitas and Northern San Jose, is the former mayor of Sunnyvale.

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10 Comments
  1. Fred 2 months ago
    Reply

    Very disappointing that the City measures failed. I guess we deserve what we vote for.

    I think the lopsided vote highlights on part the difference between at-large counts, and those based on districts. Before districts the white power structure was easily maintained, with districts not so much

  2. Dan 2 months ago
    Reply

    I am not white and not part of some Boogieman Power Structure. Having the City Clerk and Police Chief accountable to the people prevents a Clerk and Police Chief from being influenced by a City Managet who is a newbie to the city…..

  3. Dan 2 months ago
    Reply

    I am not white and not part of some Boogieman Power Structure. Having the City Clerk and Police Chief accountable to the people prevents a Clerk and Police Chief from being influenced by a City Managet who is a newbie to the city…..Aka a puppet

  4. Bob Nathan 1 month ago
    Reply

    It is another way of the voters telling that I do not trust the City Council members supporting this ballot and the 49ers.

    A simple question for Fred – Who has to pay for the security for the Levi Stadium during 49ersa games ? The 49ers or the residents of Santa Clara

    • fred 1 month ago
      Reply

      Bob Nathan, the reason Santa Clara got such a bad deal on the Stadium/49ers is that people like our current Mayor 1) promoted the 49ers 2) saddled us with debt on the Stadium 3) got out-negotiated on the contract with the 49ers. Those of us against Measure J warned about all this.

      Now that the 49ers are here, we have to make the best of a bad situation. Gillmor’s current position is entirely cynical–she realized she’d screwed up in bringing the 49ers here and decided it would be politically expedient to recast herself as a staunch opponent. Her strident positions are political theater, not a sincere effort to do what’s best for the City.

  5. Good citizen 1 month ago
    Reply

    Wait, Otto Lee ran unopposed and won? According to the proponents of Measures A and B, that is a travesty! Democracy is dead! Where is CSC and where is Suds claiming that the Supervisor race was all a big waste of money and that voters really didn’t have a choice? Where is their outrage that this is proof that it really was undemocratic and Otto Lee was hand-picked in some backroom deal to run unopposed?

    Yeah it sounds dumb because the argument IS dumb. And voters overwhelmingly agreed. Even if you look at Measure A which had NO money spent on the opposition and DID have money spent by its supporters it failed pretty miserably.

    And it was refreshing to see how voters who are engaged and educated vote and represent the best interests of the city (primary elections only bring out those who are engaged and educated – which is why the turnouts are low). It shows how voters vote when the 49ers don’t try to tip the scales and pull the cover over voters’ eyes with glossy flyers and TV, YouTube and Facebook ads. Just remember this in November and remind your friends and neighbors.

    The problem with people like CSC (Michelle Ryan) and Christine Kolterman and Karen Hardy and Suds Jain is their smugness in thinking they know better than all the rest of Santa Clara voters. They’d accept the role of Santa Clara dictator in a heartbeat if they could get it taken away from Lisa – but detest it when Lisa holds the same role. Traditional hypocrite behavior.

    At least they didn’t walk away with a complete loss. Karen Hardy won the most votes by a large margin for a seat on the Republican Party’s Central Committee. Congratulations!

    • Buchser Alum 1 month ago
      Reply

      Good Citizen,
      .
      You are trying to argue a false equivalence.
      .
      A county board of supervisors election having one candidate run unopposed is an outlier.
      .
      A Santa Clara election for police chief having one candidate run unopposed has become the norm.
      .
      But thank you for informing me that Karen Hardy has been seeking to become a Republican party official. I have been a lifelong registered Democrat and was not aware of this.

  6. JMC 1 month ago
    Reply

    My No vote was a referendum on my confidence in City leadership. I trust more in the voters (even though not throughly informed) than anyone hired by the City Council. When the Council members start acting for the well-being of the residents and not for their own political and personal interests, I’ll vote for more power for them. I am tired of all of the accusations and in-fighting.

  7. Buchser Alum 1 month ago
    Reply

    Can someone remind us all of why the city council majority pushed so hard for measures A and B to be on this March primary ballot? Why did they rush the process of having a city charter amendment voted on in a low turnout election?
    .
    Why try to have a city charter amendment voted on by a smaller percentage of Santa Clara voters as a matter of respect for the seriousness of altering our city charter?
    .
    And why do this unless they wanted to doom it to failure? Everyone knows that lower turnout elections have a higher ratio of older and more conservative voters.
    .
    Measures A and B probably would have failed in November but they failed by an even worse margin by being rushed onto this March ballot.
    .
    It makes me wonder how else our city may be shortchanged by having such lack of common sense governing us.

  8. W.S. 1 month ago
    Reply

    It never ceases to amaze me how many people keep blaming the 49ers for various issues. Effectively those who say this are telling the rest of us that we are incapable of making a decision on our own. They consider the voters in Santa Clara to be stupid! I voted YES on Measure A & B because I am tired of having only one candidate running for Police Chief. Glossy flyers do not provide details about a candidate. The purpose of having an appointed Police Chief is that the person’s qualifications can be fully vetted AND that person would be interviewed by multiple people within City Hall in order to get a consolidat4ed agreement it is the right person for Police Chief. Right now, we have a Police Chief that will not provide any information about his education. Why is that? Our Police Chief prior to Pat Nikolai had a Law Degree and had attended multiple high-level law enforcement trainings with the FBI. What qualifications does Pat Nikolai have? It is terrifying the number of mass shootings that are occurring throughout the United States. Do I have any confidence that Pat Nikolai would be able to coordinate Police efforts if we have any type of situation here in Santa Clara? My answer is a resounding NO, NO, NO!!!

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