Faulconer To Be San Diego’s New Mayor
San Diego’s registered Dem voters out number Repub voters by 14%. David Alvarez (D) had a war chest of five million dollars financed by organized labor. He out spent Kevin Faulconer (R) by one million dollars. As well, Alvarez had a large Latino following in his effort to become San Diego’s first Latino mayor. However, Faulconer successfully went beyond ideology with wider appeal for common sense and working across the aisle. It resulted in the win, 55% to 45%. Interim mayor, Todd Gloria (D) has done an admirable job after replacing the disgraced Bob Filner. Both he and David Alvarez are young, up and coming local politicians.
From the NY Times:
A Republican city councilman handily won the special election to become San Diego’s mayor Tuesday and will serve out the term started by Bob Filner, a Democrat who resigned last year amid sexual harassment accusations.
The victory by Kevin Faulconer will make San Diego the largest city run by a Republican and raises the possibility that the 47-year-old former public relations executive could become an important leader in the efforts to rebuild the Republican Party in California. Mr. Faulconer won with 55 percent of the vote, compared with 45 percent for his Democratic opponent, David Alvarez.
The special election came nearly six months after Mr. Filner stepped down amid allegations that he sexually harassed dozens of women, including many top local leaders.
“Together we sent a very strong message tonight: that this city needs to have an independent leader, and that the city will stand up and work together,” Mr. Faulconer told supporters in downtown San Diego. “Every San Diegan has a chance at success and has a seat at the table.”
“We know that this city has gone through a lot in the last year, but we knew that as San Diegans that we were better than that.”
Mr. Alvarez’s campaign had tried to ride a wave of liberal populism, focusing on issues like raising the minimum wage and providing new city services in struggling neighborhoods. Mr. Faulconer emphasized his stances on fiscal issues like his support of a pension overhaul and contracting out city services, saying such efforts would enable the city to pay for other improvements.
Interestingly, Faulconer’s position on the city council will almost certainly be taken by a Dem. Which means the council will be comprised of six Ds and three Rs, meaning the council will be in a position to over ride any mayor’s veto. As a result, there may be a local left turn over the next ten months before mid term elections. As well, Todd Gloria, Kevin Faulconer and David Alvarez have worked well together in the past and the kind of ideological political games seen at the national level may be avoided here in San Diego.