Tag Archives: Berkeley elections

And then there was one: Measure T down to single vote

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In the latest results from the Registrar of Voters, the Yes on T campaign has inched into the lead: 16,640 to 16,639.

On election night, opponents of Measure T, which would change zoning in West Berkeley, had a 123 vote lead. That narrowed yesterday to 26, and today it vanished.

None of the other Berkeley races have changed much in the latest update. Opponents of Measure S, the sit ordinance, still lead by nearly 1,000 votes, 18,254 to 17,273.

The Alameda County Registrar plans to issue a daily update until all votes are counted.

View a photo gallery of democracy in action as Alameda County Registrar employees continue to process outstanding ballots. … Continue reading »

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After loss, mayoral candidates say voters want change

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Berkeley Mayor Tom Bates may have won re-election Tuesday, but his challengers say their campaigns still made a difference.

Councilman Kriss Worthington, second place finisher, said he knew the odds were daunting.

“I knew that running against an incumbent with a lot of money who had been in office for 34 years was not a cake walk,” he said. “But I also knew that allowing it to be a coronation where he got 70% or 75% of the votes would mean the drift to the right might continue.”

Worthington had garnered 21.2% of the vote as of Wednesday evening, with perhaps as many as 20,000 ballots still to be counted.

Jacquelyn McCormick, who had 11.3% of the votes by yesterday, and came in third in the mayoral race, said she felt the re-election of Mayor Bates spelled bad news for Berkeley. Reading Mayor Bates’ comments in Berkeleyside yesterday, she said, it was “hard to take his arrogance.” “We need change. [Bates] is pushing an agenda on the backs of everyone who lives in this city.” … Continue reading »

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Election email overload: What gives?

One California voter takes a look at a day of campaign mailers. Photo:  Robert Couse-Baker
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By November in a big election year, many residents are familiar with the daily handful of campaign literature that bursts forth from the mailbox in the form of pamphlets, sample ballots and oversized postcards.

But we heard from several readers this election season who noticed an onslaught of campaign emails in their virtual inboxes as well, from a wide variety of sources.

One reader connected the emails to his decision to opt out of receiving the sample election ballot; he said the Registrar of Voters’ office asked for an email address for confirmation purposes when he opted out.

He said he was concerned to find his information turning up in the hands of third parties without his permission.

He wrote: “If Facebook was doing this people would scream bloody murder. Plus I still get paper sample ballots anyway. Not a catastrophe, I understand, but sketchy as hell…” … Continue reading »

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West Berkeley measure gap narrows to 26 votes

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The latest Berkeley vote tallies, updated with some of the vote by mail and provisional ballots, have further narrowed the gap on Measure T, which would revise some of the zoning in West Berkeley. Overnight, opponents to Measure T had a 123 vote lead. That’s now down to 26 votes.

Measure S remains close, but the gap is still significant at 1,001.

Alameda County Registrar of Voters Dave Macdonald released the latest figures this afternoon shortly after 4:00 p.m. and will be doing so daily until all the ballots are processed.

“This election has been very typical,” Macdonald said, responding to questions about the volume of uncounted ballots. “We have 100,000 vote by mail and 40,000 provisional ballots left countywide. It’s been a very smooth election.” … Continue reading »

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Mayor Bates hails election as harbinger of change

Bates HQ by DH Parks
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On the surface, the local Berkeley vote appears to provide an echo of the national election story: after all the activity, accusations and counter-accusations, inside money and outside money, the city is about where it was before election day.

Many provisional and mail ballots have yet to be counted, but if the results don’t shift significantly, just about all of the incumbents were re-elected (only the Rent Board remains in doubt) and the majority on the City Council still sides with fourth term Mayor Tom Bates.

But Bates sees the results as a confirmation of change in Berkeley. Even seeming defeats, such as the currently trailing Measures S and T, spur his enthusiasm.

“I’m feeling great,” he said. “It was a really excellent election, for the presidential race, Prop. 30 and Prop. 32. And I got back my council.”

As for his own victory in pulling in 55% of the votes counted so far, Bates said he thought the result was remarkable given that he had “five opponents pounding away at me and at my record.”

He said he thought the result showed that “people like the tack we are trying to take with the city,” which he described as a denser city developed around transit sites. “I’m really looking forward to the next four years and to seeing new green, well-designed developments in downtown Berkeley,” he said. “Stay tuned.”

Some contestants had been hoping this was a year for realignment of Berkeley politics. The “Anybody But Bates” plan by challengers Kriss Worthington and Jacquelyn McCormick, however, failed to force an instant run-off in the mayoral contest. Among local measures, the two designed to shake up the way city government works — Measure U, the so-called Sunshine Ordinance, and Measure V, which would have required biannual reporting of liabilities and a freeze on taxes and laws without certification — were roundly defeated.  … Continue reading »

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Remaining Berkeley votes could change close contests

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Update, 11:45 a.m.: According to election law, the remaining votes must be counted and reported within 31 days of the election, so by Dec. 7. Councilman Gordon Wozniak, writing in our Comments section, says it will likely take about one week: “It takes about a week to count all the absentee ballots that arrived on Election Day or were dropped off at a polling place, plus provisionals,” he says.

From the Secretary of State website: “In close contests, a clear winner may not be apparent for many days, as county officials verify and count millions of unprocessed ballots that include vote-by-mail ballots, provisional ballots cast at polling places, and others. By law, counties have 31 days to complete their official canvass and certify final election results to the Secretary of State, and they often need that full month to finish the work.”  [Hat-tip Alina.]

Original story: The vote tallies announced by the Registrar of Voters last night are probably missing at least 20,000 Berkeley votes, which means some of the close Berkeley races could be affected.

The vote on Measure T, the West Berkeley zoning changes, is particularly close. Only 123 votes separate the two sides. Measure S, the sit ordinance, is also close, with 1,055 votes between the sides.

Last night, 32,661 votes were recorded in the mayoral contest. Four years ago, over 56,000 Berkeleyans voted for mayor. Given the high turnouts observed in Berkeley yesterday, it’s clear there are plenty of votes remaining to be counted. … Continue reading »

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Berkeley’s election night live blogging: latest results

Mayor Tom Bates, comfortably re-elected. Photo: Emilie Raguso
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9:10 a.m. That isn’t quite it. As several commenters have pointed out, there are plenty of Berkeley votes still to be counted: most of the absentees, provisional ballots, many vote-by-mail ballots. If turnout is around 2008 levels, it might be another 20,000 votes. Some of the close races — particularly Measure T and rent board seats — could well change. Measure S, with a 1,000 vote margin for the opponents, is less likely to change, but it’s not impossible.

1:30 a.m. That’s it. We’re wrapping up our live blogging of the Berkeley election, long after the rest of the nation went to sleep. Thanks for sticking with us. Here are the main stories: Bates re-elected comfortably, Capitelli defeats Hahn, Measures S and T both fail in close contests.

1:28 a.m. And the measures:

Measure M, Streets and Watershed
Yes 24,000 (73.28%)
No 8,751 (26.72%)

Measure N, Pools Bond (requires two-thirds)
Yes 19,901 (62.12%)
No 12,134 (37.88%) … Continue reading »

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Photo slideshow: Berkeley goes out to vote

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Berkeleyside contributing photographer Pete Rosos was out early today, capturing some of the city’s election moments. (Click “Show Info” for caption information.)

See the latest campaign finance information at Berkeley Voter’s Edge, our collaboration with MapLight. Find your polling place, or a spot to drop off your absentee ballot, via our handy map. And see all Berkeleyside’s election-related coverage here.

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Board candidate accuses Capitelli aide of trespassing

Pamela Gray, an aide to Laurie Capitelli, took this photo of campaign signs she said she found in Alejandro Soto-Vigil's recycling bin on Monday.
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A candidate for the Berkeley Rent Board, who is also an aide to City Councilman Kriss Worthington, filed a police complaint Monday charging that the aide to City Councilman Laurie Capitelli trespassed on his property.

Alejandro Soto-Vigil said that his wife saw Capitelli’s aide and campaign manager, Pamela Gray, walk onto his property on Berkeley Way around 3:20 p.m. to look at a recycling bin that was stuffed with campaign signs.

“Pam apparently had gone onto our doorstep and porch looking at things and then she went to the recycling area and pulled out some signs and started taking photos,” said Soto-Vigil.

Capitelli told Berkeleyside that he and Gray were delivering campaign material to Soto-Vigil’s neighbor when they saw that the recycling bin contained campaign signs. Since so many of Capitelli’s signs have been torn up or taken during the election, he wanted to see if any of them were in there. They were not. … Continue reading »

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Snapshot: How is voting going in Berkeley?

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[View the story "Election day in Berkeley, so far..." on Storify]

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Where to watch election results in Berkeley

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We definitely want to hear from you throughout election night. Here’s how: (1) Post on our Facebook page. Comment on the outcomes, share photos of your election event, and more. (2) Email us at tips@berkeleyside.com. You can always reach us via this address. (3) On Twitter, use #berkvote to alert us to your election-related posts, and follow us here.

Berkeleyside will live blog about local reactions and the results of all the local races starting at 8 p.m. on Nov. 6. Scroll down to see a list of election night parties open to the public in Berkeley. … Continue reading »

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Why do some absentee voters get free postage?

Some Alameda County residents received mail-in ballots with the postage already paid.
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Last week, after reading Berkeleyside’s round-up on postage costs for mail-in ballots, we heard from one reader who described himself as “truly baffled.” Officials had said voters in Berkeley had absentee ballots requiring postage up to $1.50 due to multiple inserts for a long list of races and ballot measures.

But not this reader. He wrote: “Not only did we not receive ‘an insert to explain postage rates,’ but we did receive an insert describing the ‘postage-paid return envelope.’ And, indeed, the envelope is stamped ‘No Postage Necessary if Mailed in the United States.’ Proof is attached. Were my wife and I sent the wrong ballots or envelopes?”

Dave Macdonald, Alameda County registrar of voters, explained the situation on Monday afternoon. … Continue reading »

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Still undecided about the election? Let us help

Will you miss all the lawn signs on Berkeley medians after tomorrow? Photo: Alan Tobey
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Over the last several months, Berkeleyside has run many dozens of articles on Berkeley’s mayoral election, council seat races, the school board contest, the rival rent board slates and most of the 10 city measures on the ballot tomorrow. On top of that, our collaboration with MapLight on Voter’s Edge Berkeley provides a handy one-stop site for information about the ballot measures. And our Opinionator op-ed section has overflowed with rival views about various election issues.

What Berkeleyside is not going to do is make any endorsements in the election. There are two reasons why. First, we believe in an educated, informed citizenry. Newspaper endorsements are a relic of a pre-Internet era when readers had to rely on insiders to tell them what was what. Our goal is to make sure you have as much information as we have, so you can make up your own mind. We don’t feel the urge to make it up for you. Second, we work hard to be impartial in our news reporting of Berkeley. Even if we convince ourselves that we could create neat compartments between our opinions and our reporting, our readers would be understandably skeptical. … Continue reading »

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