Democratic Pleasanton Mayor Jennifer Hosterman swept past city Councilman Steve Brozosky today by 115 votes when the Alameda County Registrar of Voters posted absentee ballot returns. Hosterman had been hampered in the race because of reports that she had been using her city e-mail account for political campaigning. Until today's update, she had been trailing Brozosky by 120 votes. However, the ballot update, which included a tally of nearly 70,000 absentee and provisional ballots, did not change any of the other tight races.
In Berkeley, liberal Councilman Kriss Worthington extended his lead over challenger George Beier, a moderate, by 214 votes. Before the absentees, Worthington led by just 131 votes. And for the AC Transit District 3 seat, attorney Elsa Ortiz furthered her lead over Alameda City Councilman Tony Daysog to a 146-vote margin. Prior to the update, Ortiz led by just 53 votes.
The nearly 70,000 absentees and provisionals also pushed the total voter turnout above 50 percent. Of the 678,765 registered county voters, 374,063 of them cast ballots, for a turnout of 55.11 percent. There were 103, 861 more ballots cast on November 7 than in the June 2006 election, which had only a 39.1 percent turnout. Voter turnout last week also outpaced the last midterm election in the county -- November 2002. That turnout was 53.44 percent.
Today's update also did not change the outcome of the closely watched District 2 Oakland City Council race. Incumbent Pat Kernighan defeated challenger Aimee Allison, 53.8 percent to 45.9 percent. In that race, 511 more votes were cast in the Nov. 7 election than in June when Kernighan led 46.1 to 39.3.
County registrar spokesman Guy Ashley said there were only a "a few thousand" ballots left to count, including those that were damaged or marked incorrectly. There are also some provisional ballots to be tallied. "We hope to be done by the end of the week, although we have until December 5 to certify the election," he said.
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