Most Incumbents Fare Well; Three Greenfield Recalls Successful
June 6, 2012
After celebrating their own victories for state office, Santa Cruz County Supervisor Mark Stone and Assemblyman Bill Monning (Assembly and Senate, respectively) joined County Supervisor Jane Parker at Me-n-Ed's Pizza in Seaside to celebrate her victory over challenger Byrl Smith.
Met by a cheering crowd, Parker gave a short speech of gratitude from a chair after the county Elections Department's first round of reporting Tuesday night. As of midnight, with 84 percent of District 4 precincts reporting, Parker led with 56 percent of the vote.
Monning won his Senate primary handily with almost 64 percent of the vote.
Stone, a Democrat, will face Tuesday's second place finisher, Republican Tom Walsh in November for Assembly District 29. He took in almost 50 percent of the vote, and fellow-Democrat Bob Fultz is out of the race, having pulled in under 13 percent in the three-way primary.
Assemblyman Luis Alejo, D-Watsonville, held his seat firmly, earning 63 percent of the vote with 95 percent of precincts reporting, to beat two-time challenger Rob Bernosky.
Incumbent County Supervisor Fernando Armenta nearly swept his two opponents out of a recall, receiving more than 44 percent of the vote. He would've needed over 50 percent to win outright, and will face Salinas City Councilman Tony Barrera for a runoff in November. Barrera beat out fellow-Councilman and Alejo assistant Sergio Sanchez by 5 points for the runoff.
Incumbent Supervisor Dave Potter didn't do as well, with 43 percent of the District 5 vote (with 84 percent of precincts reporting.) Like Armenta, he was short of an outright win, and faces a close challenge in former supervisor Marc Del Piero, who lagged by just 1.3 percent.
Pacific Grove Mayor Carmelita Garcia, who lagged significantly in District 5 fundraising, received 15 percent of the vote.
In South County, Greenfield voters overwhelmingly recalled city council members Yolanda Teneyuque and John Martinez (by 72 and 65 percent, respectively). Mayor John Huerta also lost his seat in a closer recall, by 21 votes.
Huerta will be replaced by former mayor Leonard Dart; Teneyuque by former councilman Agapito Vazquez; and Martinez by Yvette Gonzalez. This new council likely keeps the 3-2 split, but shifts the majority bloc back to one that supported recently ousted police chief Joe Grebmeier.
Voter turnout for the controversial election was shy of 23 percent, with about 35,500 Monterey County voters casting ballots.
Check back Thursday for all things election at www.mcweekly.com/election2012, or find the paper on news stands, for more on these races.