Tait Slate candidate Denise Barnes once again expanded her lead over Steve Chavez Lodge. Yesterday, the neophyte candidate led by 183 votes. 443 ballots were counted and now she is ahead by 187 votes.
It’s near-certain Barnes will take this. She’s been expanding her lead for the last week, and the universe of uncounted ballots is dwindling, meaning Lodge will have to take a huge chunk of those votes in order to prevail.
In District 3, leftist academic Jose F. Moreno picked up 42 votes, whittling Councilman Jordan Brandman’s lead from 279 to 237 votes.
The question is whether there are enough uncounted ballots in District 3 to allow Moreno to overtake Brandman? It’s hard to say, but odds are Brandman hangs on to win a squeaker.
Lost in that vote watching is the fact that once the four Anaheim city council races are decided, there will be a drawing of straws to determine which district will ex post facto be designated the short-term, two-year seat. When Anaheim expanded the size of the council from four to six members and shifted to by-district elections, one of the four seats on this year’s ballot had to be a two-year term in order to have three council seats up every election cycle. The normal method would have been to designate one of the seats the short-term, two-year seat ahead of time; that’s what Garden Grove did.
However, normal and Anaheim are often strangers – and under the city’s settlement agreement with Moreno and the ACLU, the short-term seat is designated after the election by having the four winners draw straws. Whoever draws the short straw gets a two-year term. If that turns out to be either Brandman or Mayor Pro Tem Lucille Kring, they will be barred from running again due to the term limit provisions in the city charter.