It appears that the Assembly will be down a member very soon, as Paul Krekorian from the 43rd District appears to have won election to the Los Angeles City Council.
The election results at this moment:
Krekorian: 9,212 (57.18%)
Essel: 6,898 (42.82%)
This figure is with 62% of precincts reporting. The campaign appears to have been won via absentees, as 10,988 absentee ballots were cast in the race, with Krekorian garnering 58% of those votes. Essel’s mail and field campaign was expected to do better with in-person voters, but there just aren’t enough to go around. With 62% of precincts reporting, there have only been 5,176 poll votes counted, which means that there should only be about 3,120 left to be counted from the remaining 38% of the precincts. Krekorian leads by 2,314 votes as of this counting, meaning that Essel would need to have won over 74% of the votes that have yet to be counted. There’s no way.
It’s worth pointing out that many prognosticators expected Essel to win this runoff in a low-turnout election with an advantage in spending that totaled somewhere around 4 to 1. Sometimes, though, it seems like volunteers and dedication can beat massive amounts of independent expenditure money, and this appears to be one of those cases..
Later this week I’ll take a look at the field for the upcoming special election in AD-43. Congratulations, Councilmember-elect Paul Krekorian.