Friday, November 5, 2010
Kamala Harris Lead Slips Below 10,000, L.A. Update Due Today
By a MetNews Staff Writer
Kamala Harris’s razor-thin lead in the contest for California attorney general became even thinner yesterday.
On Wednesday, with 100 percent of precincts reporting, but with more than a million or more provisional and vote-by-mail ballots left to be counted statewide, the San Francisco district attorney and Democratic nominee was ahead by 14,838 votes, or 0.2 percent. But as of 2:34 p.m. yesterday, her lead over Republican Steve Cooley, the Los Angeles district attorney, was only 9,364, or 0.1 percent.
Cooley’s gain appeared to have come primarily out of a Wednesday night update from Orange County, which processed about 30,000 additional ballots. The state’s largest Republican county gave Cooley a 30-point lead on Tuesday, and the Wednesday update cut the margin to less than 9,000.
Harris recovered slightly yesterday, primarily on the basis of updated numbers from Santa Clara County, where she is ahead by about 18 percentage points.
The Harris campaign Tuesday told reporters it was not declaring victory, but was feeling confident that the momentum had shifted to their candidate by election day, after public and private polls had given Colley a 5-to-7 point lead earlier.
They, and the Cooley camp, may have a better idea of where the race is headed when Los Angeles County, which has estimated it had nearly 400,000 VBM and provisional ballots to count, delivers its first update. That is expected to occur after 5 p.m. today.
Registrar-Recorder Dean Logan said he expects to give further updates every Tuesday and Friday until Nov. 30, when the canvass must be completed by law. Harris leads the Republican in his home county by 14 points, meaning Cooley did much better here than any other member of the state Republican ticket, but not nearly as well as polling projected.
The Cooley campaign responded to the new numbers yesterday, saying it believes there are more than 1.3 million outstanding votes statewide, and that more of them are in pro-Cooley than pro-Harris counties.
A Harris victory would give Democrats a sweep of the state constitutional offices. She would join Governor-elect Jerry Brown, Lt. Gov.-elect Gavin Newsom, and Insurance Commissioner-elect Dave Jones, as well as three reelected officials—Treasurer Bill Lockyer, Controller John Chiang, and Secretary of State Debra Bowen.
All are lawyers except Newsom, whose father was a First District Court of Appeal justice.
Copyright 2010, Metropolitan News Company