Recall wins, Sheriff Smith to face a runoff, Waddell-Magee race too close to call, one school measure losing

Santa Clara County results           San Mateo County results

By the Daily Post staff

12:30 a.m. — The battle for superintendent of San Mateo County Board of Education is too close to call with 188 votes separating the two candidates.

Throughout the evening, Gary Waddell, who is deputy superintendent of instruction at the San Mateo County Board of Education, has been leading, but the margin has shrunk with each batch of votes that have been posted.

At one point, he was ahead of Nancy Magee, associate superintendent, by 1,369 votes. By 10 p.m., the margin shrunk to 977 votes. At 11:30, the difference was just 327 votes.

The outcome may well be determined over the next two weeks as mail ballots and provisional ballots are counted.

Midnight — Voters have recalled Judge Aaron Persky over the six-month jail sentence he gave Stanford swimmer Brock Turner for sexual assault. With 61% of precincts reporting, the “yes” side won with 59.4% of the vote. It’s unlikely that the ballots left to be counted could overcome the 18.9 point lead of the “yes” side.

Retired Palo Alto judge LaDoris Cordell, who led Persky’s campaign, had this reaction:

“We did everything we could possibly do to fight the most dishonest campaign I had ever encountered. It was dishonest about who Aar- on Persky was on the bench, and dishonest about his record,” Cordell told the Post. “People were basically ill-informed about him and also about how the court system, and particu- larly the criminal justice system, works.”

Michele Dauber, the Stanford law professor who led the recall campaign, did not return a call from the Post seeking comment.

However, she told The Washington Post:

“Tonight many, many voters voted against the culture of impunity for high-status perpetrators of sexual assault or domestic violence … This election expresses clearly that sexual assault, sexual violence is serious and it has to be taken seriously by elected officials. It’s a historical moment when women across all sectors of society are standing up saying enough is enough.”

Cordell said she would continue to fight for an independent judiciary by working to make it more difficult to recall judges.

11:12 p.m. — The race for San Mateo County Superintendent of Education is tightening up. Gary Waddell is still in the lead, but the difference between him and Nancy Magee is tightening. His lead has slipped from 1,300 votes to 900 to 670 at this hour. Waddell leads with 50.62% or 27,494 votes compared to 49.38% or 26,824 for Magee. As they say on TV, stay tuned.

11:04 p.m. — Regional Measure 3, which would raise tolls by $3 for all Bay Bridges except the Golden Gate, is headed to victory tonight.

In the nine-county Bay Area, the measure, known as RM3, was leading 55% to 45% as of 11 p.m. Here’s a link to the Metropolitan Transportation Commission’s website, where they were keeping track of the totals from the counties.

Support was strongest in San Francisco (62% in favor) and Santa Clara County (61%). Opposition was the greatest in Solano County (only 32% in favor) and Contra Costa County (46%).

The toll hikes will help pay for a tunnel to extend BART to San Jose, a Caltrain extension to the Transbay Transit Center in San Francisco, new BART cars, toll lanes on Highway 101 and improvements to interchanges.

Opponents said the toll increases will hit the low- and middle-income commuters the hardest while the regions major employers won’t have to pay anything toward the $4.5 billion in projects that are apart of Regional Measure 3.

10 p.m. — Gary Waddell, who is deputy superintendent of instruction at the San Mateo County Board of Education, is leading in the race to become county superintendent.

With 50,477 votes counted, Waddell leads Nancy Magee, who is associate superintendent, by a 51.3% to 48.7% ratio. Waddell has been in the lead throughout the evening.

The race, which began last year, has been close throughout. As of late May, Magee had raised $122,112 while Waddell had collected $115,864 — a difference of about $6,000.

That shows how close the race had been.

9:52 p.m. — It appears the Belmont-Redwood Shores School District’s $118 parcel tax, known as Measure K, is headed for defeat.

With 4,402 ballots counted, the tax only has the support of 64.01% percent of the voters, and it needs 66.67% to pass. The total at this point is 2,728 to 1,534.

Ballots from the Belmont portion of the district still need to be counted.

Measure K would have raised $1.4 million a year and would have lasted five years.

The district argued that it needed the money because the state has been cutting its funding while enrollment has been soaring.

9:43 p.m. — With 39% of precincts reporting, it appears voters will be recalling Judge Aaron Persky. The yes side leads with 58.88% to 41.12%. That’s with 129,814 votes counted.

Assistant District Attorney Cindy Hendrickson appears to be heading to victory in the race to replace Persky. She has 70.57% compared to 29.43% for San Jose attorney Angela Storey.

As more votes come in, it appears Sheriff Laurie Smith will face a runoff this fall against her former undersheriff, John Hirokawa. She is leading with 45.5% of the vote, but she would need more than 50% to stop the fall runoff. Hirokawa has 30.42%. In third is bailiff Joe La Jeuness with 12.03%.

8:15 p.m. — The first batch of election results are in. In Santa Clara County, the recall of Judge Aaron Persky is head by a commanding margin of 59.3% yes and 40.7% no. Assistant District Attorney Cindy Hendrickson is way ahead of San Jose attorney Angela Storey in the race to replace Persky, leading 71.05% to 28.95%.

In the race for sheriff, it appears likely that five-term incumbent Laurie Smith will face a run-off this fall. She’s ahead with 45.71% of the vote, but she hasn’t reached the 50% threshold necessary to win the job outright in this election. At this point, it looks like her former undersheriff, John Hirokawa, will oppose her in November. He has 30.05% of the vote.

In San Mateo County, Gary Waddell is ahead of Nancy Magee in the hotly contested race for county Superintendent of Schools. With about 50,000 votes counted, Waddell leads with 51.37% to 48.63% for Magee.

Sheriff Carlos Bolanos is out way ahead of Deputy Mark Melville, 59.07% to 40.93%.

And it looks like Superior Court Judge Gerald Buchwald has survived a challenge to his re-election. San Carlos attorney Richard Wilson has 26.65% of the vote compared to 73.35% for Buchwald.

Four school districts in the mid-Peninsula have measures on the ballot. The only one that appeared to be in trouble was the $118 parcel tax the Belmont-Redwood Shores School District was trying to pass. Measure K needs to be approved by two-thirds of the voters and, after the first batch of returns, it only had 64.03% of the vote.

These are early returns, so these races could change throughout the evening and over the next two weeks as ballots are counted.


  1. The toll increase is ridiculous. It’s becoming too expensive to live here. I saw in the paper the other day that 46% of Bay Area residents are planning to pack up and move out. It’s things like this that are driving people away. These rotten politicians are making it impossible to live here.

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