Oakland Zoo Measure and Pete Stark Defeated

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We had considered these races too close to call yesterday, but in light of the fact that the Alameda County Registrar's Office counted about 15,000 ballots yesterday and neither of these two contests budged, we have concluded that Measure A1, the Oakland Zoo tax, has been defeated and that longtime East Bay Congressman Pete Stark has lost reelection. Stark also conceded defeat yesterday afternoon to Dublin City Councilman Eric Swalwell.

Measure A1, a countywide parcel tax, needed 66.7 percent of the vote to pass, but it only has 62.75 percent of the vote so far. According to our calculations, Measure A1 would need to grab 78.5 percent of the remaining 125,000 uncounted ballots to win. That's statistically unlikely, because it would mean that the late absentees and provisional ballots would have to be greatly different than the 415,000 ballots counted so far. Measure A1 was also plagued by controversy in the campaign.

Swalwell
  • Swalwell
Stark, meanwhile, is just too far behind Swalwell to catch up. Currently, he's trailing by 9,911 votes, and is losing 53.1 percent to 46.9 percent. It appears that the moderate Swalwell benefited greatly by California's top-two election system, picking up conservative votes that, in the past, would have gone to a Republican candidate. Stark also made several missteps during the campaign.

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