RCV RESULTS GIVE CASSIDY A SLIGHT MAJORITY OVER SANTOS FOR SAN LEANDRO MAYOR
By Steven Tavares
Preliminary Ranked Choice Voting results released Friday afternoon give Stephen Cassidy the lead over San Leandro Mayor Tony Santos. The Alameda County Registrar of Voters' tabulations give Cassidy a majority after an initial running its computer algorithm used for the first time in Alameda County. Cassidy leads with 50.96 percent of the vote versus 49.04 for Santos. The results are not official until all voter-by-mail ballot are counted.
The breakdown of second-place votes of each candidates show an sizable tilt towards Cassidy. The direction of the election after Tuesday night hinged squarely on how supporters of Councilwoman Joyce Starosciak broke with their rankings. Not only did they clearly back Cassidy, but supporters of Sara Mestas and John Palau also gave strong support.
Santos' campaign had expected to make up their 27 vote difference coming into today by sweeping the second choice votes of Mestas and Palau. Instead, Mestas received the highest number of votes in the second round from Palau, which suggest most of the support for both candidates, who finished a distant fourth and fifth, encompassed a unwavering protest vote.
If it stands, Cassidy would be the first candidate to upend an incumbent mayor from office in the city's history. San Leandro residents began directly electing their mayor in 1962.
In Oakland, RCV has also provided a shocker showing Councilwoman Jean Quan overtaking favorite and first-place vote-getter Don Perata.