Horn eeks out victory, lands sixth term
SAN DIEGO (CNS) – With 100 percent of precincts reporting, incumbent Bill Horn held onto a narrow lead early Wednesday, besting Oceanside Mayor Jim Wood for a San Diego County Board of Supervisors seat by 1,378 votes out of 56,562 votes cast.
But the San Diego County Registrar of Voters Office said there were still about 98,000 provisional ballots to be counted.
The two Republicans in the nonpartisan race are each seeking to represent the coastline from Camp Pendleton to Carlsbad, along with Oceanside, Vista and San Marcos, and several unincorporated communities.
Ron Roberts was unopposed for reelection to represent the majority of the city of San Diego on the board.
Horn, 77, a former Marine Corps officer and Vietnam veteran-turned-avocado and citrus grower, was first elected to the San Diego County Board of Supervisors in 1994. If he wins, he will be serving a sixth term.
Wood, 66, has served on the Oceanside City Council since 2002 following more than 30 years in law enforcement, and became the city’s mayor in 2004.
Both Horn and Wood listed economic development, public safety and fiscal responsibility among their top issues, but their opinions differed drastically on the county’s land use plan. The often-outspoken Horn voted against a general plan update because he said property owners’ rights would be violated. The plan eventually passed.
Combined, the supervisors represent about 3 million residents and oversee a nearly $5 billion budget.
In another closely watched county election, Assessor/Recorder/County Clerk Ernest Dronenburg, who drew fire after he filed court papers seeking clarification on issuing same-sex marriage licenses, but later withdrew the petition, was reelected to a second term.
Dronenburg outpaced consumer attorney Susan Guinn, real estate professional George Mantor and financial analyst Jonathan Gordon.
While Dronenburg was criticized for his actions on same-sex marriage, Guinn — who is married to her female partner — focused her campaign on eliminating the property assessment appeals backlog, ending “bloated budget, excessive fees and over-taxation,” and replacing outdated systems.