The Latest: Tucson voters elect first Latina mayor
TUCSON, Ariz. (AP) — The Latest on elections in Tucson, Arizona (all times local):
Tucson voters have elected their first Latina mayor.
Democrat Regina Romero was overwhelmingly elected Tuesday to lead Arizona’s second-largest city.
She’ll be the first woman to lead Tucson and the first Hispanic since 1875, nearly four decades before Arizona became a state.
Romero was raised by migrant farmworkers in southwestern Arizona. She was elected to the city council in 2007 and is the director of Latino engagement for an environmental group.
She defeated independent Ed Ackerley and Mike Cease of the Green Party in one of Arizona’s most Democratic cities. Her victory was widely expected after she beat former state lawmaker Steve Farley in the Democratic primary.
An initiative making Tucson Arizona’s only sanctuary city appears headed for defeat.
Early ballots Tuesday showed voters were rejecting the initiative by more than a 2 to 1 margin.
A defeat would be a relief for the Democrats who control city government in one of Arizona’s most liberal cities. They worry the initiative would jeopardize millions of dollars in state and federal funding and put public safety at risk.
The initiative was proposed by a group of activists motivated by the Trump administration’s treatment of immigrants and Arizona’s tough laws cracking down on people living in the country illegally.
Tucson voters are deciding whether to make the liberal enclave Arizona’s only sanctuary city.
The measure known as Proposition 205 is on the ballot Tuesday in Arizona’s second most populous city.
Supporters say a victory would send the message to immigrants that they’re valued and protected.
It comes amid fierce anger on the left at President Donald Trump’s immigration policies. The measure aims to put new restrictions on when police can inquire about immigration status or cooperate with federal law enforcement.
The Democratic City Council strongly opposes the sanctuary initiative. Mayor Jonathan Rothschild says the city already has strong protections for immigrants. He worries it would endanger state and federal funding.
Both sides say the measure is likely to end up in court if it’s approved.