San Diegans head to polls as runoff looms

SAN DIEGO (CNS) – Voting to choose a successor to disgraced former San
Diego Mayor Bob Filner got underway Tuesday morning, with the focus on a battle
for the second spot on an expected runoff ballot.

With polls showing Councilman Kevin Faulconer enjoying a healthy lead,
his colleague David Alvarez and ex-Assemblyman Nathan Fletcher appear poised to
fight it out for the other position.

A candidate needs to pass the 50 percent mark to avoid a runoff. If a
second vote becomes necessary, it will take place early next year.

The most recent poll, released Sunday by SurveyUSA, measured Faulconer's
voter support at 40 percent, similar to other recent surveys.

“I can't wait for the polls to close tonight, and us to keep moving
forward — and moving forward quicker,” Faulconer said.

The Sunday poll
showed Fletcher with 24 percent and Alvarez with 22 percent support, a
statistical dead heat. Other polls have shown Alvarez with a slight advantage
over Fletcher.

Fletcher said Tuesday's voting brings the city “one step closer
to having a mayor who's going to stand up and fight for all San Diegans.”

Alvarez called attention to his attendance at every debate and forum to
which he was invited during the campaign, telling the television station,
“It's starting to look like people in San Diego are responding.”

More than 570 polling places are scheduled accept voters until 8 p.m.
Polling place locations can be found on the back of pamphlets sent to
registered voters or at the county Registrar of Voters website at

Registrar of Voters Michael Vu said 357,000 mail ballots were sent out
last month.

Nearly 37 percent of the electorate has already voted, either by
returning absentee ballots or going to the registrar's office,
reported Monday.

The first batch of results, from those ballots already cast, are
expected shortly after the polls close.

The special election was brought about by Filner's resignation in
August, when he was under fire for sexual harassment and being investigated for
various transgressions, including alleged shakedowns of developers. He
subsequently pleaded guilty to one felony count of false imprisonment by
violence and two misdemeanor counts of battery and was placed on three years

Other candidates include former City Attorney Michael Aguirre; lawyer
Hud Collins; Harry Dirks, a Realtor; San Diego State University student Michael
Kemmer; businessman Sina “Simon” Moghadam, construction superintendent Tobiah
Pettus; and retired contractor Lincoln Pickard. Engineer Farrah Pirahanchi
qualified as a write-in candidate.

Bruce Coons, whose name appears on the ballot, previously withdrew from
the race and threw his support to Alvarez.

Categories: KUSI