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Contra Costa: A new sheriff and more

By Lisa Vorderbrueggen
Wednesday, June 9th, 2010 at 12:33 am in Contra Costa Board of Supervisors, Contra Costa County, Contra Costa politics.

The vast majority of Contra Costa’s votes have been counted. Here’s a quick round-up of the results:

In a stunning turn of events, District Attorney candidate Mark Peterson received more votes than Dan O’Malley, 48 percent to 36 percent. O’Malley was widely expected to win; he had more money and nearly every single law enforcement endorsement in the county. But the two men are now headed for a run-off in November as neither collected 50 percent plus 1 vote.  As expected, Elle Falahat was the third-place finisher.

Say hello to the new sheriff, David Livingston. The Concord police chief has beat challenger, sheriff’s lieutenant and Antioch Councilman Brian Kalinowski: 56 percent to 44 percent.

In the Contra Costa County race to replace outgoing supervisor Susan Bonilla, Pleasant Hill Vice Mayor Karen Mitchoff emerged victorious over Central Sanitary District board member Mike McGill even after he dumped $50,000 of his own money into his campaign: 54 percent to 46 percent.

Assessor Gus Kramer beat down three opponents, winning the seat outright with 55 percent of the vote. His challengers never had enough money to wage a fullscale, countywide election for an arcane post and against a long-term incumbent.

Supervisor John Gioia easily won re-election with 80 percent of the vote. His challenger, Mister Phillips, had little money, few endorsements and baggage.

On local measures, school bonds in Mount Diablo and West Contra Costa unified school districts were both passing.

In contrast, Measure F in Brentwood, an urban limit line expansion proposal, went down hard at 57 percent to 43 percent. Proponents spent in excess of $279,000 — all of it from the landowners in the affected area — but failed to persuade voters. It’s the second growht boundary proposal that Brentwood voters have rejected in the past few years.

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  • John W

    Am thrilled to see the DA results. Voted for O’Malley but had buyer’s remorse.

  • D. Noodle

    What a great day. I am so thankful that people were able to see that O’Malley is a weak candidate. Maybe he should take some of that money and buy some coattail riding lessons. Perhaps Contra Costa can finally get a professional DA’s office. I am sure Paul Sequeira went home and broke all his toys. What did Barry do? Did he finally realize that DA votes and dollars count the same and perhaps less than Joe Public’s? Wait… Elle got votes? If you talked to Barry and his crew she was just a moronic defense attorney that couldn’t spell and had no felony experience. The jig is up. Who has the best deal on resume paper?

  • Truthclubber

    I am thrilled to see that the good people of Brentwood had the sense to ignore the lies being spread by developers about the need for yet more land to place houses on, given the vast number of yet-unbuilt in-fill that sits there.

    They realized that the only thing that will improve their currently underwater property values is…fewer properties around them.

  • The Inconvenient Truth

    If you’re looking for a best friend, Dan is your guy- If you are looking for a true leader, an experience prosecutor and most importantly, an ethical person, MARK PETERSON is the man for the job of DISTRICT ATTORNEY.

    The Contra Costa Times, (Borenstein et al) refused to hear and/or report the serious unethical conduct of Dan O’Malley. It was not political propaganda, but factual information on Dan’s suitability for the most powerful office in the county– Instead they based their endorsement on popularity and not the issues at hand.

    The voters in Contra Costa County realized that voting for a candidate who is endorsed by the office he intends to hold is disingenuous and is self serving. Many of the deputy DA’s do not even live in the county.

    The fact that a DA candidate who did not even campaign drew 20% of the vote shows the community is ready for real change and not the status quo.

    When you look at where donations for the O’malley campaign are sent, you can’t lose sight it is going to a CRIMINAL DEFENSE FIRM who are former prosecutors.

    The O’Malley campaign needs to concede this election to allow for the preparation of a smooth transition to better serve a community in dire need of change.

    This campaign should not be predicated on a popularity contest- but who is most suitable for office-

    MARK PETERSON is the only qualified and transparent candidate.

  • Mike F.

    Sorry to hear about McGill’s loss, I saw him as a problem solver for the hard budget decisions. I think it came down to image and familiarity. McGill was overly “nerdy” at public venues – my wife said so. Whereas Mitchoff walked neighborhoods and was more personable, and could use the Mayor status for name recognition.

  • http://www.petebennett.net Pete Bennett

    Some departments in Contra Costa County are simply pathetic and perhaps we’ve seen the last of Paul S. playing god over peoples lives. Perhaps 150 DA should live in CCC and perhaps they could bond with their citizens instead putting them in bondage?

    I have great reservations that nothing will change and the rouges that have their secret budgets that are more personal black ops used to take down whoever they feel should be taken down.

    My attorney was beaten and put in the hospital in 2006 with no arrest and he was going to sue the county in regards to my assault and battery.

    We will see if there is new breed in town or more political fodder.

  • Arne

    KUDOs to MARK PETERSON with his outstanding showing on Tuesday! I can only hope that the Elle voters will now support Mark in November (along with John W).

    District 4 is getting another DeSaulnier/Torlakson clone in Mitchoff. Clearly, as the CCTimes noted, Mike McGill was clearly the better candidate and not beholding to the unions or other special interests.

    And as someone else noted: Gus Kramer may be a ‘bad boy’, but he’s OUR ‘bad boy’ :) Well done Gus!!!

  • p.v.

    After reading the stuff on Claycord about O’Malley, particularly his double-standard on domestic violence which was good for a LAUGH, I definitely voted for Peterson. I hope he can clean the huge mess that the co co DA’s office is currently in and get them off of their lazy butts and get these people prosecuted and put behind bars.

  • John W

    Re: #8

    This being January, it may be a bit too early. But I hope the times will be doing some follow-up coverage on the DA’s office to see what changes are or aren’t taking place with Mark Peterson now in charge.