It’s official! Bob Filner has won the mayor’s seat in San Diego. Carl DeMaio has conceded, local media report.
The Registrar of Voters has reported the result, with 100 percent of precincts reporting. The Congressman, the former City Councilman and former School Board member, U.S. Rep. Bob Filner has come out on top after a grueling mayoral race that began with four major candidates at the beginning of this year. Filner has 51 percent and DeMaio had 49 percent of votes.
About 10 a.m., today, Wednesday, Carl DeMaiol conceded, saying: “It’s time for all sides to come together and put the best interest of San Diego first.”
There are still more than 475,000 absentee and provisional ballots that need to be counted. The San Diego County Registrar said the final tally will be cmpleted Thursday by 5 p.m.
NBC San Diego reported:
Mayor Jerry Sanders congratulated Filner on his victory shortly after DeMaio conceded.
“He’s a long-time San Diegan and my hope is that he will continue to move our city forward with the kinds of reforms that have fueled San Diego’s turn-around,” said Sanders in a statement. “I wish him all the best and look forward to working with him to ensure a smooth transition.”
Filner said he will be an activist for San Diego communities, particularly those that have been neglected over the years.
At about 11:15 p.m. Tuesday, DeMaio addressed supporters, even though results at that time were still uncertain. He thanked supporters and gave special mention to his sister and his partner, Jonathan Hale. DeMaio would have been the first openly gay mayor of a major city if elected.
“You know we’ve been out and proud this whole time, and that hasn’t really mattered,” DeMaio said, looking at Hale. “And that’s what I love about San Diego.”
He also stressed the importance of abandoning political labels and working together as a city.
“When you strip away all the labels too often used in politics,” he said to supporters. “One label remains, one is strong – we are all San Diegans.”
Shortly after, Filner also appeared before his supporters. He asked for positive thoughts, but said he still felt confident that the later votes would come in to his favor.
“If you pray, we need your prayers,” Filner said. “Whether it’s Allah or God or whoever, we need your help tonight.”
He also harkened back to the promise made throughout his campaign that he would shift the power in City Hall to those who have been underrepresented in past administrations.
“The same people who are at the seat of power are at this table,” Filner said in the speech. “And I said to these people ‘I’m just going to move you way over. And we’re going to have new people at the table. And they’re gonna look a little different. They’re the people at the neighborhoods that have been neglected. The working people of this city. The people who care about the environment, the people who care about education. They have not been at the table.”