05 May 2010

Denver City Council Vacancy Election Results In

The results in the vacancy election for Denver's 1st City Council District (Northwest Denver) are now available:

Paula E. Sandoval 1,748 22.59%
Susan Shepherd 1,328 17.16%
K. Jerry Frangas 1,178 15.22%
John Haney 971 12.55%
Larry Ambrose 782 10.11%
Ken Padilla 770 9.95%
Randle Swan 363 4.69%
Jon Lehmann 281 3.63%
Chris Jeffrey 163 2.11%
Georgia A. Sigala 118 1.52%
Write-In 36 0.47%
Total Votes 7,738

Active Registered Voters: 23,013
Inactive Registered Voters: 2,418
Total Registered Voters: 25,431
Ballots counted: 7,785

Paula Sandoval is the first place finisher by a safe margin, although she did not capture a majority of the vote. Sandoval had the backing of much of the local political establishment and relatively fat warchests.

The election was for the one year term until May 2011 when the seat will be contested again as part of the regular municipal elections. The vacancy was created when Rick Garcia resigned to take a job as a regional director in the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development.

In a regular municipal election, this result would lead to a runoff election betwen Sandoval and runner up Susan Shepherd. But, the Denver Post's coverage implies that there are no runoffs in vacancy elections.

Denver's municipal government officers are officially non-partisan. Both Sandoval and Frangas have held partisan elected offices as Democrats in Colorado, and Shepherd's background was as a union employee. John Haney had endorsement from two police officer's unions and made headlines by providing stamps to prospective mail in voters, a controversial move that was found not to constitute an illegal monetary encouragement to vote for him.

Also running in the race were neighborhood activist Larry Ambrose . . . Denver police Detective John Haney; Christopher Jeffrey, who owns a human-resource consulting firm; Jon Lehmann, an environmental lawyer and the son of Denver Councilwoman Peggy Lehmann; civil rights lawyer Kenneth Padilla; nonprofit coordinator Georgia Sigala; and Randle Swan, treasurer of the Colfax Business Improvement district.

All of the candidates were Democrats except Christopher Jeffrey (Unaffiliated) and Randy Swan (Republican), and combined, they received less than 6.8% of the vote.

Sandavol's seat in the Colorado Senate (SD 34) will be filled by a Democratic party vacancy committee on May 16 at SEIU Local 105 at 2525 W. Alameda Ave. in Denver, starting at 1 p.m. The vacancy committee includes Precinct Committee Persons, Senate District Officers, House District Officers, Sub-district Officers, Democratic elected officials, and party officials, including Democratic National Committee, Colorado Democratic Party, and Democratic Party of Denver officials who live in SD 34. This is after the conclusion of the 2010 legislative session which is now in its final days.

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