Photo by Keeley Smith.
With the final update to the June 7 municipal general election vote count, Second District city council candidate Jeannine Pearce emerged victorious, clinching the seat by 322 votes, with 5,706 votes to rival Eric Gray’s 5,384 votes.
Pearce won with 51.45 percent of the vote to Gray’s 48.55 percent, according to the Los Angeles County Recorder-Registrar website.
"Extremely excited that our margin of victory has reached 51.45% of over 11,000 votes cast for the June election," Pearce told the Post after learning the final results. "I've committed the last decade of my life to increasing community engagement, so to win in a historic election for our Second District fills me with great pride. [...] I'd like to thank Eric Gray for acknowledging the election results early on and working with his supporters to reunite the district after a hard fought campaign. We are one district, that will thrive by working together and not letting outside interests pull us apart."
Gray thanked his supporters in a Facebook post today, saying.
“After a year of campaigning, knocking on doors, meet and greets, phone banking, endorsement interviews, meeting new people, and $155,000 of fundraising later, I’m ready to move onto the next adventure,” wrote Gray. “THANK YOU to all of you who supported in this election whether it be friends, neighbors, family, business, labor unions, organizations, and local elected officials who believed in me and my campaign. I’m excited to see what the future holds.”
Gray elaborated on his next chapter in a conversation with the Post last month:
“Right now my immediate plans are to focus on my technology business, personal life, and community groups I am a part of,” Gray said. “Long Beach is a great city with amazing people and so much potential. I hope to be in positions which will allow me to make significant contributions beyond my previous roles.”
In his post, Gray noted voter turnout was exceptionally high this year, with 11,090 people voting in comparison to 2,505 votes cast in 2012, 6,008 votes cast in 2006 and 2,165 votes cast in 2004.
Pearce expressed an eagerness to begin her leadership role.
"Since June 8, I have been working to ensure I can walk in on day one and lead on the very issues residents prioritized in this race; homelessness, parking, and equity," she said. "I hope residents and all stakeholders will join me on July 19th for our swearing in."
Pearce will replace two-term City Councilwoman Suja Lowenthal.