Results were mixed for several elected officials with Long Beach ties who were vying for State and county positions during yesterday’s election, with Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell’s advancement to a November general election for LA County Sheriff being the highlight.
Outgoing 9th District Council Member Steve Neal (15.1%) lost his bid for the 64th Assembly District seat and current 2nd District Council Member Suja Lowenthal (27%) also fell short in her campaign for the 70th Assembly District. Both finished in third place.
Current Carson council member Mike Gipson, taking 51% of the vote in the race for the 64th, will face off with Prophet Walker who garnered 21.4%. Meanwhile the current 4th District Council member Patrick O’Donnell (41%) and John C. Goya (32%) are headed to a runoff election to decide the 70th Assembly District.
McDonnell garnered over 240,000 votes accounting for 49.1% of the ballots cast for Los Angeles County Sheriff but fell short of the required 50% plus one needed to win. He’ll face off in the November 4 general election against retired deputy Sheriff Paul Tanaka. Although only taking in 14.7 percent of the vote, Tanaka was the opponent with the next-highest vote tally out of the field of seven candidates and goes to the runoff by rule.
The Sheriff’s department has been riddled with scandal and controversy, including the filing of criminal charges against 18 former deputies alleging that they abused inmates and obstructed a FBI investigation of the county’s jail system. Longtime Sheriff Lee Baca suddenly retired in the wake of those allegations.
If McConnell wins the runoff he’ll be the first Sheriff elect in the last century to have no prior ties to the department.
Editor’s note: this article previously misstated that Gipson had won the 64th and that McDonnell faces a runoff.