Councilman O'Donnell Is
|(June 6, 2012) -- Councilman Patrick O'Donnell has been reelected to a third term in LB's 4th Council district.
(Photo right: Councilman O'Donnell and wife Jennifer at the moment all precincts reported).
Roughly 19% of 4th district registered voters cast ballots in the June runoff.
(The City Clerk's office indicates that a total of 530 vote-by-mail (received before deadline) and provisional ballots remain to be counted.)
Among those present at Councilman O'Donnell's election night headquarters: Long Beach Police Officers Ass'n President Lt. Steve James, Mayor Bob Foster, ELB realtor Joe Sopo, government affairs advocates Mike Murchison, Matt Knabe and Diane Ripley, Councilman James Johnson, Assemblywoman Bonnie Lowenthal, former LB Councilman Evan Braude, LB Community College Trustees Mark Bowen and Roberto Uranga, former Councilwoman Tonia Reyes Uranga, previous 4th dist. candidate Herlinda Chico (ended her candidacy when O'Donnell announced he'd seek a third Council term).
Councilman O'Donnell took an early lead in vote-by-mail ballots and held it as precinct ballots were counted. At about 10:15 p.m. (with a sizable lead and 9 of 30 precincts reporting), he thanked supporters (including Mayor Foster, who congratulated him on his win) but O'Donnell stopped short of declaring victory. Moments before wrapping up his remarks, the final returns came in.
To hear Councilman O'Donnell's remarks in full, click here.
Councilman O'Donnell's third term election is the first since LB voters enacted a term limits ordinance that requires two-term incumbents to mount a write-in campaign and finish first or second in April before proceeding to a June runoff with their name printed on the ballot.
In the April election, organized labor waged independent campaigns supporting O'Donnell while the LB Area Chamber of Commerce "Jobs PAC" ran an independent campaign backing John Watkins. Mr. Supernaw ran a grassroots, low budget campaign and finished first while O'Donnell finished second. (Reps of the Watkins campaign and the Jobs PAC challenged nearly 100 O'Donnell write-in ballots in a City Clerk ordered April hand recount but neither party pursued them in court).
For the June runoff, incumbent O'Donnell raised sizable sum for his own campaign...and organized labor again spent large sums in independent campaigns supporting O'Donnell (in May, LBPOA PAC = $24,000+; LA County Fed'n of Labor PAC = $12,000+; LB Firefighters Ass'n PAC = $5,500).
A week before the June runoff, the O'Donnell campaign announced the endorsement of Mr. Watkins.
In 2011, Councilman O'Donnell announced his candidacy for the LB-area Assembly seat then being vacated by Assembly incumbent Bonnie Lowenthal in pursuit of a newly drawn state Senate seat. Assemblywoman Lowenthal subsequently dropped her state Senate candidacy and announced she'd seek another Assembly term...which led O'Donnell to announce he'd pursue a third Council term.
Assemblywoman Lowenthal's final Assembly term expires in 2014, midway during O'Donnell's third Council term. If O'Donnell were to run for and win an Assembly seat in 2014, that would open the 4th district seat two years early, inviting any number of candidates for a winner take all (no runoff) special election.
At a March candidate forum, Councilman O'Donnell was asked during Q & A if he would sign a written pledge to serve his entire four year Council term if
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