Final City Council Vote Count Affirms Election of Rosenthal and La Monte
• Runner-up’s Numbers Are Similar to 2006 Tally
BY BILL KOENEKER
BY BILL KOENEKER
The official vote count posted by the Malibu City Clerk last Thursday night did not change the results of Tuesday’s preliminary tally.
With all of the vote by mail ballots that were submitted at the polls counted and the provisional ballots tallied, the results were: Laura Rosenthal won by 1734 votes, with Lou La Monte taking the second seat with 1324 votes. John Mazza came in third with 1254 votes, and his slatemate Steve Scheinkman followed with 1152 votes.
Mike Sidley beat out the remaining other candidates with 552 votes, followed by Ed Gillespie with 249 votes. Kofi slipped by Harold Greene by one vote with 180. Matthew Katz collected 98 votes and Jan Andrew Swift, who did not campaign, received 64 votes.
How the vote count unfolded was “déjà vu all over again” for Mazza, as La Monte increased his lead from 53 votes on Tuesday night to 70 after the final count of all the votes was made last week to take one of the two vacant seats on the city council. The results mirrored Mazza’s unsuccessful bid for city council in 2006.
The slim lead La Monte kept over Mazza was much like the race four years ago, when Sharon Barovsky edged out Mazza. There were almost the same number of uncounted absentee ballots and provisional ballots at the 2006 election, and the chance for Mazza to win “statistically” on Tuesday night paralleled last week’s situation.
Hoping that it might be different this time, Mazza again decided not to concede the race on Tuesday night, waiting instead for the final count.
In the 2006 election, incumbent Barovsky’s seat remained in question with the two-term member garnering 1263 votes to challenger Mazza’s 1207 ballots. The near “cliffhanger” was again the same as this year. There were 207 uncounted ballots with 127 absentee ballots and 80 provisional ballots that were counted on Wednesday.
In 2006, when the counting was done and the dust settled, Barovsky retained her seat and increased her lead to 70 votes. Those results ended up with Barovsky having received 1353 votes to Mazza’s 1283 votes.
What was different for Mazza this year was Scheinkman, who ran on a slate with Mazza, and made an impressive showing given his status as a newcomer.
Scheinkman received just 102 votes less than Mazza on his first time out. Could Scheinkman have “stolen” votes from Mazza? It seems unlikely, given that the three times Mazza has run he has never been able to capture more than 1300 votes, which appears to be his core constituency.
In 2006, Mazza’s strongest support came from Point Dume and western Malibu, where the challenger received more votes than Barovsky in those precincts.
The same was not quite true this year. In Mazza’s home turf on Point Dume, the voting for Precincts 60 and 62 at the elementary school had La Monte taking the vote 234 to Mazza’s 217. Rosenthal scored big with 396 votes.
In 2006, Precincts 60 and 62 gave Mazza 147 votes to Barovsky’s 91. Precincts 51 and 56 in western Malibu found Mazza capturing 136 votes to Barovsky’s 97. In Malibu Park, Mazza took 84 votes to Barovsky’s 54.
The same was true for Mazza capturing votes over La Monte this year in western Malibu, with Mazza winning Precincts 51 and 56 at the Malibu West Swim Club by 217 votes to La Monte’s 183. Precinct 57, voting at the Malibu High School, saw Mazza prevail over La Monte 166 to 100, and Precincts 59 and 63, voting at Christian Science Church, gave Mazza 258 votes to La Monte’s 196.
In 2006, Barovsky kept up her lead by picking up more votes in eastern Malibu. La Monte captured eastern Malibu this year. In 2006, Barovsky sometimes captured double the votes of Mazza.
Mazza never made up the difference this year with Precincts 2 and 4, voting at Duke’s, giving La Monte the solid lead with 286 votes over Mazza’s 147.
Another race in 2008 was altogether different, there were only 17 uncounted ballots on Tuesday night. Pamela Conley Ulich was the top vote-getter capturing 2115 votes. Jefferson Wagner gathered 1686 votes, more than 260 ahead of John Sibert who received 1419.
In 2004, Ken Kearsley, the top vote-getter, garnered 1941 votes with Jeff Jennings capturing 1855 and Pamela Conley Ulich gathering 1647. Mazza was a write-in candidate in that election and received 1234 votes.
In the April election in 2000, voter turnout was lower than 2004, both Barovsky and Andy Stern won seats at 1587 and 1543 respectively.