Costa Mesa/Garden Grove Update 11/10: Bao’s, Galloway’s and Measure J’s Gains are Good Omens for Humphrey




Some readers may not have realized, or may have forgotten, that I’m updating the current election update each day at this post located back on Nov. 5.  So from now on, I’m going to remind you.  One of the most useful things I’m doing there is keeping a running update of the “What’s Left to Count” notice for each day, which let’s us figure out what happened the previous day.  As we’re now preparing to start “all provisionals, all the time” after one more day of counting mixed types, that will become less important — but for now it’s worth taking a look:

Total estimated number of ballots to count (after Election Day): 150,305  165,305  177,305

Total estimated number of ballots counted (after Election Day): 14,765  43,792 79,638 111,235  138,714

Total estimated number of ballots left to count: 135,540  106,513  70,667  54,070 38,591 

Total estimated number of vote-by-mail ballots to count: 40,000

Total vote-by-mail ballots counted: 14,765  40,000

Total estimated number of vote-by-mail ballots left to count: 25,235  0

Total estimated number of provisionals to count: 38,513

Total provisionals counted: 0 5,849

Total estimated number of provisionals left to count: 38,513 32,664

Total estimated number of vote-by-mail ballots returned at the polls to count: 66,000  81,000 93,000

Total vote-by-mail ballots returned at the polls counted: 0  3,792  39,638  71,235 87,615

Total estimated number of vote-by-mail ballots returned at the polls left to count: 66,000  62,208  26,362 9765 5385 

Total estimated number of election day paper ballots to count: 5792

Total election day paper ballots counted: 0 5250

Total estimated number of election day paper ballots left to count: 5792 542

As you can see, today was the second straight day that the Registrar of Voters has raised its estimate of the number of VBMRAP ballots — by 15,000 on Saturday and then by another 12,000 today.  Today, they counted 16,380 VBMRAPs, 5,250 paper ballots, and 5,849 provisionals — a total of 27,479.  That’s less than has been completed in previous days, probably because provisionals take longer to count.  But that pace will pick on on Wednesday when the separate teams that have been addressing each type of ballot can (mostly) all focus on provisionals.  (Note: the countdown timer says to expect a report today, but other information suggests that they’re taking the day off.  We’ll see.)

Provisional Ballot

“All right, in THIS case we really WOULD like to see some ID.”

As we’ll see, the addition of provisional and paper ballots into the mix has already had some interesting effects — although not so much on Costa Mesa, so far.  But the effects in Anaheim, Garden Grove, and North County give continued reason to anticipate a positive turn in Costa Mesa.  Of course, it all depends on what precincts within any city, as well as within the county, get tabulated in what order.  I doubt that Costa Mesa saw that many provisionals today — if any.

Let’s get a feel for this new mix of ballots by looking at some places that saw some dramatic developments today.

Garden Grove

Here’s what the Mayor’s race looked like on Sunday:

Completed Precincts: 87 of 87
Vote Count Percentage
BAO NGUYEN 10,546 42.2%
ALBERT AYALA 3,752 15.0%

And here’s what it looks like now:

Completed Precincts: 87 of 87
Vote Count Percentage
BAO NGUYEN 11,082 42.4%
ALBERT AYALA 3,908 15.0%

This wasn’t even that huge of a haul of votes today; it’s their nature that has changed.  Bruce Broadwater picked up 436 votes.  Bao Nguyen picked up 536 votes.  Albert Ayala picked up 156.  Of the total of 1128 votes, Bao got 47.5%, Broadwater got 38.7%, and Ayala got 13,8%.  If this is a taste of what’s left in Garden Grove, Bao is going to be leading in Wednesday and winning in a walkaway.  Is Jay Humphrey going to do as well among provisional voters in Costa Mesa as Bao did today in Garden Grove?  Probably not — but he doesn’t have to in order to win!


This won’t affect anything but bragging rights and the deep burning sense of humiliation that Lucille Kring may be feeling, but all of the sudden Lorri Galloway has pulled into second place in the Mayoral race.  And that tells us something about how provisionals will likely fall.

Here was the score on Sunday:

Completed Precincts: 147 of 147
Vote Count Percentage
* TOM TAIT 20,590 54.3%
LUCILLE KRING 7,448 19.6%
LORRI GALLOWAY 7,218 19.0%


And here’s what it looks like today:

Completed Precincts: 147 of 147
Vote Count Percentage
* TOM TAIT 23,373 53.7%
LORRI GALLOWAY 8,660 19.9%
LUCILLE KRING 8,477 19.5%


So, while Tom Tait picked up 2,783 votes, Kring 1,029 votes, and Denis Fitzgerald 329 — all pretty much in keeping with previous results — Galloway picked up 1,442 votes to move ahead of Kring.  That’s the effect of 5,583 new votes; even if Costa Mesa gets a fifth as many new votes as Anaheim and Jay Humphrey is only half as powerfully preferred to Jim Righeimer among provisional and paper voters as Galloway is to Kring, that would still be enough to put him back in the lead.

We can get a sense of how much of a change this was by looking at each candidate’s share of only those votes that were added today.  Tait drops to 49.8%, Kring drops to 18.4%, Fitz drops to 5.9%, and Galloway rises to 25.8% — an increase of almost 7 points from where she’d been before!  That could be the luck of the draw, which precincts got chosen — but it could be the power of provisionals.  (We’ll have a better idea as we move into the “pure provisionals” days in the next few days.)

Was this effect visible among City Council candidates as well?  Let’s take a look.  This where things stood on Sunday:

CITY OF ANAHEIM Member, City Council
Number To Vote For: 2
Completed Precincts: 147 of 147
Vote Count Percentage
* KRIS MURRAY 13,959 21.2%
JAMES D. VANDERBILT 13,362 20.3%
* GAIL EASTMAN 12,994 19.7%
JOSE F. MORENO (1) 9,113 13.8%
JERRY O’KEEFE 5,375 8.1%
JOSE MORENO (2) 2,307 3.5%

And this is where things stand today:

CITY OF ANAHEIM Member, City Council
Number To Vote For: 2
Completed Precincts: 147 of 147
Vote Count Percentage
* KRIS MURRAY 15,743 20.9%
JAMES D. VANDERBILT 15,106 20.0%
* GAIL EASTMAN 14,837 19.7%
JOSE F. MORENO (1) 10,858 14.4%
JERRY O’KEEFE 6,054 8.0%
JOSE MORENO (2) 2,775 3.7%

One might predict big relative gains by Dr. Jose F. Moreno (1), Donna Acevedo, and even Jose Moreno (2).  Together, the eight candidates received another 9513 votes (remember that each voter gets two votes); I’ll provide not only raw vote totals, but the percentage of today’s vote that each got.  What we see is: Murray gained 1,784 (18.8%), Vanderbilt gained 1744 (18.3%), Eastman gained 1,843 (19.4%), Dr. Moreno gained 1,745 (18.3%), Doug Pettibone gained 815 (8.6%), Jerry O’Keefe gained 679 (7.1%), Donna Acevedo gained 435 (4.6%), and JoJo Moreno gained 468 (4.9%).  Murray and Vanderbilt saw significant declines, Pettibone and O’Keefe moderate ones, Eastman a slight decline, Acevedo a slight increase, JoJo a larger increase, and Dr. Moreno a whopping increase of 4.5%.

Measure J — NOCCCD

As I reported earlier today, most writers seemed to have missed a big close race up in my neck of the woods, where the North Orange County Community College District has a bond measure, Measure J, that has been hovering just below the 55% threshold that it needs to pass.  What happened today?  Let’s start, again, with how things looked on Sunday:

J-North Orange County Community College District, Fullerton/Cypress Colleges Bond Measure
Completed Precincts: 522 of 522
Vote Count Percentage
Bonds – Yes 72,353 54.4%
Bonds – No 60,675 45.6%

As I pointed out, the ball was very much in play, if either it got a larger percentage of provisionals or if a large number of them came in.  Today, something interesting happened.

Vote Count Percentage
Bonds – Yes 78,083 54.7%
Bonds – No 64,565 45.3%

The Yes side got another 5730 votes or 59.6% of today’s tally, and the No side got another 3890 votes, or 40.4%.  That’s a total of 9620 new votes, bringing the grand total to 142,648.  You know how much I hate to quote myself, but if you look over at my post from late last night (scroll down to the discussion of Measure J) you’ll see that I calculated that, to pass with 150,000 total votes cast, it would have to get 82,500 to pass.  This would require picking up votes at a 59.7% pace.  (I also didn’t think that they’d reach 150,000 votes; with the 15,000 new VBMRAP ballots in, that assumption changes.)  So let’s recalculate:  The Yes side would need 4,417 of the 7,352 votes remaining to get exactly 55% of 150,000.  That is 60.08%.  If they can keep at a 59.6% pace, and 151,000 votes come in, then they’d pass the 83050 threshold with 59,47% of the remaining vote.  So, at this pace, another day like today would do the trick with a handful of votes to spare.


We’ll look at one more race before turning back to Costa Mesa: Irvine’s City Council race, where Melissa Fox is hard on the heels of both Jeff Lalloway and Lynn Schott.  Here’s how that race looked on Sunday.

CITY OF IRVINE Member, City Council
Number To Vote For: 2
Completed Precincts: 109 of 109
Vote Count Percentage
* JEFFREY LALLOWAY 15,491 23.0%
LYNN SCHOTT 15,466 22.9%
MELISSA FOX 15,108 22.4%
* LARRY AGRAN 13,181 19.5%
EVAN CHEMERS 8,228 12.2%

And here’s how it looks today:

CITY OF IRVINE Member, City Council
Number To Vote For: 2
Completed Precincts: 109 of 109
Vote Count Percentage
* JEFFREY LALLOWAY 16,078 22.9%
LYNN SCHOTT 16,072 22.9%
MELISSA FOX 15,741 22.4%
* LARRY AGRAN 13,722 19.6%
EVAN CHEMERS 8,571 12.2%

Not a whole lot has happened — and that’s the story.  What we’ve seen elsewhere hasn’t yet hit Irvine.  Lalloway gained 587, Scott gained 606, Fox gained 633, Agran gained 541, and Chemers gained 343, for a total of 2710 new ballots including among the 70,184 votes now counted — less than 4%.  Those numbers show disproportionate gains for the Democrats, but not that much so, and surely not enough.  This looks like the effect of some Democratic-friendly territory getting its VBMRAPs counted rather than provisionals coming in.

If Fox gets the 5% bump that Bao got today from presumed provisional ballots — we won’t even calculate her getting the 7% that Galloway got — how many votes would she need to overcome the Republicans?  If they somehow stayed at their present percentage levels (which they would not — look at Broadwater), then Fox would gain 50 votes per 1000 counted, which means she’s need about 7,000.  If, as likely, one or both of them also drops 5%, then she’s pick up 100 votes per 1000 counted, which means she’d need about 3500 provisionals to pass.  I’d need to look at data that may not even be online to see how many provisionals Irvine usually has in federal elections — my guess is that the number of students means that it gets more than its proportionate share based on population alone — but my guess is that it’s enough for the odds to favor her.

Costa Mesa

Again, here’s Sunday’s standings …

CITY OF COSTA MESA Member, City Council
Number To Vote For: 2
Completed Precincts: 70 of 70
Vote Count Percentage
KATRINA FOLEY 8,502 26.5%
* JIM RIGHEIMER 6,878 21.4%
JAY HUMPHREY 6,855 21.3%
LEE RAMOS 4,826 15.0%
AL MELONE 1,304 4.1%

… and here were today’s:

CITY OF COSTA MESA Member, City Council
Number To Vote For: 2
Completed Precincts: 70 of 70
Vote Count Percentage
KATRINA FOLEY 8,933 26.5%
* JIM RIGHEIMER 7,218 21.4%
JAY HUMPHREY 7,183 21.3%
LEE RAMOS 5,071 15.0%
AL MELONE 1,390 4.1%

Again, this just doesn’t look like provisionals have been strraming into Costa Mesa.  Foley picked up 431 votes, Righeimer 340, Humphrey 328, Ramos 245, Capitelli 83, Melone 86, Stimson 57, and Bunyan 48 — the total of new votes being 1,618.  Among the top four, Foley got 26.6% of the new votes; Righeimer got 21.0%, Humphrey got 20.3%, and Ramos got 15.1%: pretty much a continuation of the status quo.  If one wanted to be very clever about this, one could check to see what precincts hadn’t updated but now have, and how many times and what points in the post-Election Day count, to get an idea of what’s left.  I’m not that fanatical — not yet, anyway — but I’m pretty sure that this is not the surge we were looking for.

If Humphrey is 35 votes back (or 50, or even a handful more) when the surge of provisionals comes, his only worry has to be whether voters understood that he — like Galloway and Moreno and Bao and probably Fox too — was the progressive reformer that such voters wanted.  And my guess is that thanks to people like Costa Mesans for Responsible Government, they will.  Provisional voters are just the sorts who would tend to like a comparison of toilets, like some of these jokers put together.  Even 500 provisionals come in and I think that he passes Righeimer for good.

We probably won’t see votes tabulated on Tuesday, so just relax for a day.  Remember that good things come to those who wait!

About Greg Diamond

Somewhat verbose attorney, semi-retired due to disability, residing in northwest Brea. Occasionally runs for office against bad people who would otherwise go unopposed. Got 45% of the vote against Bob Huff for State Senate in 2012; Josh Newman then won the seat in 2016. In 2014 became the first attorney to challenge OCDA Tony Rackauckas since 2002; Todd Spitzer then won that seat in 2018. Every time he's run against some rotten incumbent, the *next* person to challenge them wins! He's OK with that. Corrupt party hacks hate him. He's OK with that too. He does advise some local campaigns informally and (so far) without compensation. (If that last bit changes, he will declare the interest.)