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Council District 2 Election Goes to Runoff

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The race to fill the City Council seat from District 2 goes to a runoff, with state assembly member Paul Krekorian and former Paramount exec Christine Essel the top contenders, winning over many less prominent candidates with tighter local connections to the Valley seat.

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The Daily News's account of the outcome of the race for the seat, whose district stretches from Studio City to Sunland-Tujunga:

Final returns from Tuesday's election showed Krekorian, D- Burbank, with 4,929 votes, for 34.1 percent, and Essel with 4,101 votes, for 28.39 percent, in a 10-candidate field. Los Angeles school board member Tamar Galatzan came in third with 1,871 votes, for 12.94 percent.

In heading to the runoff, Krekorian and Essel also bested a field of seven comunity and neighborhood activisits who had criticized the two for the amounts of money they had raised and for moving into the district only to run for the City Council seat.

The "Little Seven" identified themselves as grassroots candidates who have been active in the community through neighborhood councils and homeowners associations.

Ron Kaye, who strongly pushed the "Krekorian and Essel as carpetbaggers" theme in his coverage of the race, thinks the voters--and especially the potential voters who didn't vote--should be ashamed, as should local activists who failed to unite. Some reasons why:

the East San Fernando Valley's 270,000 residents decided they want to be represented at City Hall by someone who represents the interests of those who have taken LA hostage. The turnout on Tuesday was even lower than those who cast mail-in ballots, a grand total of less than 12 percent of registered voters.

You can't blame the machine for the outcome....You have seen the enemy, he is us. The seven candidates who actually lived in CD2 before the election was called split just 5,092 votes, while the three carpetbaggers (Krekorian, Essel and Zuma Dogg) got 9,433.

Too many candidates with too little money -- the winners had nearly 90 percent of the cash raised for the campaign -- is the ostensible reason. You can throw in a lot of others like apathy, ignorance, demographics, defeatism to explain why it turned out to be another exercise in LA's Dictatorship of the Few....

the activists of the city -- Neighborhood Councils, homeowner groups and everyone else who make up the city's civic culture...chose up sides in this election and backed their local favorite instead of coming behind a single candidate and building a campaign organization that could man phone banks, walk precincts, leaflet at community events and hold rallies.

They didn't organize and they didn't raise any money. They acted like they lived in a small town where democracy is flourishing instead of in a big city where money and power talk loudly.

The Krekorian/Essel runoff will happen December 8.

Past City of Angles blogging on the CD-2 race.

The image associated with this post was taken by Flickr user Alexbcthompson. It was used under user Creative Commons license.

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