Oakland candidates make final push to be mayor

November 1, 2010 6:46:15 PM PDT
The hottest political contest in the East Bay this election is the race for mayor of Oakland; 10 candidates are vying to succeed outgoing Mayor Ron Dellums but it could be days before voters know whom they have elected.

Even if she had to do it in Spanish, City Councilwoman Jean Quan made her last minute door knocks. Political analyst Joe Tuman sent out final e-mail pushes.

For all those in the running to be Oakland's next mayor, it has been a hard fought campaign.

Former State Sen. Don Perata has even lost his voice.

"Anybody who tells you that they're a frontrunner in this race or that things are locked up is selling you a bill of goods," Tuman said.

In the final few hours, the biggest race in the East Bay ramped up with political signs in storefronts, front yards and even on a movie theater marquis.

In the final few weeks, the race turned ugly.

Mailers from Perata supporters linked Quan, his biggest rival, to the unpopular current mayor. Mailers from Quan's camp implied Perata is beholden to the prison guard union that helped bankroll his campaign.

Another top candidate, Councilwoman Rebecca Kaplan, had mailers trying to separate her from the pack.

Voters lined up for early voting to cast their ballots in person, but more than 60 percent are expected to vote by mail. Those ballots are already being counted in the basement of the Alameda County registrar's office.

Ten candidates and the new ranked choice voting method almost guarantee the results will not be known on Election Night. It could be days, maybe even a week, before Oakland knows who its next mayor is

Voters have a lot of choices and just a few more hours to make up their minds.


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