As of Saturday evening, nearly 4 days after the voting booths have closed, about two-thirds of the ballots cast in the 2018 Election have been counted. According the Registrar of Voters Office, about 355,000 ballots have been counted.
Another 200,000, mail-in and provisional, ballots, are still be counted. Based on the number of registered voters, 34.1 percent of voters cast a ballot, with the uncounted ballots, turnout this year appears to be about 53 percent. In 2014, the last gubernatorial election, county turnout was 40 percent and in the 2016 Presidential election it rose to 75 percent.
In the statewide races for Governor though Attorney General, Riverside County voters are favoring the Republican candidate. However statewide, the Democrats have won all of these races.
While a majority of the counted Riverside County ballots favored Republican John Cox, Gavin Newsom is the next Governor. He is outpolling Cox with nearly 60 percent of the total state vote, a 1.6 million vote lead.
Eleni Kounalakis will be the Lt. Governor. Alex Padilla returns as Secretary of State, Betty Yee as Controller and Xavier Becerra as Attorney General, all have 60 or slightly more of the current ballots counted.
For Insurance Commissioner Democrat Ricardo Lara has a 140,000, vote lead over independent Steve Poizner. And Marshall Tuck, with 50.3 percent of the counted ballots, has a 40,000 vote lead over of Tony Thurmond in the race for Superintendent of Public Instruction.
Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein will be re-elected to her fifth full six-year term, although she was first chosen Senator in the 1992 election, now serving her 28th year. In Riverside County voters favored her Democratic challenger Kevin De Leon, who has outpolled Feinstein by 3,100 votes at this point in the counting.
Statewide, Feinstein has received 54 percent of the counted ballots, which gives her a 630,000 lead.
For the 36 Congressional District, which includes all of the Hill areas, Rep. Dr. Raul Ruiz, with 56.7 percent of the vote, is winning re-election to his fourth term as a member of the U.S. Congress. He is leading Republican challenger Kimberlin Pelzer by 16,000 votes fo the 119,000 counted for this race.
Republican St. Sen. Jeff Stone continues to lead Joy Silver, his Democratic opponent. At this point in the counting, Stone has 53.4 percent (87,200) of the votes, and leads Silver by 11,100.
However, Silver said she is patiently awaiting the conclusion of counting all ballots before acknowledging the final results. As note earlier, the Registrar acknowledges that about 240,000 ballots have not been counted and has not identified which precincts these ballots are from.
In the local Assembly seat, District 71, incumbent Republican Randy Voepel will easily defeat James Elia, his Democratic opponent. Voepel has garnered about 65 percent of Riverside County votes, slightly more than his 62.2 percent in San Diego County, which represents about 90 percent of the District.
In the Riverside County Sheriff’s race, Lt. Chad Bianco has unseated incumbent Sheriff Stan Sniff. With 305,400 ballots counted, Bianco has 40,000 vote lead.
Also there will be two new members on the county Board of Supervisors. Karen Spiegel has a 1,900 vote edge over Eric Linder to replace retiring Supervisor John Tavaglione in the second District. Former Assemblyman Russ Bogh has a 570 vote lead over his opponent Jeff Hewitt in the Fifth District, where Supervisor Marion Ashley is retiring.
In the School District race, four candidates are running for two seats and the incumbents are leading. Rob Davis has 37 percent of the vote and Ross Valenzuela has 24.2 percent. Challenger Adam McQueen has 20.4 percent and trailing in fourth is Jamie Swain.
HUSD”s bond measure — Measure X— in winning with 61 percent approval after 21,000 votes have been counted. For approval it needs 55 percent of the total votes cast.
Fire Commission President Rhonda Andrewson is far ahead of the other three candidates in the race for the Idyllwild Fire Protection District Commission. Three seats are available and there are four candidates.
Besides Andrewson, the other two incumbents, Henry Sawicki and Ralph Hoetger, are ahead of challenger Andy Balendy. Of the nearly 550 ballots, which have been counted, Andrewson was chosen on 486.
Statewide six ballot measures are winning. Three bond measures — veterans’ housing, housing for mental illness and for children’s hospital construction — have more “yes” than “No” votes. But he bond measure for water and environmental projects is being defeated.
The other measures, which voters appear to have approved, are the effort to consider changing the daylight saving time period, AMR’s emergency ambulance employee on-call requirements and farm animal housing.
The repeal of the state gas tax has only received 44.4 percent “Yes” and rent control was defeated more substantially.