Analysis: Quietest Council Election Limps to a Conclusion

Davis City Hall with an old style bicycle statue out front

By David M. Greenwald
Executive Editor

Davis, CA – Even before the string of tragic stabbings the Special Election for District 3 was among the quietest elections in recent years.  Perhaps it was the fact that 80 percent of the city did not participate in the voting.  Perhaps it was the civil and respectful tone by the candidates throughout the election.

With the recent tragedies, the candidates have not put out a single statement.  We heard from one of the candidates who will put something out after the result is certified.

Yesterday the Yolo County Elections Office put out the second post-Election Day tally.

They expect the next one on Monday, May 15, with the certification occurring on May 17.

This election is unique in another way—because this was an all-mail ballot, we really don’t know how many more ballots will come in.  The way it works is that all of the ballots received before 5 pm on Election Day were counted on Election Night.  The first update on Thursday of last week were of those received by 8 pm on Election Day.

Anything arriving after Election Day, must be postmarked by May 2 in order to count.  The ones received by Friday at 5 pm were included in the latest batch.  And next week’s tally should basically conclude the canvas.

How many are we looking at?  We don’t know.

But this should give us a clue.

A few clear trends are evident by looking at the releases.

First, Donna Neville jumped out to an immediate solid lead of 61-39, and around a 450-vote lead.

Second, in each release the margin of her advantage has shrunk.  But she has also gained vote margin each time.  So the third release was almost dead even with a 43-39 margin (52.4 percent of the vote) compared with over 61 percent.

Third, the overall lead for Neville has increased in total votes to 495.

Fourth, and perhaps most importantly, the number of votes in the tally has drastically declined.  Just 82 ballots were received between Election Day and May 5.

The total number of votes in the election is still under 2500.

About The Author

David Greenwald is the founder, editor, and executive director of the Davis Vanguard. He founded the Vanguard in 2006. David Greenwald moved to Davis in 1996 to attend Graduate School at UC Davis in Political Science. He lives in South Davis with his wife Cecilia Escamilla Greenwald and three children.

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