It looks as if Santa Monica Mayor Richard Bloom is safe in assuming he'll sworn into office in Sacramento Monday as the Westside's new assemblyman. Friday's updated ballot count indicates that he's retained and expanded his lead over Assemblywoman Betsy Butler.
With more than 183,000 votes cast in the 50th Assembly District race, Bloom led Butler by 1,536 votes. His lead had been a razor-thin 79 votes a few weeks ago. The district includes Santa Monica, Malibu, West Hollywood, Beverly Hills and Agoura Hills.
Bloom posted a message on Twitter Friday that his lead appeared to be insurmountable and that he would join other legislators-elect to be sworn in at the state Capitol on Monday.
The outcome of the Bloom-Butler race has taken weeks to determine because so many of the votes cast in Los Angeles County were submitted as labor-intensive mail-in and provisional ballots that need to be verified before they can be counted.
About 30,000 more mail-in and provisional ballots remained to be counted in all races across Los Angeles County, with the final update set for Sunday, says a statement from the Registrar-Recorder's office.