Politics, government and public life for Southern California

Challenge kicks off Perez-requested recount in state Controller race

Richard Rios

Sharon McNary/KPCC

Richard Rios, an attorney with the Betty Yee campaign for state controller, reviews a ballot being recounted by hand at the Kern County Registrar of Voters office July 11, 2014.

Kern County Registrar of Voters

Sharon McNary/KPCC

A recount of votes in the state Controller's primary race begins in Bakersfield at the Kern County Regsitrar of Voters office

Kern County administration building

Sharon McNary/KPCC

The recount of votes in the state Controller's June 3 primary election began here, July 11, 2014, at the Kern County Registrar of Voters office

Kern County ballot box

Sharon McNary/KPCC

Votes in the state controller's primary race that are challenged by advocates for former Assembly Speaker John Perez or Board of Equalization member Betty Yee in a recount are stored here until the challenge is reviewed by the Kern County Registrar of Voters.

Shanta Lennon assists recount in Kern County

Sharon McNary/KPCC

Shanta Lennon normally works as an accountant in a Kern County office, but on July 11, 2014, she is assigned to sort ballots in advance of a recount at the Registrar of Voters. The controller's race ballots are being recounted.

Kern County Chief Deputy Registrar Karen Rhea

Sharon McNary/KPCC

Karen Rhea, chief deputy registrar for Kern County, oversees the recount of votes in the state Controller's race.

Karen Rhea, chief deputy registrar of voters, Kern County

Sharon McNary/KPCC

Karen Rhea, chief deputy registrar for Kern County, reviews recount procedures with Stephen Kaufman representing the Perez campaign, left, and Richard Rios of the Yee campaign.

Kern County ballot

Sharon McNary/KPCC

This is a stack of ballots being recounted July 11, 2014, in the Kern County Registrar of Voters office.


A  recount of ballots requested by John Perez, the third-place finisher in the state Controller's primary race, began Friday in Kern and Imperial counties.

Based on the first day's counting in the Kern County seat of Bakersfield, the recount could move at a glacial pace, frequently stalled by questions and challenges from lawyers and observers working on behalf of former Assembly Speaker Perez and his opponent Betty Yee.

She placed second in the controller's primary by 481 votes and if she retains that position after the recount, she would face Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin, a Republican, in the November general election.

Related: 8 reasons to care about the recount in the state controller's race

Before the first full Kern County precinct was counted,  Yee's lawyer challenged  a Perez vote.

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Maven's Morning Coffee: Extending the Metro Gold Line, reforming the state Legislature, protecting voting rights for disabled adults

California Budget

Rich Pedroncelli/AP

Historian DJ Waldie writes that Sacramento lawmakers are not serious about tackling ethics and good government reforms in the Legislature.

Good morning, readers. Welcome to the Maven's Morning Coffee -- a listing of the important headlines, news conferences, votes and announcements you need to know to fuel up and tackle your day.

The Maven's Morning Coffee is also available as a daily email. Click here to subscribe.

Today is Friday, July 11, and here is what's happening in Southern California politics:

Headlines

The Washington Post caught up with Mayor Eric Garcetti to talk about his first year in office. On his back to basics approach, the mayor said, "Well, it’s been tagged as low-key. I don’t believe it is. And I kind of dispel the narrative because it’s really actually quite wide-bandwidth and it’s quite fundamental and it’s been neglected."

Mayor Eric Garcetti, who also chairs Metro, supports extending the Metro Gold Line from Azusa to Claremont, according to the San Gabriel Valley Tribune. "I can’t do well for my city if I don’t have support all the way to the eastern border (of the county) and vice versa," Garcetti said.

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Maven's Morning Coffee: Strike at the ports, fight over DWP nonprofit groups, reforming the Sheriff's Department

Maya Sugarman/KPCC

KPCC considers what strikes at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach could mean for consumers.

Good morning, readers. Welcome to the Maven's Morning Coffee -- a listing of the important headlines, news conferences, votes and announcements you need to know to fuel up and tackle your day.

The Maven's Morning Coffee is also available as a daily email. Click here to subscribe.

Today is Thursday, July 10, and here is what's happening in Southern California politics:

Headlines

KPCC considers what labor strikes at the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach mean to consumers. "If the strike were to last for three weeks or more ... consumers might begin to see some store shelves empty out, particularly of goods imported from Asia," per the station.

City Attorney Mike Feuer wants a court-appointed receiver to run two nonprofits overseen by the Department of Water and Power and its union, reports KPCC. At the same time, Controller Ron Galperin says he cannot "in good conscience" make scheduled payments to the groups because IBEW Local 18's trustees have not make their records available for an audit.

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8 reasons to care about the recount in the state controller's race

Election Pano

Maya Sugarman/KPCC

Voters cast their ballots at Canyon Springs School's library on Tuesday evening, June 3 in Santa Clarita during Los Angeles County's primary election.

The recount in the race for state controller is scheduled to begin Friday, July 11, but even if you have no idea who John Perez or Betty Yee are, and you don't give a fig about who becomes state controller, you're still about to see a fascinating drama unfold.

To recap: John Perez is trying to gain enough votes to overtake Betty Yee for the second spot on the November ballot. And here's why you should care about this recount:

1. It's an exceptionally close election

Former Assembly Speaker John Perez placed third. Only the top two candidates get to be on the November general election ballot. He missed that spot by just 481 votes out of more than 4 million cast. That's a difference of one hundredth of one percent.

Perez hopes to overtake fellow  Democrat Betty Yee, a member of the state Board of Equalization, who placed second. Whoever comes out ahead after the recount would face primary winner Ashley Swearengin, the republican Mayor of Fresno.

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Maven's Morning Coffee: Testimony in Richard Alarcon trial, possible closure of Santa Monica Airport, support for port truck drivers

Councilman Probe

Nick Ut/AP

Former Controller Wendy Greuel and Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra testified in the perjury and voter fraud trial of former L.A. City Councilman Richard Alarcon Tuesday.

Good morning, readers. Welcome to the Maven's Morning Coffee -- a listing of the important headlines, news conferences, votes and announcements you need to know to fuel up and tackle your day.

The Maven's Morning Coffee is also available as a daily email. Click here to subscribe.

Today is Wednesday, July 9, and here is what's happening in Southern California politics:

Headlines

Former Controller Wendy Greuel and Assemblyman Raul Bocanegra testified in the voter fraud and perjury trial of former L.A. City Councilman Richard Alarcon."Greuel testified that when she was on the City Council in 2007, Alarcon asked 'if I would consider moving the boundaries to include his fiance's house'," per the Los Angeles Times.

Supervisorial candidate Sheila Kuehl says former opponent John Duran's endorsement of opponent Bobby Shriver is "disloyal to the LGBT community," reports KPCC. Duran, a longtime gay rights activist, told the station, "I did not want to make my decision based on sexual orientation."

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