Election 2022: McOsker has large lead in LA Council District 15 race, per semi-official results

Tim McOsker had a commanding lead over Danielle Sandoval in the race for District 15 on the Los Angeles City Council after the Los Angeles County registrar released semi-official results from the 2022 statewide general election shortly before 4 a.m. Wednesday, Nov. 9.

McOsker had 64.83% support compared to Sandoval’s 35.17%, in early returns,  according to the registrar — a gap of about 7,000 votes.

It’s unclear how many ballots are outstanding in the race. The registrar will provide its next update on Friday, Nov. 11.

The winner will succeed outgoing Councilman Joe Buscaino.

McOsker, 60, had been deemed by many as the insider choice. He has a long history of serving in key positions within San Pedro and Los Angeles in general. An attorney with deep family roots in San Pedro, McOsker was chief of staff for Mayor James Hahn in the late 1990s, as well as deputy city attorney. He also served as a contract attorney for many smaller cities. Most recently, he was CEO for AltaSea, a post he relinquished in December so he could run for council.

See the latest election results.

“I want to extend my deepest thanks and gratitude to our supporters who put in the work to knock on doors and get out the vote across the 15th district,” McOsker said in a written statement shortly after the initial results were released on Tuesday evening.

“This is their campaign and their movement.,” he added. “While these results are encouraging, it’s not over until every vote has been counted. We look forward to watching the rest of the results come in like everyone else.”

Sandoval, 46, drew support from those seeking an alternative. If elected, she would be the first Latina representative for a district that is now largely Latino. She has served in neighborhood councils and worked with the Los Angeles Homeless Services Authority, Meals on Wheels, the City Lights Gateway Foundation and the environmental advocacy organization Tree People.

“It is going to be a long night but I am optimistic about the results. I am proud of the campaign I ran, residents expressed they wanted change,” Sandoval said in a written statement following the initial results. “We will see as the night progresses if they voted for change and for new ideas, new leadership not part of the status quo.”

Both McOsker and Sandoval carried out vigorous campaigns to represent the district, which also takes in the Port of Los Angeles.

McOsker, who said during the campaign that his decades of community involvement gave him widespread support, stressed addressing physical and mental health needs for those who are homeless with both housing and wrap-around services.

He also campaigned on public safety, saying there is a need to rebuild the LAPD and institute more afterschool programs.

Sandoval, meanwhile, advocated for programs to help renters with security deposits as part of an overall solution to homelessness. She also supports expanding both housing and mental health programs.

District 15 is the key government post for those living in the port area and the strip along the 110 Freeway that connects the area to downtown Los Angeles.

Historically, it has been a San Pedro resident who represents the area. Candidates from Wilmington, Harbor City, Harbor Gateway and Watts have been unable, typically, to garner the financing, political clout and votes to overcome that tradition.

Before term limits were instituted, John S. Gibson Jr. of San Pedro served 30 years as the area’s representative.

Other past incumbents have included Joan Milke Flores, Rudy Svorinich, Jr. and now-Supervisor Janice Hahn, all San Pedro residents who were reelected to followup terms. Currently, councilmembers can serve up to three four-year terms.

Primarily known as a working-class area with a colorful ethnic mix — including strong Croatian, Italian, Greek and Mexican American communities — San Pedro has evolved over the last couple of decades, with upscale projects catapulting its population numbers. A new waterfront development, West Harbor, will break ground on Saturday, Nov. 12.

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While commercial fishing once dominated the local economy, San Pedro is now home to a growing number of tech industry and environment-related employers and workers.

Midrise residential developments are quickly changing the skyline in the community’s still quaint downtown shopping district. And while charming Spanish, craftsman and Victorian homes dot its hillside, more multistory residences are quickly going up.

The area’s council representative serves as the key linchpin, advocating for the area and its many interests before L.A.’s seat of power in City Hall.

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