Update: The official outcome of the race for Santa Clara County District Attorney is still pending, according to the County Registrar’s office, which says a victor cannot be declared until all mail-in ballots have been counted.
As of 4pm Wednesday, about 77,000 provisional and mailed ballots remain to be counted. As of the latest count, Deputy District Attorney Jeff Rosen is maintaining a 1,724 vote lead, 493 less than the 2,217-vote lead he held early Wednesday morning. Rosen campaign manager Sarah McDermott says that in order to overcome that lead, Dolores Carr will need more than 52 percent of the remaining ballots to go her way. The registrar’s office says that a final result may not be ready until Friday.
Challenger Jeff Rosen defeated District Attorney Dolores Carr Tuesday in an upset victory by a previously unknown 15-year prosecutor.
Totals released by the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters at 2:03am Wednesday morning showed Rosen ahead by 2217 votes, a lead of 1.2 percent, with all 1,177 precincts counted.
Rosen celebrated at the Agenda restaurant in downtown San Jose’s SoFA district as his narrow lead increased through the night.
Carr, the county’s first female district attorney and a former judge, was elected in 2006 following the retirement of George Kennedy after 16 years. Her tenure was beset by accusations of conflicts of interest and judgment errors that critics in her office and in the news media were quick to point out. One week before the election, reports surfaced that Carr’s office asked the county crime lab to halt testing of physical evidence in the De Anza rape case.
Rosen waged an aggressive campaign that focused at first on Carr’s missteps and made ethics a theme of his campaign. A seasoned prosecutor of high-profile homicides, he offered no management credentials. However, as he racked up high-profile endorsements from ex-DA Kennedy and Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren, as well as a number of prosecutors who work under Carr, Rosen seemed to take on the patina of someone who could lead. He articulated a vision of tough but fair justice in television commercials and secured the endorsements of community newspapers in Palo Alto, Morgan Hill and Gilroy, as well as of the countywide Mercury News daily and the Metro weekly.
Rosen is the first candidate to successfully challenge an incumbent DA in almost a century.
With 1,177 of 1,177 precints counted.
Jeff Rosen 91,837 (50.61%)
Dolores Carr 89,620 (49.39%)