|LA County Registrar - click here|
Long Beach Police Chief Jim McDonnell emerged from Tuesday's election as the overwhelming favorite to be the next sheriff, finishing well out in front in a seven-candidate field.
With most of the ballots counted, McDonnell held 49 percent - narrowly missing the majority needed to win outright. If the results hold up, he will go into a November runoff with former undersheriff Paul Tanaka, who had 15 percent.
McDonnell presented himself as an outsider who had the experience to clean up the scandals that have plagued the department under Sheriff Lee Baca, who was forced to resign in January. That message appeared to resonate with voters.
"They want a fresh start," McDonnell told his supporters at his election night party at the J.W. Marriott Hotel in downtown L.A. "They want the Sheriff's Department to reach its full potential, to put the shine back on the badge again."
|The reason for Paul's party pooping?|
Tanaka barred the media from attending his election night celebration. The Weekly was thrown out of the event, at Cherrystones restaurant in Gardena, within two minutes of arriving.
"It's a private party. What else do we need to explain?" said one Tanaka supporter. "You're trespassing," said another, who identified himself only as a Marine combat veteran.
Ed Chen, Tanaka's campaign manager, said the party was a "very intimate" event, and that Tanaka's supporters were being "protective" of him. Later on, some members of the press were escorted into the restaurant for brief interviews or photos, and then escorted out.
There is no loser quite like a sore loser, I guess.
Last weekend Mountain Views News potentate H. Susan Henderson had given her highly sought after endorsement to Paul Tanaka for Los Angeles County Sheriff. Here is what she had to say:
And rather than this being merely a case of Paul Tanaka staying down with one of his oppressed Sheriff brothers, or him throwing anyone under the bus, it would appear that Henderson's chosen candidate here is as intimately involved in this corruption scandal as any of the deputies currently on trial. Or at least that is what the FBI thinks. This from the Los Angeles Times (link):
Paul Tanaka wasn't surprised to find himself in a room with a group of FBI agents. "I knew this day would come," said Tanaka, then the second-in-command at the Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department. "I hoped it wouldn't."
An FBI agent told him his "name has come up throughout the investigation.... You're a popular guy."
For the next four hours, as part of their investigation into Sheriff's Department corruption, the agents questioned Tanaka on a range of allegations, according to a recording of the November 2012 interview reviewed by The Times. At that time, it appeared that Tanaka's future within the department was dim.
Once considered former Sheriff Lee Baca's heir apparent, Tanaka was facing heavy criticism that he shared responsibility for some of the scandals that have plagued the department. Eventually, Baca forced him out of the department.
Throw in the recent defeat of Measure UUT, which was fiercely supported by both the MVN and those whose causes it endlessly supports, and you can easily see that it really has been a rough couple of years for these folks.
More: Thanks to a reader, we have the Sierra Madre vote for Sheriff
So much for the power of a Mountain Views News endorsement.