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Roundup of Mayoral Elections from November 2012

By David W. Burns
December 3, 2012


Coinciding with the Presidential election on November 6, numerous mayoral races took place across the country with a large number of incumbents returning along with some new faces taking over where current mayors did not run for reelection.

In San Diego, Bob Filner, a U.S. Congressman from the 51st District of California, was elected mayor with 51.5 percent of the vote, defeating City Councilman Carl DeMaio. Mayor Jerry Sanders, could not seek reelection due to term limits.

Conference of Mayors Past President Burnsville Mayor Elizabeth B. Kautz won her reelection bid with 57.12 percent of the vote, defeating Jerry Willenburg, a candidate Kautz faced in a hotly contested race in 2008.

Portland (OR) Mayor Sam Adams decided not to run for a second term. Charlie Hales won election over Jefferson Smith, 67 percent to 33 percent.

Honolulu will have a new mayor as well with Kirk Caldwell defeating former Hawaii Governor Ben Cayetano with 53.9 percent of the vote. Current Mayor Peter Carlisle came in third place during the primary in August. Caldwell was the Acting Mayor in 2010, taking over for former Mayor Mufi Hannemann before being defeated by Carlisle during the special election that September.

Also in Hawaii, Conference of Mayors Advisory Board Member Hawaii Mayor William P. Kenoi won reelection by a margin just under 1,500 votes, defeating former Mayor Harry Kim. Other Advisory Board members Hallandale Beach Mayor Joy Cooper, Santa Ana Mayor Miguel Pulido, and West Sacramento Mayor Christopher Cabaldon were also reelected.

The people of North Little Rock have elected Joe Smith as their mayor, succeeding Conference of Mayors Trustee Mayor Patrick Henry Hays, who did not seek reelection after 24 years in office. Smith narrowly defeated Tracy Steele in a runoff on November 27.

In other races involving current leadership members, Conference of Mayors Vice President Mesa Mayor Scott Smith won his race where he ran unopposed and Second Vice President Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson had won his primary with more than 50 percent of the vote back in June, thus did not need to compete in a runoff. Trustee Fresno Mayor Ashley Swearengin also won her primary in June and avoided a runoff as well. Trustee Elizabeth Mayor J. Christian Bollwage ran unopposed.

For a full list of results, visit the website usmayors.org/elections.