Silicon Valley representative Eshoo demands transparency in the count

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Like the rest of the country, Congresswoman Anna Eshoo watched in amazement as two candidates tied in a heated race to replace her, triggering a request from a Silicon Valley political operative to fund a six-figure recount.

The veteran legislator asks for transparency about who finances this recount: a process It is expected to cost more than $400,000. between two counties.

“Who’s really paying for this and under what auspices?” Eshoo told San José Spotlight: “Voters in my Congressional district deserve to know this, just as I have always been required to disclose amounts of money and from whom.”

The race for the 16th Congressional District took a surprising turn when Assemblyman Evan Low and Supervisor Joe Simitian, two veteran Silicon Valley politicians, got exactly the same number of votes in the primary elections on March 5. That result means both candidates will appear on the November ballot alongside the top vote-getter, former San Jose Mayor Sam Liccardo.

Having three candidates on the general election ballot instead of two is extraordinary in Silicon Valley and presents a disadvantage to Liccardo by forcing him to split votes between two other contenders.

While Liccardo’s campaign has remained silent about the tie, the former mayor jokingly posted on social media that it was “a good time to buy a lottery ticket” in the Congressional district. But Liccardo loyalists could be trying to change his unfortunate outcome.

Liccardo’s campaign raised the most money in the primary election with $2,206,228 through February 14. Simitian raised $1,008,735 and Low raised $1,369,552 during the same period.

Jonathan Padilla, one of Liccardo’s longtime supporters, filed a request to count the votes by hand hours before Tuesday’s deadline.

That process is expected to take 10 days and cost $320,000 in Santa Clara County. It will cost approximately $85,000 in San Mateo County.

Padilla, a veteran Silicon Valley politician, previously worked for former San Jose District 4 Councilman Manh Nguyen, who also demanded a recount when he narrowly lost reelection in 2016. Padilla worked on Liccardo’s 2014 mayoral campaign. .

Padilla did not respond to questions about who is funding the nearly half-million-dollar recount, which is expected to begin Monday.

Dan Stegink, a former candidate for San Mateo County supervisor, also requested a recount in San Mateo County. Stegink reportedly asked the county to fund part of the effort, which is not typical.

A recount could change the outcome of the closely watched race. Simitian and Low earned exactly 30,249 votes in a race with more than 182,000 votes cast. Any miscounted votes in favor of one candidate will remove the other from the November ballot, giving Liccardo the advantage of facing only one rival in November.

eshoowho publicly endorsed by SimicianoHe said voters in his constituency deserve to know the truth.

“The gentlemen behind this should be absolutely frank about it,” Eshoo said Wednesday.

Elected officials and candidates must publicly disclose their donors regularly, Eshoo added, and the financial forces behind the costly recount effort must be held to the same standard.

“There should be complete transparency about who pays for it,” he said. “Where does the money come from and from whom? “The voters in my district deserve to know that.”

Contact Ramona Giwargis at [email protected] or follow @RamonaGiwargis on X, formerly known as Twitter.

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