A winner in the SLO County District 2 race unlikely before November

June 18, 2022

Supervisor Bruce Gibson


San Luis Obispo County Supervisor Bruce Gibson fell below the required votes to win the District 2 supervisor seat in the primary election during Friday’s count. It is now likely that the two top candidates will compete in the Nov. 8 midterm election.

At stake is control over the five member board of supervisors, which is currently held by a three person Republican majority.

Gibson, a Democrat, faced three Republican challengers in June: Dr. Bruce Jones, Geoff Auslen and John Whitworth. If the late votes remain consistent, Gibson and Jones will battle it out in November.

In order to win during the primary election, a candidate is required to have 50% of the votes plus one.

Dr. Bruce Jones

The San Luis Obispo County Clerk-Recorder’s Office tallied 10,328 ballots on Friday, which did not change the leaders in any local races.

With about 27% of ballots uncounted, it is still too early to call most San Luis Obispo County races. The clerk-recorder’s office has counted 63,898 ballots, while 24,400 remain uncounted.

Local election results as of Friday afternoon:

SLO County District 2 Supervisor

  • Bruce Gibson – 50%
  • Bruce Jones – 18.28%
  • Geoff Auslen – 17.07%
  • John Whitworth – 14.65%

SLO County District 3 Supervisor

  • Dawn Ortiz-Legg – 65.08%
  • Stacy Korsgaden – 31.67%
  • Arnold Ruiz – 3.25%

SLO County District 4 Supervisor

  • Jimmy Paulding – 55.98%
  • Lynn Compton – 44.02%

SLO County Clerk Recorder

  • Elaina Cano – 64.95%
  • James Baugh – 19.69%
  • Stew Jenkins – 15.36%

SLO County Superior Court Judge # 12

  • Mike Frye – 66.78%
  • Paul Phillips – 33.22%

Oceano fire tax (2/3 needed to pass)

  • Yes – 58.45%
  • No – 41.55%

County staff plans to continue counting votes on Wednesday morning. CalCoastNews will provide election updates on Wednesday afternoon.

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When looking at the map for District 2, I wonder if there will every be a winner? North to Ragged Point, South to the top of the Cuesta Grade traverses a diversity of interests and infrastructure needs. Sadly our budget goes to needs of the Central Coast Adult Disneyland we call Tourism, at an expense to the local residents, known a differed maintenance.

Would suggest the new Board of Supervisors tack to a middle problem solving course, starting with water supply-climate resiliency, department by department frugality. Try to avoid silly partisanship.

I love this news. A few may have jumped the gun in saying it was over on election night. How does that crow taste?

Probably as good as the crow being eaten by those who pushed through a gerrymandered district map that resulted in them getting voted out.

much as i don’t get why it takes so long, the only race that can’t be called is District 2, the rest seem to be pretty settled.

Auslen is no more a Republican than Adam Hill, he is in fact just like Adam Hill in his motivation to become a county supervisor, was Adam Hill’s buddy, and behaves just like Adam Hill. I never thought I would ever support Bruce Gibson but Auslen has changed that thinking among many conservative voters. Hopefully it’s Jones, who I will support and prefer over Gibson.

Your thought is Auslen is more like Hill than Gibson?, it always seemed Hill and Gibson were joined at the hip.

Hill and Gibson shared some general political philosophy. Hill and Auslen, and Tom Jones, are the ones joined at the hip. While I somewhat dislike Gibson politically, I hate Auslen personally and can get quite specific on why. If it’s Gibson/Auslen a lot of us can choke on a little vomit and tolerate Gibson.

Yes, Auslen is a Democrat and long-time personal friend of Adam Hill. They are so much alike in so many ways.

For the entire time Hill and Gibson were on the BOS I can’t think of a single vote that they differed on, certainly seems they were in lock step.

Supervisor is a non-partisan position. Who cares which of the dysfunctional political parties a candidate supposedly pledges fealty to? That is no guarantee that they will act the way you want.

Karen most likely has the correct updated number of ballots left to count at 24k, but 34k unprocessed ballots were listed yesterday 6/17/22 at 4:22pm on the CA Sec of State Elections canvassing site… https://admin.cdn.sos.ca.gov/ccrov/2022/june/unprocessed-ballots-report.pdf … Whichever is correct, your newly elected County Clerk is a dismal failure. The amount of unprocessed ballots makes SLO County come in 50th out of 58 counties. Except for Placer and Sonoma counties the other worst performers are huge population counties like LA and Sacramento. If you grade on a curve that’s a D. County Clerks are allowed to start counting mail-in ballots 7 days before the election as long as they don’t post any results before election night precinct closings. Did any early counting occur?

A highly functioning organization would have known the amount of time to count the expected ballots. Because they would have had a table-top exercise before the ballots were sent out. After morning donuts and a fancy PowerPoint presentation the table-top exercise would have simulated mechanical and electronic failures, employed some interventions on the sample of ballots processed and determined the number of days to process ballots before having a nice catered lunch. A ballpark or range of number of days would have been communicated to the press and public which did not occur. They would have had a contingency plan for backup personnel waiting in the wings in case there was a COVID sick-out component.

This whole haphazard vote counting/processing fiasco in SLO needs a full human failure (HFACS) investigation to determine the organizational failures as compared to other counties and the needed interventions to prevent it from occurring in the future.

The problem is that it is not a purely actuarial process, like the woman who does my taxes. Lots of stops and starts, much unneeded direction from, and communication with, managers. Just count the damn ballots.

If you think your vote doesn’t make a difference look at district 2 sitting at 50% a couple votes could determine whether there will be a runoff in November or not. I sure hope so.