Nov. 9 Benicia election UPDATE: Macenski increases Council lead by 2, margin now 97 votes

By Roger Straw, November 9, 2020, 6:00pm

Trevor Macenski maintains lead for second seat on Benicia City Council – leads Terry Scott by 97 votes

Solano County updated its election results at 4:49pm tonight, with no changes in yesterday’s rankings.  Unofficial results today give Trevor Macenski a lead of 97 votes over Terry Scott, strengthening his hopes for gaining the second seat on Council.  Note that the counting isn’t over yet in this close race.

Outstanding votes as of Monday Nov. 9, 5pm

Solano County’s election result is still unofficial.  As of 5pm on Mon. Nov. 9, the County reports an estimate of 500-1,000 additional County-wide vote-by-mail ballots to be processed, and 2,000-4,000 additional provisional ballots to be processed.  Benicia’s share of those 2,500-5,000 ballots has not been reported and remains unknown.  However, Benicia’s population is 7% of Solano population, and our voter turnout percentage of 85% is higher than countywide 78% – so we might count for 8% of the remaining ballots, or 200-400 votes, enough to alter the vote for second seat on Council.  The County will update its results at close of business on Tuesday Nov. 10, and I will report here on any significant changes in outcome.

Benicia races for Mayor and City Council – winners and losers…
Details and analysis…
  • UPDATE: 17,341 Benicia ballots were received, 85.0% of 20,393 registered voters.  Wow!
  • MAYOR results as of Fri. Nov 6, 5pm:
    Candidate Name Total Votes Percentage
    8,467 50.96%
    5,145 30.96%
    3,004 18.08%
  • Steve Young continues with an insurmountable lead, winning vote-by-mail by a huge margin of 53% to Christina Strawbridge’s 31% and Jason Diavatis’ 16%.
  • Jason Diavatis won election-day voting with 36%, then Young at 34% and Strawbridge at 30%.
  • There were relatively few election-day votes, 1,746, compared to a whopping 14,866 vote-by-mail ballots as of tonight’s report.  Thus Steve Young’s substantial overall margin of 20 points.
  • CITY COUNCIL results as of Fri. Nov. 6, 5pm:
    8,529 36.58%
    7,442 31.92%
    7,345 31.50%
  • Tom Campbell won re-election to City Council with the highest vote total among candidates and a margin now in excess of 1,000 votes.  By tradition, as top vote-getter, Campbell will be named Benicia’s Vice Mayor, replacing Christina Strawbridge in that role.
  • In an extremely tight race, Trevor Macenski leads Terry Scott for second place, which, if held, would gain him the second seat on City Council.  Scott led by 135 votes in election-day voting, but trails Macenski by 230 votes in vote-by-mail.  Provisional ballots reported today went 3 for Macenski, 1 for Scott.  Macenski’s narrow overall margin of 97 votes tonight is subject to counting of more mail-in ballots and provisional ballots.  Stay tuned!
Cannabis results:

8,537 51.62%
8,002 48.38%

Those voting YES gained a bit, winning 18 additional vote-by-mail ballots, now by a margin of 657 votes.  Provisional ballots went 3 YES, 2 NO.  Those voting NO took the election-day voting by a margin of 123 votes.  Mail-in voting far outnumbered election-day voting.  Voters cast 14,769 mail-in votes and only 1,765 election-day votes.  I expect that today’s (unofficial) margin of 535 votes is likely to hold as the County counts additional mail-in ballots and provisional ballots.