I’m not sure Tuesday’s outcome was quite as positive for Assemblyman Michael Allen as my colleague, Jim, suggested in his earlier blog (“A rear-view mirror look at Tuesday’s election“). This is particularly true when considering that Allen had all the top party endorsements, is an incumbent and his campaign — including independent expenditure money — outspent the second-place finisher, Marc Levine, nearly six to one.
Yes, Allen won by a larger margin than in his last primary victory. But he still had a narrow victory and finished second in Marin County to someone who had been something of an unknown outside of San Rafael before this race.
Of all the Sonoma County votes that went to Democrats (not including late absentees, which are still being counted), 57 percent of them went to someone other than Allen. In Marin County, 63 percent went to Democrats other than Allen.
The question for the fall is where are those votes going to go? To say nothing of the 23 percent of the vote in Sonoma County and 20 percent in Marin that went to Republicans.
If the Nov. 6 election offered a traditional runoff featuring the top Republican and top Democrat, Allen no doubt would win. But it’s clear he has his work cut out for him, particularly in wooing Marin County Democrats.
— Paul Gullixson