Late ballots break in progressive direction

Dean Preston now leads by 35 votes. Chesa Boudin has picked up enough that if the trend continues with the remaining votes, he will be very close.

The VBM ballots counted today are breaking much more the way the Election-Day votes did: Dean Preston is now 35 votes ahead of Sup. Vallie Brown in D5, and Chesa Boudin is only 879 votes behind interim District Attorney Suzy Loftus.

In fact, Boudin is 3,726 votes ahead of Loftus in the first-place round – a clear signal that a sizable number of San Franciscans want dramatic change in the criminal-justice system.

Volunteers crowded into Dean Preston’s headquarters to do last-minute GOTV.

But under the ranked-choice voting system, Loftus pulls ahead as the second-place votes from two more traditional law-and-order candidates are slightly favoring her.

But the trends are looking good for both progressive candidates.

There are, the Department of Elections says, about 38,000 more votes to count – 25,000 vote-by-mail ballots that were either dropped off on Election Day or have just arrived from the Post Office, and 13,000 provisional ballots. Department of Elections Director John Arntz says that 1,880 of the provisional ballots are from D5.

If you voted by mail (or dropped off a VBM ballot) and want to be sure it was properly processed, you can track your ballot at this link.It’s going to be very, very close, and every single vote is going to count.

If the remaining 25,000 break the same way that these did, it will put Preston further ahead. He picked up 123 votes out of (my guess) about 3,200 counted in D5. (The DOE counted 32,000 votes today. If they were evenly distributed through the districts, that would be 2,900 per district. It’s safe to assume that D5 is running at least 5 percent higher than average; it’s always a high-turnout district and the supes race may push it further.) That exact trend would give Preston another 88-vote advantage when the remaining VBM votes are counted.

We have no idea what will happen with the provisionals.

Here’s the (very, very sketchy) math for the DA’s race. Over the 32,000 ballots counted today, Boudin picked up 1,326 votes. If that exact trend continues over the next 25,000 votes, he would pick up 1,035 more – enough to put him ahead by 156 votes. Not counting the provisionals.

These margins are so tiny, and the trends so unpredictable, that my numbers are by no means reliable.

But the direction of the votes so far is positive for the progressive candidates.