3 out of 8 Fil-Am bets in California win seats
MANILA, Philippines - Out of 8 Filipino-Americans who ran for electoral positions in the state of California, 3 candidates, all of them incumbents, managed to garner the majority vote on Tuesday, November 7.
Incumbent Alameda Vice Mayor Rob Bonta clinched a seat in the State Assembly with 50,028 votes or 50.8% of the total number of votes in a close race against opponent Abel Guillen.
Other Fil-Ams who made a bid for legislative seats were not as lucky. Christopher Mateo (12th District) received 42,034 votes or 38.6% while Jennifer Ong (20th District) obtained 44, 016 votes or 48.7%.
In the City of Milpitas, incumbent mayor Jose Esteves was re-elected for the 5th time with 8952 votes or 72.03%, beating challenger Rob Means.
Esteves, a licensed engineer, was born and raised in Dagupan City.
Meanwhile, Garry Barbadillo, who was endorsed by Esteves, lost his bid for a seat in the Milpitas City Council, receiving 3,545 votes or 16.69%.
In Alameda County, three Filipinos vyed for city council seats.
Incumbent council member Jim Navarro was the lone successful candidate, winning a seat in the Union City Council with 8558 votes or 66.99%, defeating Jose Estrella.
Navarro, an engineer by profession, has been a member of the city council since 2004.
Hermy Almonte (San Leandro City Council) and Stewart Chen (Alameda City Council) both lost, with 6516 votes or 43.98% and 5640 votes or 16.92% respectively.
President Barack Obama won a second term on Wednesday (Manila time), beating Republican rival Gov Mitt Romney.
Immigrants largely went for Obama in this race.
There are 3.4 million Filipino-Americans. The registered Fil-Am voters -- about 700,000 -- only comprise 17.5% of the population.
California, where 43% of Fil-Ams are located, is a solid Democratic state. Except for Texas (4%), a CNN map shows the other states populated by Filipino-Americans are solid Democratic states - Hawaii (10%), Illinois (4.1%), and Washington (4%). -Rappler.com