GLENDALE—Democrats from across the 43rd Assembly district turned out in large numbers on Sunday and re-elected a slate of Democratic delegates put forth by a community coalition of partners known as Democrats United.
Sunday’s vote was a redo of an election held in January, during which the Democrats United slate of seven male and seven female candidates won. However, after the losing slate challenged the vote, Democratic party officials opted for a re-vote, saying that 16 percent of the ballots were improperly cast.
Voters overwhelmingly chose the Democrats United slate again on Sunday, electing Jordam Del Guercio, Malcolm Johnson, Leonard Manoukian, Steven Whiddon and Garry Willis on the men’s slate and Elen Asatryan, Alin Babaian. Mijin Fernandes, Jamie Garcia, Silva Kechichian and Judith Smith on the women’s slate.
These delegates will join fellow Democrats United delegates Berdj Karapetian and Shant Sahakian, who Democratic Party officials ruled in April had received enough votes that the number of so-called irregular votes would not affect the outcome of their elections. In May, during the Democratic Party Convention, officials also declared Tereza Yerimyan a winner in the January election.
With 580 votes, Karapetian was elected to the executive board of the Assembly Democrats.
The Democrats United slate, which strongly favors the candidacy of Glendale City Clerk Ardy Kassakhian’s bid for the 43rd Assembly seat, received an average of 300 more votes that the Progressive slate, which is seen as allied to State Assemblyman Mike Gatto.
The Armenian National Committee of America-Western Region issued an announcement Sunday evening congratulating the Democrats United slate elections.
“The ANCA Western Region Congratulates the Democrats United Slate of the 43rd Assembly District who won their re-election today as delegates with over a 300 vote margin. The unprecedented turnout out at the election from our community members shows the power of grassroots at work. Thank you for making our collective voice heard through the ballot box. Onward we march,” said the statement.
Earlier this month, the ANCA-WR endorsed Kassakhian for the 43rd Assembly seat.
The revote on Sunday, saw an unprecedented turn out by Armenian-American voters, bringing out around 300 first-time Democratic Party voters. The Democrats United slate saw an uptick of more than 250 votes compared to the elections in January.
There were 845 total ballots cast on Sunday, with 26 general provisional ballots and 25 provisional ballots for the executive board elections. The difference between the lowest winning votes on the female slate was 316 and 337 on the male slate.
The campaign for a re-vote engaged all aspects of the Armenian-American community with activists from local community centers rallying voters to get out the vote on Sunday.