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Bell election: Voters recall embattled council members and elect new representatives

Bell residents voted overwhelmingly to recall four embattled council members Tuesday with 100% of the votes counted in the small southeast Los Angeles County city.

More than 95% of the city's residents voted to recall council members Teresa Jacobo, Oscar Hernandez and George Mirabal, as well as Councilman Luis Artiga, who resigned but was still on the ballot.

In the race to fill the remaining term of Jacobo, retired baker Danny Harber won with 1,468 votes, or 54.4%, to Coco Ceja's 1,239 votes, according to final election returns.

Attorney Ana Maria Quintana tallied 1,305 votes, or 44%, to fill the remaining term of Artiga. Miguel A. Sanchez, who passed away last week, was in second with 683 votes, or 23% of the total.

In the race to fill three four-year terms on the council, businessman Ali Saleh had received 1,355 votes, followed by Nestor E. Valencia with 1,242 votes and Violeta Alvarez with 1,220 votes, election returns showed.

About 33% of the city's 10,400 registered voters cast ballots in the heated contest.

Jacobo, Hernandez, Mirabal and Artiga are among eight current and former top Bell officials charged in a sweeping corruption probe by Los Angeles county prosecutors. All eight have pleaded not guilty.


Scandal-racked Bell is likely to have an entirely new council lineup

Councilman Parks says his campaign left no stone unturned

Voters in Bell flock to polls at election winds down

-- Robert J. Lopez

Comments () | Archives (4)

After this elections, my concern is what is going to happen to the workers
who were in charge of City Maintenance, and were under the orders of a
Are they going to keep their jobs? Are they going to lose their jobs?

If they can keep their job, I believe is going to be very devastated,
because they did not have nothing to do with this scandal. The sub-contractor,
is the one who got all the money and the workers got a poor salary. They even had to break the cement of the side walks, with their bare hands, because the \
Sub Contractor, Mr. Medina, became very rich, and the workers were in really bad shape.
Please, someone help the workers in the City Maintenance, to keep their jobs.

Interesting to see that racial politics in Bell has come to an end. In a city with a 90% Latino population elected a White man, Lebanese man and 3 very well qualified Latinos. I expect heated and lively disagreements between them, but I am sure that honesty will be returned to City Hall after a 40 year absense.

Any well informed voter - or simply a person who is aware of the realities of politics - will never cast his or her vote solely on the person's race.

I can see a legitimate argument that a "mutual understanding" will help someone lead - but competence must always prevail.

Man, with all the months of scandal, coverage on every radio and TV station, the Internet and the Times, they still can only muster *33%* of the registered voters in Bell to come out???!!!

That means two out of every three registered voters still stayed home and hoped other people would do the right thing.

What would it take to get half or more to come out and vote? Free beer and ice cream?



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