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Low turnout prompts talk of shifting L.A. election schedule

Los Angeles City Council President Herb Wesson. Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times

Alarmed by poor turnout in this week's election, Los Angeles City Council President Herb Wesson suggested Wednesday that city leaders look at scheduling city elections so that they coincide with state electoral contests. 

Turnout was just above 16%, according to the unofficial results released by the city clerk’s election division. Wesson called that number “awful” and “embarrassing” and said it should send a message to the city’s elected officials -- as well as to the voters themselves.  

“We need to look at maybe consolidating our elections with the state,” Wesson told his colleagues at Wednesday's council meeting. “We have to bring those turnout numbers … higher.” 

INTERACTIVE MAP: How your neighborhood voted

Wesson pushed for passage of Proposition A, the half-cent sales tax hike that would have generated $200 million to help balance the budget. The measure was rejected by 55% of voters. 

Wesson said he thought those who turned out were more politically conservative and that there were “maybe some angry folks as well.” 


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--David Zahniser and Jessica Garrison at Los Angeles City Hall

Photo: Los Angeles City Council President Herb Wesson. Credit: Francine Orr / Los Angeles Times 

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