Video: Steve Cooley Prematurely Declares Victory Last Night

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This article is more than 9 years old.

Really not sure what was going on in the collective heads of the Steve Cooley for Attorney General campaign last night, but he declared victory in a long speech around 11 p.m. Right now, with 99% of precincts reporting, his opponent, Kamala Harris, is ahead by about 22,000 votes.

The Cooley video is below this summary from KQED reporter Gretchen Weber. His speech starts around 3:30.

As of right now (11:51am), the race for California Attorney General is still up in the air. With 99.2%of precincts reporting, San Francisco DA democrat Kamala Harris has 46% of the votes, while republican Steve Cooley (Los Angeles DA) has 45.7%, a difference of about 22,000 votes. According to the Secretary of State’s office, final results are still pending from Riverside County, which has reported just 87.2% of precincts.

Steve Cooley held a narrow lead for much of the night on Tuesday, but that lead narrowed as the hours wore on, and then flipped this morning as ballots from Alameda and Los Angeles Counties came in. In Los Angeles County, Cooley lost to Harris by 14.5%, or 258,685 votes.

Cooley declared victory last night around 11pm, while at the same time Harris rallied her supporters, saying that everyone knew it would be a long night, but she believed democrats would be victorious. This morning, it looks as though she may be right.

The attorney general race was expected to be one of the tightest statewide races in this election. The last Field poll found Cooley ahead of Harris by just one point. The candidates have stood in stark contrast to one another, with Cooley representing as a traditional, tough-on-crime law enforcement official, and Harris cultivating her reputation as an innovator who is willing to try new strategies to reform the criminal justice system. On the issues, the two couldn’t be more different, including some of California’s most controversial ones: Proposition 8, California’s global warming legislation, and the death penalty.

It’s possible that this election will come down to absentee and provisional ballots. Counties have until the end of the month to report those results to the Secretary of State’s office.