New York billionaire George Soros’ efforts to swing California’s criminal justice system in a more progressive direction fell short Tuesday with major defeats in multiple district attorneys races across the Golden State.
As previously reported by The Western Journal, Soros spent more than $2.7 million in California DA races this election cycle.
Among the contests the self-described philanthropist waded into were San Diego County (where he spent $1.5 million), Sacramento Country ($400,000), Alameda ($559,000), and Contra Costa County ($275,000).
The Los Angles Times reported that Soros worked in conjunction with other wealthy donors to back “would-be prosecutors who want to reduce incarceration, crack down on police misconduct and revamp a bail system they contend unfairly imprisons poor people before trial.”
The Soros-supported candidates lost big in San Diego, Sacramento and Alameda counties, while the race is still too close to call in Contra Costa County in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Geneviéve Jones-Wright — Soros’ choice for San Diego County — got 36 percent of the vote while her opponent, Republican District Attorney Summer Stephan, received more than 60 percent, Fox News reported.
In Sacramento County, Republican District Attorney Anne Marie Schubert defeated Noah Phillips by almost a 2-to-1 margin, garnering nearly 65 percent of the vote.
In Alameda Country, located in the Bay Area, incumbent Democrat District Attorney Nancy O’Malley defeated Pamela Price, receiving more than 60 percent of the vote tally.
“Soros’ PAC accused O’Malley during the campaign of implementing ‘racist’ stop-and-frisk policies and Price criticized her for being cozy with law enforcement groups,” according to Fox.
The results in Contra Costa County remain too close to call as incumbent Democrat Diana Becton holds a slight lead over Republican challenger Paul Graves.
With 80,000 mail-in and provisional ballots to be counted, Becton holds a lead of 49.59 percent to 42.06 percent over Graves, the East Bay Times reported Wednesday.
Becton must obtain at least one vote more than 50 percent to avoid a runoff against Graves in November.
Both candidates highlighted that the results remain unclear.
“This was a very tight race and just a few hundred votes will decide whether or not the result is final — and whether or not we will have to keep running to win in November,” Becton said in a Wednesday statement.
In a message to supporters on Facebook, Graves wrote, “A heartfelt thanks to all of you for the outpouring of support you showed last night and throughout the past several months. The registrar is still counting votes and we are still in position for a November runoff.”
Whitney Tymas, the strategist who directed Soros’ efforts in the DA races, told the Los Angeles Times, “California reminds us that this is hard work.”
“Across jurisdictions, prosecutor candidates are no longer competing to be toughest on crime, but smartest on crime,” she added. “The work continues.”
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