VIDEO: Ballots still being counted

Todd Gloria holds a lead in the race for mayor of San Diego


Vicky Pineda

The San Diego Registrar of Voters office is the headquarters for elections in the region. Photo by Vicky Pineda/City Times

Vicky Pineda, Editor-in-Chief

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the entire 2020 election model had to be changed months before Nov. 3.

But even with all the changes, Cynthia Paes, San Diego County’s Assistant Registrar of Voters, said that Election Day, and night, went by smoothly.

“If you were in line by 8 p.m. that means you get to vote, so they were serving voters up to about 9 or 9:30,” Paes said. “It took a little time to get those polls back (to the Registrar of Voters) so we can start scanning the poll ballots.”

The latest from Paes is featured on this week’s edition of Newscene, the student-produced weekly newscast that this month won a National Pacemaker Award for excellence in college journalism.

There are still outstanding ballots to count, since they are still arriving by mail. In California, those ballots will be counted as long as they were postmarked on or before Election Day are received by Nov. 20.

"I voted" stickers in a blue basquet.
Photo by Vicky Pineda/ City Times (Vicky Pineda)

On top of that, more than 100,000  people voted in-person on Election Day alone, according to Paes. 

“On election night, we still had approximately 370-thousand outstanding ballots that we still needed to process and get into the count,” Paes said. “Those are mail ballots, conditional voters registration provisional ballots, so those are still processing into the count.”

Paes expressed there were early concerns about voter intimidation and other interference, but her office had no reports of that happening.

“We just didn’t see that,” Paes said. “The normal electioneering took place. We always see that every election. People are surprised that they can’t walk into a polling place with their candidate’s name prominently displayed on their shirt or hat, (or in 2020, their) mask.

Some people are surprised by that. Others want to see if they can get away with it. But we are just trying to maintain the sanctuary of the polling place to where it’s a safe place where people can come and exercise their right to vote without partisanship coming into place during their visit.”

In other news:

Gloria the next mayor?: Todd Gloria is leading the election for mayor of San Diego County with 56.20% of the votes as of Thursday night, holding the lead over Barbara Bry that he has held since the first night of ballot counting.

Gloria went to social media on Wednesday to thank his supporters.

If Gloria does win, San Diego will become the second-largest city in the nation with an openly gay mayor, a big step for the LGBTQ community.

For the most up-to-date local election results, visit

COVID hits a new record: Coronavirus cases have been on the rise this week, with over 100,000 cases being reported nationally two days in a row – a first for the country.

Locally, 3.1% of tests came back positive, resulting in 530 new cases in San Diego County, but no new deaths.

Additionally, San Diego qualifies to be placed under purple-tier restrictions, though state officials have yet to make a final decision.

Senate seat flipping: A key senate seat in Arizona is on track to flip, with Democrat Mark Kelly projected to win over Republican Sen. Martha McSally. 

Kelly said he is hopeful about the results.

“I am very humbled to be here,” he told supporters on Wednesday, “And I am also confident that when the votes are counted, that we’re going to be successful in this mission.”

Arizona would mark the third state to flip a senate seat, along with Colorado and Alabama. 

Newscene multimedia journalists Benjamin Guadarrama, Assad Khalilzadeh, Kyle Ovenshire and Christina Painton contributed to this report.