As Tuesday ended, Richard Valle held the lead over challengers in his effort to defend the District 2 Alameda County supervisor seat.
He had to fight off challengers Mark Green, Mary Hayashi and Mark Turnquist. Green came closest but landed in second place. Hayashi came in third with a retired sheriff's deputy, Mark Turnquist, trailing in fourth place.
Supervisors installed Valle in July after Nadia Lockyer vacated the position less than two years into her term.
The campaign was marked by last-minute attacks on Hayashi, a termed-out Assemblywoman convicted of shoplifting $2,450 worth of goods from a Neiman Marcus department store. She was charged with a misdemeanor and received a 30-month probation sentence that she is still serving.
Signs posted around District 2 and a flurry of attack mailers paid for by political foes from her six years in the Assembly sought to remind voters of her conviction.
This election marks the second try at the supervisor's seat for Green.
He was termed out after 19 years and made a run for the 18th Assembly District as an Independent but didn't qualify during the first round in June. He was also a distant runner-up during the original appointment process to the District 2 Supervisor's post.
His aloofness, which can translate into arrogance instead of independence, may have hurt his chances during the first try at the District 2 seat. On a board monopolized by pro-labor supervisors and Democrats, Green countered, his independence is a good thing. "I don't march to any particular beat," he said.
However, Green is the most overtly business friendly candidate. His main strategy to increase revenue revolves around attracting more business by easing permitting and improving infrastructure.
At times the Hayashi-Valle rivalry overshadowed Green's campaign. He and Valle knew each other well from their years together on the Union City Council. Green was known for dominated the council.
Valle, who served three terms on the council, was known as a close ally to unions, which donated handsomely to his campaign.
Valle was a trustee on the board of directors that governs St. Rose Hospital, which had economic woes so grave that the facility faced closure.
He was also the Union City representative to the Associated Community Action Program from 2008 to 2010. The organization dissolved under the weight of multiple investigations into fraud, something Hayashi tried to use against Valle without mentioning him by name.
Valle countered by saying that he blew the whistle on ACAP. He cast himself as a frugal supervisor and community advocate.
He relied on his record as founder of Tri-Ced Community Recycling, a nonprofit. Valle was receiving a salary of at least $304,000 until late September.
Valle may once again face Green and Hayashi in 2014, when he will have to run for re-election if he wants to serve a full term.