NewsElection 2022


Several key Kern County election races remain too close to call as other come to a conclusion

As more election numbers come in, some Kern County candidates can claim victory as some results have come to a conclusion. 23ABC’s Henry Flores has an election update on several key local races.
Kern County Elections Drop Box Sign (FILE)
Posted at 4:35 PM, Nov 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-11-22 20:21:47-05

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. (KERO) — Jeff Flores, and David Valadao, have triumphed in successful campaigns. Jasmeet Bains's campaign has claimed victory in her race. But Melissa Hurtado versus David Shepard is one race still up in the air.

Several of the races had yet to conclude with a winner, but the race for 3rd District Supervisor in Kern County now has a clear winner in Flores.

Jeff Flores, Board of Supervisors, Bakersfield (FILE)

“At the end of the day we have about a two thousand vote lead and [Monday] my opponent Brian Smith who is a very hard worker and a gentleman, called me to concede,” said Flores. “It was a hard-fought race, and [Monday] night we finally got the results that we were looking for, and I am very thankful to the voters of the 3rd District.”

Some candidates have been waiting for the ballots to be fully counted to determine the outcome.

Mary Bedard, the Kern County Auditor-Controller-County Clerk (FILE)

“We are estimating there is about, you know 3,300 hundred ballots left, but that even that can change," explained Mary Bedard, the Kern County Auditor-Controller-County Clerk. "A lot of that is provisional ballots. A lot of that is actually vote by mail ballot.”

The Associated Press declared Valadao the winner in his race against Rudy Salas on Monday for the 22nd District in the United States House of Representatives. Tuesday, Salas conceded and thanked his supporters.

As of Tuesday, Jasmeet Bains still holds a large lead over Leticia Perez for the 35th Assembly District. And the Shepard/Hurtado race for State Senator District 16 is still close, only separated by a few hundred votes.

As for Flores, he says even with the delay, the race was an unforgettable experience.

“It was good. It was, you know, there were some fulfilling moments. There were some tough moments, but that is part of the campaign. It was great to go out to all the neighborhoods to meet with the people one on one.”

Kern County Ballots (FILE)

California has the largest number of registered voters in the nation with over 21.9 million registered voters. That's why it takes time to make sure votes cast by eligible voters are accurately processed.

By law, California county election officials have 30 days, also known as the canvass period, to count every valid ballot and conduct a required post-election audit.

County elections must finalize their official results to the secretary of state by December 8th. They will then certify the results on December 16.