By Jessica Marks
Signal Staff Writer
Wednesday November 8, 2006
Voters made their voices heard Tuesday night as preliminary results showed Cameron Smyth won the 38th State Assembly District over Democratic candidate Lyn Shaw.
In Los Angeles and Ventura counties, 63 percent of all absentee ballots were for Smyth, prompting him to give a victory speech just an hour after the polls closed.
“For once, California is bucking the trend,” Smyth said, commenting on the election’s tendency to oust Republican candidates for Democratic ones.
“We’re not going to take the Assembly, but … I’m going to be up there fighting (for the) district and for the state,” he said.
Preliminary results at 10 p.m. showed that Smyth received 15,785 votes, and Shaw came in second with 7,399, followed by Libertarian candidate Peggy Christensen with 1,129.
Smyth described Shaw as “classy” and added that he lost his first run for City Council, “so I know how that feels.”
So while Smyth was getting slaps on the back and words of congratulations at the Republican headquarters in Newhall, Shaw was at an Italian restaurant for a sit-down dinner – the first she’d had in a long time since running in the race, she said.
Shaw was in good spirits in the evening, and said that she was proud of the fact that the race was about issues as opposed to personal attacks.
“I’m proud of the people around us, we brought out some voters and raised some awareness about the issues,” she said.
She was also proud of the fact that she was able to run a serious Democratic campaign in a historically conservative and Republican community.
Some of the biggest issues to confront the candidates were the planned Cemex sand and gravel mine in Soledad Canyon and educational issues, such as how to fix flaws in the Los Angeles Unified School District.
Both Smyth and Shaw vehemently opposed the Cemex plans, but Smyth supporters thought he was the better advocate for the city.
“He is aware of every aspect of that issue,” said Santa Clarita Mayor Laurene Weste.
Councilwoman Marsha McLean agreed.
“We’re relying on him. We’re relying on the state,” she said.