Election Results: LGBT Races to Watch
BY Michelle Garcia
November 06 2012 6:37 PM ET UPDATED: November 12 2012 4:13 PM ET
Carl DeMaio — San Diego Mayor - UPDATE: 1 p.m. Eastern, Wednesday
City Council member Carl DeMaio conceded the election to his Democratic challenger Bob Filner in the race to become the next mayor of San Diego. DeMaio was in the running to become the first gay Republican mayor of a major city but was defeated with 48.5% of the vote.
DeMaio will also leave the City Council next month after one term in office, but he said he is confident the city will become a "great city" no matter what political party is at the helm.
"There is no Republican or Democrat way to do that, there is no gay or straight way to do that," DeMaio said Wednesday morning, the Los Angeles Times reports.
Filner will follow pro-gay Republican Jerry Sanders, who was termed out of office. Sanders endorsed DeMaio but said Wednesday that he hopes Filner will continue the city' progress. DeMaio was also endorsed by The San Diego Union-Tribune, which is owned by Doug Manchester, a supporter of Proposition 8.
According to the San Diego Gay and Lesbian News, which is owned by DeMaio's partner, Jonathan Hale, Filner reportedly made a point to mention the fact that DeMaio was in a relationship with another man. During the media conference on Wednesday morning, a reporter asked the candidate why he had not appeared frequently with Hale on the campaign trail, unlike that morning, when Hale was by his side.
"I think you've missed a lot," DeMaio countered. "Jonathan and I have been together in my district and throughout the city for three years now."
While San Diego is one of California's more conservative cities, its exiting mayor, Jerry Sanders, is a Republican who has also been a vocal advocate for marriage equality, winning him support from LGBT residents. In the race to succeed him, the gay Republican DeMaio might have receives less support from LGBT voters who have backed Sanders, as many of them prefer his Democratic opponent, Bob Filner. DeMaio was not the Log Cabin Republicans' first choice for the mayoralty, and the Gay and Lesbian Victory Fund did not endorse him. While Sanders played a prominent role in the campaign against Proposition 8 in 2008, DeMaio stayed quiet on the issue during his City Council race, the The New York Times notes. Still, DeMaio is running with the full support of the city's Republican Party, and his opponent says DeMaio is "beholden to these antigay financial interests."