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Politics

Two Republicans Likely Face Each Other In San Diego Supervisor District 2 Seat

San Diego County Board of Supervisors candidates Steve Vaus, Joel Anderson, Kenya Taylor, and Brian Sesko are pictured in this undated photo.
KPBS Staff
San Diego County Board of Supervisors candidates Steve Vaus, Joel Anderson, Kenya Taylor, and Brian Sesko are pictured in this undated photo.
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UPDATE: 6:56 a.m., March 4, 2020

With 350,000 ballots to be counted countywide, it appears two Republicans will face off against each other in November in the race to replace Dianne Jacob on the County Board of Supervisors.

Former state Sen. Joel Anderson and Poway Mayor Steve Vaus are both more than 10,000 votes ahead of Democrat Kenya Taylor in third.

Jacob is termed out and could not seek reelection.

Original story

The Board of Supervisors' District 2 is the largest district in San Diego County, sprawled across 2,000 square miles, from the southern border to as far north as Julian, from the Imperial County border to as far west as San Diego State.

Since 1992, it has been represented by Republican Dianne Jacob, but term limits mean she is now on her way out.

Jacob has passionately endorsed Steve Vaus, who is currently serving his second term as mayor of Poway, and is chairman of the San Diego Association of Governments.

“Being a supervisor and being a mayor, there's an awful lot in common and I've got a track record of getting things done," Vaus said.

Vaus, who is Republican, said his priority is to keep his constituents safe from crime and fire, but also to improve housing.

Another Republican candidate in the race is former state senator Joel Anderson, who has been officially endorsed by the Republican Party of San Diego.

San Diego County's District 2.
KPBS Staff
San Diego County's District 2.

In the hopes of flipping the District 2 seat in 2020, the Democratic Party of San Diego has endorsed Rancho San Diego resident Kenya Taylor for the board. Taylor has a background as a licensed marriage and family therapist and is an executive committee member of the NAACP’s San Diego Branch.

“I'm the only candidate who has the expertise to manage the mental health crisis that we are seeing in our county, and unfortunately this is the worst I've seen it in my lifetime,” Taylor said.

Taylor said she wants to enhance mental health programs so the county jail is not the largest mental health facility in the county. Among her other priorities, Taylor wants to focus on supporting small businesses, and environmental issues like clean air and food. She said the large geographic size of District 2 means governing requires a "one size does not fit all" approach.

Another contender for the seat is long-time Lakeside resident, cattle-rancher and general contractor Brian Sesko. On his website, Sesko lists the “nine to fivers” as his supporters — the “regular folk.” He is a registered independent.