Joe Simitian was coasting to an easy win, according to early election returns Tuesday night, in his bid to return to the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors.
With 14 percent of Santa Clara County’s 190 precincts reporting, Simitian held a commanding 58 percent of the vote, compared to his two opponents, both veterans of the Cupertino City Council.
Kris Wang, a former mayor and council member, had 23 percent, or 7,637 votes and Barry Chang, a sitting council member, had 19 percent, or 6,500 votes.
Simitian said he was pleased with the early returns but declined to comment on the race until the next vote update.
Simitian held the widest name recognition of the three.
Like a host of veteran politicians, from former Secretary of State Bruce McPherson to former Assemblymember Wilma Chang, Simitian, rose to state office, and then, because of term limits, has elected to seek a job he has done before.
The former Palo Alto Union School District board member and former Palo Alto mayor ascended the ladder of political office over the past two decades. He held the supervisors’ seat from 1997 to 2000, and from there served on the state Assembly. Since 2004, he has represented the 11th District in the state Senate.
Simitian has said he hopes to put his state legislature experience to work to help the county, which has less and less revenues to spend on residents’ needs.