San Diego City Attorney Mara Elliott claimed victory Tuesday night in her bid to retain her post after jumping out to an early but significant 68.83% to 31.17% lead over challenger Cory Briggs, a private attorney, on Election Night.
"When I was elected four years ago, I pledged to put the people of San Diego first, and that's just what we've done,'' Elliott said in a statement.
"With the help of our terrific team in the City Attorney's office, San Diego is a leader in reducing gun violence, helping domestic violence victims, and holding corporate polluters accountable. We moved quickly to protect public health during the pandemic and we've made it a priority to safeguard taxpayer dollars. I'm humbled and grateful that the people of San Diego have placed their trust in me to fight for them for another term.''
Elliott has been city attorney since 2016, and since then has taken an uncharacteristically proactive approach to the role, sometimes ruffling feathers, such as with the Smart Streetlights program. In August, members of the San Diego City Council boycotted a meeting with Elliott over restrictions on sensitive documents.
Briggs had not conceded by 5 p.m. Thursday night.
Briggs has sued the city dozens of times, ostensibly to increase transparency at City Hall. He said he wants to remove petty politics from the office.
"As someone who has spent nearly two decades fighting special interests at City Hall, I believe now's the time to bring my training, experience and taxpayers-first approach to the City Attorney's Office,'' he said.
Elliott has pointed to Briggs' many lawsuits as reasons she is more fit for the office.
The pair have faced off in court during the election cycle. Elliot sued Briggs for identifying himself as a taxpayers' advocate, while Briggs sued Elliot for claiming an endorsement from the San Diego Union-Tribune after it expired. Briggs prevailed in both cases.
The city attorney serves as the city's prosecutor and legal adviser.