Fresno · Highlight · Politics

Karbassi cruises to Fresno City Council victory

Small businessman Mike Karbassi commanded an early lead and never let it go as returns from Tuesday’s special election rolled in.

Karbassi, one of six men on the ballot to fill a vacant seat formerly held by Fresno County Supervisor Steve Brandau, garnered an early 59.22 percent lead in early absentee ballots returns.

After all precincts reported their results, Karbassi’s lead never dipped below 59 percent.

Karbassi’s closest competition, businessman Lawrence Garcia, garnered 16.34 percent of the vote with all precincts reporting.

Other candidates included attorney Jared Gordon, special needs therapist Oscar Sandoval, attorney and accountant George Herman, and financial adviser Phil Arballo.

Arballo, who waffled on a run before the filing deadline, quit the race after being certified on the ballot. He is currently running against Rep. Devin Nunes (R-Tulare).

Over the course of the campaign, Karbassi managed to capture many of the key endorsements in the city – from Fresno’s police chief Jerry Dyer and Sheriff Margaret Mims to ex-Mayors Alan Autry and Jim Patterson, currently a state Assemblyman.

With 36 hours before Election Day, current Fresno Mayor Lee Brand joined the effort and backed Karbassi’s bid.

He also greatly led the field in campaign funding.

Karbassi, a Democrat, also managed to serve as the consensus candidate between business and labor – winning the backing of the Fresno Chamber of Commerce and the Fresno-Madera-Tulare-Kings Central Labor Council.

Election Results as of Tues. Aug. 13, 9:36 p.m.

Mike Karbassi480058.91
Lawrence D Garcia133116.34
Jared Gordon89611.00
Oscar Sandoval82310.10
George Herman1782.18
Phil Arballo1081.33
Staff reports from The San Joaquin Valley Sun staff.