Todd Gloria just gave an almost-victory speech for the District 3 San Diego City Council race.

With his parents, partner and mentor at his side, the 30-year-old Democrat spoke like a man about to ascend to public office. He talked of the “clear marching orders” to make District 3 neighborhoods safe, and of his impatience to get down to City Hall and get to work.

“We’re almost there, it’s looking very good,” Gloria said to cheering supporters at a packed Westgate Hotel ballroom. Gloria currently leads Stephen Whitburn 54.43 percent to 45.57 percent with 13.2 percent of the precincts reporting.

Gloria spent a good portion of his speech talking about where he came from and what his candidacy represents.

“My mom was a hotel maid, my dad a gardener,” Gloria said. “Only in San Diego could I be your next city councilmember.”

He thanked Congresswoman Susan Davis, whom he has worked for in one capacity or another since he was 14 years old. Davis called Gloria “quiet in a dynamic way.”

He was also praised by the woman he will likely replace, current District 3 Councilwoman Toni Atkins. “I’m excited about [Gloria],” Atkins said. “I think he is better equipped [than Whitburn] to hit the ground running.”

Across the street at the US Grant Hotel, Whitburn stood in the middle of a far more subdued gathering. Whitburn acknowledged the deep hole he is in, but said he is not ready to concede.

“I have no idea what will happen,” Whitburn said. “It may turn out by the end of the night that we are on top. Or it may not.”

DAVID WASHBURN

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