The election results from San Diego’s northwest council district earlier this month resemble a sandwich.

Northern areas like Carmel Valley and southern areas like La Jolla supported Republican challenger Ray Ellis. Central areas like Torrey Pines and University City supported the incumbent councilwoman, Democrat Sherri Lightner.

The map below illustrates the sandwich in District 1 in more detail. Democrat challenger Bryan Pease won the most votes in a couple precincts while Republican challenger Dennis Ridz won none.

Since none of the four candidates got more than half the total vote in the district, the top two, Ellis and Lightner, will advance to a November runoff. The map underscores where they’ll need to work.

Before the primary, I spent a week exploring the district, learning its issues and talking to the candidates. Here’s an excerpt from a reader’s guide to my election coverage:

Some of the biggest issues in District 1 include preserving parkland in Del Mar Mesa, adding fire stations in University City, smoothening sidewalks in La Jolla, smoothening streets in Carmel Valley and the proposed Regents Road Bridge across Rose Canyon.

After the primary, I’m curious whether these or other issues had the most profound effect on voters’ decisions. If you voted in the district, I’d like to know who you supported and why.

For many, it appears the decision came down to political parties. The sandwich map above closely mirrors voter registration trends. Republicans dominate northern and southern neighborhoods (Carmel Valley and La Jolla) while Democrats are concentrated in the middle (University City). (See this U-T San Diego map for reference.)

Still, I’m hoping your insight will help us understand the geographic divide shown in map above and provide a preview of the big issues moving forward to the November runoff. Does the race just come down to political parties or will other issues lead the discussion?

Please add your thoughts in comments section below or email me directly.

Keegan Kyle is a news reporter for Voice of San Diego. He writes about local government, creates infographics and handles the Fact Check Blog. What should he write about next?

Please contact him directly at or 619.550.5668. You can also find him on Twitter (@keegankyle) and Facebook.

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