Encinitas elections seemingly a family affair

Did husbands of outgoing councilwomen spoof mayoral candidate husband?

The seat in the Encinitas mayor’s office and three on the council are up for grabs in November. Three spouses of current and former councilwomen and one son-in-law of a former governor indicated they would run.

Kristin Gaspar

Kristin Gaspar

Paul Gaspar, husband of current mayor Kristin Gaspar, who leaves her seat open with a run-off bid for District 3 county supervisor, filed his papers on August 17 to run for his wife’s seat.

Don Barth, husband of former mayor and councilwoman Teresa Barth, received a lot of publicity when he pulled papers to run for mayor, but did not return them by the deadline.

Probably it was the same for announced council candidate Steve Bartram, who is the husband of outgoing councilwoman Lisa Shaffer. He also did not return his paperwork, announcing on the final day that he and Barth were not going to be running.

 Catherine Blakespear

Catherine Blakespear

One political insider commented that their reported candidacies were perhaps never serious — a humorous way to offset the current mayor’s husband running for her seat. Both former councilwomen Barth and Shaffer are usually on opposite sides of the political spectrum from current mayor Gaspar.

Political novice Phil Graham, son-in-law of former California governor Pete Wilson, has thrown his hat into the ring. Graham tried to get into his first elected office by running in the 76th Assembly primary. He backed out, along with Oceanside councilman Jerry Kern, after incumbent Rocky Chavez decided last minute to run for reelection.

With the filing deadline closing as of 6:00 p.m., August 17, city clerk Kathy Hollywood reported that five council and two mayoral candidates met the filing deadline. Their nomination signatures have been submitted to the registrar of voters for verification.

Joining Paul Gaspar in the run for mayor will be Cardiff resident and current councilwoman Catherine Blakespear. Along with Graham, council incumbents Tony Kranz and Mark Muir also face reelection against planning commissioners Tasha Boerner Hovath and Tony Brandenburg.

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