The contest between candidates Honey Mahogany and Supervisor Matt Dorsey to represent a pivotal slice of Downtown San Francisco came to a head Tuesday night with election results showing the incumbent, Dorsey, leading by a wide margin.
Dorsey had 55% of the votes to Mahogany’s 39% as of midnight.
The two supervisor candidates practically mirror each other on the main issues facing District 6, which contains the South of Market, Rincon Hill, Treasure Island and Mission Bay, as well as parts of the Financial District and Civic Center.
While Dorsey had a hefty lead, Mahogany was not ready to concede as of 11 p.m. Tuesday night. “There’s still a chance that we can pull ahead, a small chance.” Mahogany said. “We’re going to hold those candles of hope right in our hearts.”
The race has largely centered on how the two candidates propose addressing open-air drug markets in SoMa, which has accounted for 16% of the city’s total overdose deaths this year.
Dorsey—who was appointed by Mayor London Breed—said he plans to use his personal experience as a recovering addict to make progress on the city’s drug crisis. Mahogany, for her part, points to her resume as a social worker and a legislative aide to State Assemblymember Matt Haney, who previously served as supervisor of the district.
In the nearly five months since Breed appointed Dorsey, he’s introduced several policies related to curbing the drug crisis as well as a resolution aiming to coalesce city departments around a citywide plan to address the crisis. Mahogany said that, if elected, she would look to bolster the city’s depleted behavioral health workforce and create more rehabilitation centers.
Both campaigns raised close to half a million dollars each in donations. Groups like the San Francisco Labor Council made independent expenditures on behalf of Mahogany, while moderate and more business-oriented groups such as GrowSF spent for Dorsey.
The money trail reflects both candidate’s perceived political allegiances. Dorsey is seen as the choice of the city’s political center, while Mahogany is champion of the city’s progressive political faction, aligned with the current majority of the Board of Supervisors.
District 6 is one of two that were substantially changed in this year’s controversial redistricting process. Much of the Civic Center was removed and put in District 5, along with the Tenderloin. This has increased speculation that more political weight in the district will shift to the new neighborhoods in SoMa and Mission Bay.