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Career prosecutor Ron Del Pozzo beat out fellow Deputy DA Aaron Persky in the run-off for a seat on the Santa Clara bench. The 12-year deputy district attorney captured 111,679, or 52.1 percent of the vote compared to Persky’s 102,801, or 47.9 percent. Del Pozzo took a slim lead at 8 p.m. Tuesday when results started streaming in, and gained breathing room as more of Santa Clara’s 1,220 precincts were counted. Del Pozzo, who spent election night party-hopping with his wife, said his broad-based support from law enforcement, labor, immigrant communities and local politicians made the difference. “I want to congratulate Aaron for the fine campaign and positive campaign he ran. He was an outstanding candidate and I would not be surprised to see him on the bench in the future,” Del Pozzo, 48, said. “We both did it without making comparisons to each other and without any interoffice rivalry that would have divided the office.” Del Pozzo, a prosecutor in the career criminal unit, spent $100,000 on the campaign. Persky, who handles hate crimes and sex-offender commitment proceedings, spent $127,000, included $70,000 of his own money. Del Pozzo said money was less important than the endorsers he lined up, which included Sheriff Laurie Smith, U.S. Representatives Zoe Lofgren and Mike Honda, the AFL-CIO, and local officials. “They e-mailed constituents. I think that was extremely effective in a countywide race. It’s extremely effective for voters to hear from their local representatives,” Del Pozzo said. “It doesn’t cost me much and I have to rely on that because my family does not have money. We spent less than $5,000 on the campaign.” Persky, a deputy DA for the past five years who worked previously as a civil litigator at Morrison & Foerster, campaigned on his blend of civil and criminal experience and his education. The 40-year-old was endorsed by the Santa Clara Bar Association and the San Jose Mercury News. He spent election night at colleague Matthew Braker’s San Jose home watching election results on the computer and chatting with friends and colleagues. But by 11 p.m. the party had cleared as Del Pozzo’s lead widened.

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