A challenger trounced the president of the Los Angeles teachers union in his re-election bid, but fell just short of the 50 percent of the vote required to avoid a runoff, the union announced today.
The incumbent, Warren Fletcher, earned 21.24 percent of the vote, while challenger Alex Caputo-Pearl won 48.01 percent, according to United Teachers Los Angeles.
Caputo-Pearl said his Union Power team "had an overwhelming victory, with wins at officer and board of directors positions across the city, and a huge show of support in the presidential race."
He said the near-victory will "propel us to victory for a fight for a pay increase, for class-size reduction and increases in staffing, against teacher jail and around all of the other issues that are critical in public education today."
Fletcher called the results "fairly unambiguous. The voting majority has decisively signaled the desire for a change on direction."
The runoff election ballots will be mailed to UTLA members on April 7, and ballots will be counted April 29.
--City News Service