Late Write-in Mayoral Candidacy in Coronado Comes to Abrupt End

A late entry into the Coronado mayoral race is invalid, city officials say.

It may well be the shortest run for mayor in Coronado history: A campaign that gained public notice less than a week ago has been brought down by election rules and city policy. 

Signs for write-in candidate and city employee Kirk Horvath started popping up in yards, and last weekend he told the community website ecoronado.com he was running to “wake up the soul of this community, to get more of the people involved to have an impact on the decision making on the issues that effect (sic) us all.”

Even write-in candidates have to file papers, however, and officials say Horvath did not.

“If they get any votes, the votes they receive will not be counted,” said Rosemary Norling of San Diego County’s Register of Voters.

The deadline for notifying the city of such a candidacy was Tuesday Oct. 23 and “no papers were filed,” said Coronado City Clerk Linda Hascup. 

Even if Horvath had filed his documents on time, he would have faced another barrier. As a city employee, “he is not allowed to run for office,” said Janine Zuniga, a spokesperson for the city.

The rule is part of the city’s personnel policy, Zuniga said, and based on it, Horvath could have faced dismissal for his political activities.

Horvath could not be reached for comment.

Mayor Casey Tanaka is being challenged by Councilwoman Barbara Denny as he seeks a second term. They have appeared at multiple candidate forums and are sharply divided on issues facing the community.

Horvath’s concerns regarding development and city finances, as stated to ecoronado, appear to echo stances put forth by Denny’s campaign.