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Go for the Pols: The contenders in some hotly contested local races include 1) Tony Campos; 2) Mike Schmidt; 3) Mardi Wormhoudt; 4) John Laird; 5) Mark Primack; 6) Bob Lee; 7) Sam Farr; 8) Chuck Carter; 9) Kate Canlis; 10) Ramon Gomez; 11) Stephany Aguilar.

The Candidate Mash

An delicate purée of races, measures and propositions, lightly seasoned

THIS YEAR, despite the painful lessons learned from the Florida debacle (or because of them), even fewer voters have registered than in the previous primary. Undeterred, the Santa Cruz County Elections Department is hoping to get as many registered voters out as possible using the ultimate weapon: Santa Cruz "Survivor" Lex van den Berghe.

No, he isn't running for political office. But he'll be working at one of the county's 152 polling stations on Primary Day. To find out which station, you'll have to vote--a tricky situation that suits the Lexster just fine.

"I don't think anyone has the right to have an attitude or complain about what's going on, if they can't take the time to go and vote, because they made a conscious decision to surrender themselves to the whims of others," says Lex.

With memories of dangling chads still fresh, it's worth remembering that in the open primary system, you may vote for any candidate in a partisan race, but your vote won't count if you are not a member of the party of the candidate for whom you vote--unless you are registered as nonpartisan, in which case you can vote in Democratic, Republican, American Independent or Natural Law races.

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Voter's Guide: Local Races, Local Measures, State Propositions, Voter Reference Guide

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From the February 27-March 6, 2002 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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