1935 San Diego mayoral election

1935 San Diego mayoral election
Flag of San Diego, California.svg
← 1932 April 23, 1935 (1935-04-23) 1939 →
  Mayor Benbough.jpg
Nominee Percy J. Benbough A. Ray Sauer Jr.
Party Republican Nonpartisan
Popular vote 22,190 18,615
Percentage 54.4% 45.6%

Mayor before election

Albert W. Bennett (acting)

Elected Mayor

Percy J. Benbough

The 1935 San Diego mayoral election was held on April 23, 1935, to elect the mayor for San Diego. Two mayors had resigned since the previous mayoral election, and no incumbent mayor stood for reelection. In the primary election, Percy J. Benbough and A. Ray Sauer Jr. received the most votes and advanced to a runoff election. Benbough was then elected mayor with a majority of the votes in the runoff.



Previously elected mayor John F. Forward Jr. had resigned mid-term and did not contest the 1935 election.[2] His appointed replacement, Rutherford B. Irones had also resigned prior to the election and did not contest it.[3] Vice Mayor Albert W. Bennett served as acting mayor during the campaign.[4] Bennett did not contest the election.

Several civic leaders who called themselves the Civic Affairs Conference endorsed a slate of candidates for the 1935 mayoral and city council elections. The convention endorsed local businessman Percy J. Benbough as their candidate for mayor. Another challenger was Harry C. Steinmetz, a teacher at San Diego State College who ran a socialistic campaign endorsing full public ownership of all utilities.[1]

On March 26, 1935, Benbough came in first in the primary election with 34.6 percent of the votes, followed by A. Ray Sauer Jr., son of the publisher of a weekly newspaper,[1] in second place with 20.5 percent. Steinmetz finished third with 12.4 percent of the vote, and was eliminated from the runoff. Since no candidate received a majority of the vote, Benbough and Sauer advanced to a runoff election. On April 23, 1935, Benbough came in first place in the runoff election with 54.3 percent of the vote and was elected to the office of the mayor.[5]

Primary election results[edit]

1935 San Diego mayoral primary election[5]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Percy J. Benbough 12,443 34.6
Nonpartisan A. Ray Sauer Jr. 7,349 20.5
Socialist Harry C. Steinmetz 4,470 12.4
Nonpartisan William E. Harper 3,875 10.8
Nonpartisan Henry B. Cramer 3,629 10.1
Nonpartisan Le Roy E. Goodbody 3,161 8.8
Nonpartisan Daniel M. Denton 444 1.2
Nonpartisan C. Leon De Aryan 339 0.9
Nonpartisan Rufus S. Hendon 229 0.6
Total votes 35,939 100

General election results[edit]

1935 San Diego mayoral general election[5]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican Percy J. Benbough 22,190 54.4
Nonpartisan A. Ray Sauer Jr. 18,615 45.6
Total votes 40,805 100


  1. ^ a b c d Pourade, Richard (1967). The History of San Diego Volume VI: The Rising Tide, 1920-1941. San Diego: Copley Press. Retrieved September 10, 2017.
  2. ^ "Forward to End Job August 1 Action Follows His Failure to Oust F. M. Lockwood as City Manager Three Councilmen and City Attorney in Line for Post as Municipal Head". Los Angeles Times. April 18, 1934. pp. A8. Retrieved September 5, 2013.
  3. ^ "Hit-Run Mayor Drops Out". The New York Times. February 5, 1935. Retrieved September 5, 2013.
  4. ^ "Bennett Acting Mayor of S.D. as Irones Fate Debated". Evening Tribune. February 2, 1935. p. 1. Retrieved February 26, 2014.
  5. ^ a b c "Election History - Mayor of San Diego" (PDF). City of San Diego. Retrieved September 8, 2017.