1951 San Diego mayoral election

1951 San Diego mayoral election
Flag of San Diego, California.svg
← 1947 April 17, 1951 (1951-04-17) 1955 →
  Mayor Butler.jpg
Nominee John D. Butler Gerald C. Crary
Party Republican Nonpartisan
Popular vote 46,400 31,501
Percentage 59.6% 40.4%

Mayor before election

Harley E. Knox

Elected Mayor

John D. Butler

The 1951 San Diego mayoral election was held on April 17, 1951 to elect the mayor for San Diego. Incumbent mayor Harley E. Knox did not stand for reelection. In the primary election, Gerald C. Crary and John D. Butler received the most votes and advanced to a runoff election. Butler was then elected mayor with a majority of the votes in the runoff.



Incumbent Mayor Harley E. Knox chose not stand for reelection on the advice of his physician.[1][2] On March 13, 1951, Gerald C. Crary came first in the primary election with 33.5 percent of the vote, followed by John D. Butler with 25.9 percent. Because no candidate received a majority of the vote, Crary and Butler advanced to a runoff election. On April 17, 1951, Butler received 59.6 percent of the vote in the runoff and was elected to the office of the mayor.[3] Butler was the youngest mayor to have been elected as well as the first to be born in San Diego.[2]

Primary Election results[edit]

San Diego mayoral primary election, 1951[3]
Party Candidate Votes %
Nonpartisan Gerald C. Crary 22,959 33.5
Republican John D. Butler 17,728 25.9
Nonpartisan Fred A. Rhodes 15,918 23.2
Nonpartisan Lilliam A. Johnson 7,619 11.1
Nonpartisan Hugh V. Knox 2,045 3.0
Nonpartisan Clifton L. Voorhies 1,371 2.0
Nonpartisan Edwin F. Murphy 877 1.3
Total votes 68,517 100

General Election results[edit]

San Diego mayoral general election, 1951[3]
Party Candidate Votes %
Republican John D. Butler 46,400 59.6
Nonpartisan Gerald C. Crary 31,501 40.4
Total votes 77,901 100


  1. ^ a b c d e f g "San Diego to Pick Mayor". Los Angeles Times. March 12, 1951. p. 42. Retrieved September 10, 2017.
  2. ^ a b c d Pourade, Richard (1977). The History of San Diego Volume VII: City of the Dream, 1940-1970. San Diego: Copley Press. Retrieved September 10, 2017.
  3. ^ a b c "Election History - Mayor of San Diego" (PDF). City of San Diego. Retrieved September 8, 2017.