Kernighan cautiously optimistic

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live report by James Woodard

As early numbers roll in, Pat Kernighan is being cautiously optimistic at his election night party being held at Sushi Zone on Ninth Street in downtown Oakland. Supporters of Kernighan, including Oakland City Council President, Ignacio de la Fuente, are calling her a woman of action and someone who works hard for Oakland, whether or not everyone likes her position.

"She's [here] to get the job done. You can't be afraid to upset people. Not everyone is going to be happy with it. We're diverse. She's a real doer."

Other supporters at this festive yet subdued party, where a DJ is spinning everything from 50s Beach Boys to "Brick House," echo his sentiments. "You've got to get rid a lot of the old garbage," says 40-year Oakland resident John Stewart. "There are people who want the best for Oakland and the refuse to give up."

As the sushi keeps flowing for the approximately 200 party attendees, so does talk about the impact of absentees ballots, which greatly effected Kernighan's last run for Council, her third time in the last year and a half. Victory tonight would be a clear sign that people from District 2 support her. Danny Wan, former Council member volunteered heavily for her campaign, as did five of her previous opponents.