After establishing a sizable lead, Fresno County Deputy District Attorney Sally Orme Moreno declared victory in her race against Madera County Senior Deputy District Attorney Paul Hornick for Madera County’s District Attorney seat.
According to the most recent reports, Moreno had 56.17 percent of the vote and Hornick had 43.83 percent.
The Madera County Elections Division stated there were still “thousands” of votes left to be counted.
“I look forward to working with the attorneys in (the district attorney’s) office, building relationships, becoming a team and moving forward in the right direction to keep Madera safe,” Moreno said.
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Hornick could not be reached for comment late Tuesday.
Moreno said she also had not heard from him, but she expressed she was looking forward to working with Hornick when he returns to his role as deputy district attorney.
Incumbent David Linn conceded his bid for reelection in June during the midterm elections, leaving challengers Moreno and Hornick to compete in the runoff.
Moreno spent Election Night at The Tap House in Madera for a celebration with supporters. By 10 p.m., the gathering had died down and her victory was still sinking in.
Hornick spent the night at home, saying “no point in celebrating anything” since he would not know if he had won by then. He could not be reached for comment Tuesday night.
Neither candidate went on the offensive against the other during their campaigns, with both instead highlighting their own qualifications for the position.
Moreno promoted her time with the Los Angeles Police Department and the Army, as well as her success as a homicide prosecutor. Hornick followed suit and centered his campaign around his time in the Army and his success as deputy district attorney in Madera County.
Both candidates received notable endorsements from local law enforcement officials and organizations. Moreno was endorsed by the likes of Madera County Sheriff Jay Varney and the Madera Deputy Sheriff’s Association. Hornick had the support of Madera Police Officers’ Association and Madera County Prosecutors’ Association, among others.
The runoff race is without an incumbent partially due to the controversy that dominated Linn’s recent reelection bid in June. In November of 2017, the district attorney was censured by the Madera County Board of Supervisors after accusations of workplace harassment, abuse and discrimination. The accusations are under still under investigation by the Attorney General and Linn still denies the allegations.
Moreno would like to leave those controversies in the past and make the district attorney’s office a workspace filled with “teamwork” and “synergy.”
“A team is more valuable than the sum of all of its parts and that’s exactly true with the district attorney’s team, too. Right now, there’s a lot of great parts that are working in that office doing their best and working their hardest to get things done,” she said. “Once you trust your teammates going to be there when you pass the ball, everything is going to move much more quickly.”
In its early stages, the runoff election is reflecting a similar result to the race in June. Moreno finished with 45 percent of the vote, while Hornick and Linn finished with 33 percent and 22 percent, respectively.