San Jose D4 councilmember appears to win reelection
Cohen all smiles with supporters as he appears to be headed for a second term. Photo by B. Sakura Cannesta.

Cheers erupted at councilmember David Cohen’s viewing party as early results showed him with a large lead.

As of 5 p.m. Wednesday, Cohen is leading his challenger with 58.5% of the vote. The sole challenger in the race, former San Jose District 4 Councilmember Kansen Chu, has 41.4% of the vote. The individual with the most votes will win the seat outright. There will be no runoff in November.

The early results include a voter turnout of about 37.3%, according to the Santa Clara County Registrar of Voters. The registrar’s office is expecting turnout for this primary election to land at about 35% to 45%, officials said on Election Day. There are approximately 1,025 unprocessed ballots remaining.

Cohen, the incumbent, said on election night that he’s glad to be done campaigning. 

“It’s really important for me to get back to work serving the community,” Cohen told San José Spotlight.

San Jose Councilmember David Cohen has a large lead, and appears to be headed for a second term. Photo by B. Sakura Cannesta.

Cohen was first elected in 2020 after beating out incumbent Lan Diep, switching the council’s business-majority to one that favored labor. But during his term, he voted for some policies contrary to the South Bay Labor Council’s platform, and it cost him its endorsement — instead, he won the Silicon Valley Biz PAC’s endorsement.

Councilmember David Cohen is all smiles as he watches election results with supporters Tuesday night. Photo by B. Sakura Cannesta.

Supporters chanted “SHOTS!” and congratulated Cohen on the early lead as the first results rolled in.

Mike Kraus, president of the Penitencia Neighborhood Association, said he advocated for Cohen throughout his neighborhood because he’s seen Cohen enact the change he promises.

“Dave Cohen is a man of deeds, not just words, ” told San José Spotlight. We have a lot of politicians who are out there to just say things when they campaign but I observe Dave Cohen with his actions.”

Chu did not respond to requests for comment.

During the race, Chu raised more money with $125,939 and Cohen brought in $83,753 as of Dec. 31, 2023.

This story will be updated.

Contact B. Sakura Cannestra at [email protected] or @SakuCannestra on X, formerly known as Twitter. 

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