Stockton City Council Candidate Mariela Ponce Triumphs in Legal Battle to Secure Ballot Eligibility
In an inspiring turn of events, Mariela Ponce, a political newcomer, healthcare worker, and mother, has won a significant legal victory against her own city and county governments. Today at the San Joaquin Superior Court, Judge Jayne Lee ruled in favor of Ponce, who was unjustly “disqualified” from running for office due to an incorrect designation by the San Joaquin Registrar’s office.
The Registrar, Olivia Hale, erroneously declared Ponce as “Not registered” to vote, despite the fact that she was an actual registered voter. Facing this hurdle, Ponce courageously filed a lawsuit in pro per to fight for her Constitutional right to run for office. Her determination and belief in justice paid off, as Judge Lee issued a writ of mandate ordering the government agencies to place Ponce on the ballot for the upcoming Stockton City Council race for District 2, north Stockton. The election will be in March, 2024.
Questions have been raised about the apparent lack of impartiality regrading Registrar Olivia Hale and why she made an “error” regarding a candidate being placed on the ballot who is running in the same district as her personal friend and pastor. This latest action by Hale follows an apparent pattern that also previously included making an “error” that benefitted disgraced SUSD trustee Angelann Flores, whose campaign manager was working for Hale processing ballots.
Ponce entered the race to bring about positive changes in her community. Her victory in court is not just a personal triumph, but also a win for the average person to assert their rights.
Judge Lee also ordered that former Stockton Councilman Ralph White be on the ballot in City Council district 6, which is currently represented by Kimberly Warmsley. Entrepreneur Jason Lee is also running in the same district for the chance to represent south Stockton and Weston Ranch.
This legal victory for Ponce is a reminder that every individual has the power to challenge injustices and make a difference in their community.
Congratulations to Mariella Ponce on her victory!