DALLAS — The race for San Antonio mayor appeared headed for a runoff Saturday night, with 30-year-old Councilman Julian Castro the front-runner. With 76% of precincts counted, Castro had 41% of the vote.
Councilman Carroll W. Schubert, 57, had about 27% of the vote, and Phil Hardberger, a 70-year-old retired appeals court judge, had about 30%.
If no candidate gets 50%, the top two vote-getters will meet in a runoff election in June that will decide who replaces term-limited Ed Garza as mayor of the nation's eighth-largest city.
Castro made national headlines when he had his twin brother, a state lawmaker, take his place in a parade float. Opposing mayoral candidates accused the brothers of trying to deceive parade watchers, who mistook the stand-in for the candidate.
With his boyish looks and slight build, Castro heard wisecracks on the campaign trail about his age and youthful appearance. Schubert made an issue out of Castro's age, saying he lacked the proper experience.
"This completely erases any issues about age," Castro said as he watched returns with his staff. "We always knew this would be a competitive race. We're energetic about the next 30 days."
In Dallas, voters rejected a proposal to give the mayor much more governing power.
With 88% of precincts counted, about 60% of voters said no to a major overhaul of the city charter that would shift the balance of power at City Hall to the mayor and away from the 14 council members, said city election officials.
Mayor Laura Miller and other supporters of the measure contended it would free the mayor to address the city's woes: job losses, an empty downtown, racial tensions and the highest big-city crime rate in the country.
Opponents, including all 14 council members, said the proposal gave the mayor too much power and failed to ensure adequate checks and balances.