Barstow Mayor Lawrence Dale, must stand for re-election next Tuesday. Dale, a 72 year-old Kansas native, moved to Barstow in 1975 as an employee of BNSF Railroad. A registered Republican, He was first elected Mayor in 2000 when he defeat incumbent Mayor Katy Yslas-Yent. This election cycle Dale is faced with two opponents.
Locals believe Barstow Councilman Joe Gomez, a Democrat, is a formidable opponent and is the one candidate who could defeat Dale in his bid for re-election. Gomez was elected to the Barstow City Council in 2004. He was born and raised in Barstow. But despite knowing that, Mayor Dale has been overheard publicly referring to Gomez derogatorily as "The Mexican."
When a local community activist confronted Dale about his racist reference at a City Council meeting, Dale simply ignored the activist and failed to defend or deny the charges.