Newsom placed first in the November 4, 2003, general election in a nine-person field. Newsom received 41. 9 percent of the vote to Green Party candidate Matt Gonzalez's 19. 6 in the first round of balloting, but he faced a closer race in the December 9 run-off when many of the city's progressive groups coalesced around Gonzalez. The race was partisan with attacks against Gonzalez for his support of Ralph Nader in the 2000 presidential election, and attacks against Newsom for contributing $500 to a Republican slate mailer in 2000 that endorsed issues Newsom supported. Democratic leadership felt that they needed to reinforce San Francisco as a Democratic stronghold after losing the 2000 presidential election and the 2003 recall election to Arnold Schwarzenegger. National figures from the Democratic Party, including Bill Clinton, Al Gore, and Jesse Jackson, campaigned on Newsom's behalf. Five supervisors endorsed Gonzalez, while Newsom received the endorsement of Willie Brown.
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