NPI's Cascadia Advocate

Offering commentary and analysis from Washington, Oregon, and Idaho, The Cascadia Advocate is the Northwest Progressive Institute's uplifting perspective on world, national, and local politics.

Thursday, November 7th, 2019

Thursday ballot counting update: Eyman’s 976 slides, Sawant gains, R‑88 vote gets tighter

Good evening! Here’s the lat­est devel­op­ments in the 2019 gen­er­al elec­tion, which remains an elec­tion in progress until the bal­lots are counted.

Ini­tia­tive 976

Tim Eyman’s I‑976 lost ground for the sec­ond day in a row.

Fresh­ly tab­u­lat­ed bal­lots pushed the NO vote statewide up to 46.08% and brought the yes share of the vote down to 53.92%. In King Coun­ty, the NO on I‑976 vote climbed above 58% to 58.32%. We could see it sur­pass 59% tomorrow.

Six coun­ties are cur­rent­ly vot­ing I‑976 down: King, San Juan, Jef­fer­son, What­com, Thurston, and Island. Thurston and Island joined the NO camp yes­ter­day after favor­ing I‑976 by very slight mar­gins on Elec­tion Night.

Clal­lam Coun­ty might be the next to flip. The yes vote in I‑976 is down to 50.67%. The yes vote was 52.12% on Elec­tion Night.

Mean­while, in Pierce and Sno­homish coun­ties, the yes vote shrank. In Sno­homish Coun­ty, late bal­lots have pushed the yes vote under six­ty percent.

In Kit­sap Coun­ty, the yes vote has dwin­dled to 52.64%.

The Keep Wash­ing­ton Rolling coali­tion may not wind up defeat­ing I‑976 at the bal­lot, but when all of the bal­lots have been count­ed, Eyman’s mar­gin is going to be a lot less impres­sive than it was on Elec­tion Night.

Eyman had pre­vi­ous­ly pre­dict­ed a 65% yes vote in every sin­gle coun­ty plus pas­sage in Seat­tle, nei­ther of which is happening.

Ref­er­en­dum 88/Initiative 1000

Ini­tia­tive 1000, the oth­er statewide ini­tia­tive on the bal­lot, is still being reject­ed as of today’s count. But it’s not as los­ing by as much as it was on Elec­tion Night.

The Approved vote climbed to 48.83% statewide today, up from 48.23% on Elec­tion Night. The mea­sure is pass­ing in the same four coun­ties that made up the ini­tial NO on I‑976 bloc (King, Jef­fer­son, San Juan, What­com) and fail­ing every­where else. As with I‑976, right wing turnout in Pierce and Sno­homish coun­ties is the dif­fer­ence mak­er in the statewide vote.

King Coun­ty is enthu­si­as­ti­cal­ly approv­ing Ini­tia­tive 1000.

61.84% of vot­ers in King are cur­rent­ly in the Approved camp.

“We have not con­ced­ed this race and we are con­tin­u­ing to watch the votes as they come in,” Wash­ing­ton Fair­ness Coali­tion man­ag­er Cheri­ka Carter said in a state­ment. “Bal­lots across the State are still being counted.”

“This will come down to every last vote.”

Thank you all for help­ing our cam­paign Get Out The Vote to APPROVE I‑1000 via Ref­er­en­dum 88 to lev­el the play­ing field and make Wash­ing­ton a more equi­table state with fair­ness and oppor­tu­ni­ties for all! Whether you phone banked, knocked on doors, shared our social media posts, or told a friend to tell a friend to vote to Approve I‑1000, you helped us move towards a more equi­table change in Wash­ing­ton State, and we are this close because of you. Thank you!”

“Our work as a coali­tion does not stop here, we will con­tin­ue to fight and advo­cate for pol­i­cy that will uplift all of us and improve the lives of all Wash­ing­to­ni­ans. No mat­ter what hap­pens when this elec­tion is cer­ti­fied the Wash­ing­ton Fair­ness Coali­tion is com­mit­ted to equi­ty, oppor­tu­ni­ty, and fair­ness for all Washingtonians.”

Seat­tle City Coun­cil: Kshama Sawant gains

Seat­tle City Coun­cilmem­ber Kshama Sawant, an avowed social­ist who embraces the pol­i­tics of polar­iza­tion, gained sig­nif­i­cant ground on chal­lenger Egan Ori­on today.

Ori­on pos­sessed what may have appeared to observers unfa­mil­iar with Seat­tle pol­i­tics to be a com­fort­able lead on Elec­tion Night.

That lead (once 1,714 votes) is now evap­o­rat­ing, as we expect­ed it would.

Six years ago, in her first vic­to­ri­ous cam­paign, Sawant came from behind in the late bal­lots to upset Richard Con­lin and secure a place on the Seat­tle City Council.

It appears this year that Sawant could pull of a sim­i­lar feat.

On Elec­tion Night, Ori­on had 53.99% of the vote. He’s now down to 51.02%, with a sev­en hun­dred and thir­ty-nine vote advantage.

That’s hard­ly an insur­mount­able lead, and Ori­on knows it.

“Unfor­tu­nate­ly this elec­tion remains too close to call and it is going to be close,” Ori­on said in a state­ment. “Our cam­paign ran a peo­ple-pow­ered cam­paign, fund­ed by Democ­ra­cy Vouch­ers and indi­vid­ual con­tri­bu­tions that allowed us to speak with vot­ers in every neigh­bor­hood and com­mu­ni­ty across Dis­trict 3. We heard loud and clear that neigh­bors want col­lab­o­ra­tive solu­tions rather than divi­sive pol­i­tics, that cen­ters on solu­tions to our city’s chal­lenges rather than just sound bites.”

“I got into this cam­paign to give a voice in City Hall to every neigh­bor rather than rep­re­sent a nation­al move­ment, but this elec­tion became a nation­al ref­er­en­dum on mon­ey in pol­i­tics. I share the community’s con­cern about how much cor­po­rate spend­ing there was in this cam­paign. Win or lose, I am going to work to ensure our elec­tions are dri­ven by peo­ple and not big cor­po­rate spending.”

“We are hope­ful our work on the ground will pay off so that Dis­trict 3 can get the local rep­re­sen­ta­tion it deserves. Stay tuned!”

“What­ev­er the out­come of our race, it’s clear the naked attempt by Jeff Bezos to buy Seat­tle City coun­cil will back­fire in the long run,” Sawan­t’s cam­paign declared.

“We met it with a well-pre­pared unit­ed front strat­e­gy to mobi­lize work­ing-class anger into a uni­fy­ing force, push­ing even some reluc­tant labor and lib­er­al lead­ers into alliance with social­ists to fight big business.”

“This uni­ty forged will pay even big­ger div­i­dends for Seattle’s work­ing class in the months and years ahead. The role of Social­ist Alter­na­tive, with our clear analy­sis, strat­e­gy, and a polit­i­cal­ly self-con­fi­dent mem­ber­ship, was absolute­ly vital to mov­ing these wider forces into unit­ed action.”

“As the wave of social­ist elec­tion cam­paigns across the coun­try con­tin­ues to expand, our expe­ri­ence in Seat­tle should be a sober­ing warn­ing of the ruth­less­ness of big busi­ness. At the same time, there are rich lessons of how we fought back, laid the basis for fur­ther vic­to­ries for our class, and poten­tial­ly even how we came back to score a vic­to­ry over the rich­est man in the world in this election.”

“Because of Wash­ing­ton State’s mail-in bal­lot sys­tem, this elec­tion is not over. Not just because only half of the bal­lots have been count­ed, but also because 1–2% of bal­lots typ­i­cal­ly are ‘spoiled’ bal­lots, most often from vot­ers who neglect­ed to sign their bal­lot envelopes. We need to make sure the bal­lots of every work­ing per­son are ‘cured’ so they are includ­ed in this cru­cial election.”

What­com Coun­ty Executive

A hard fought race for What­com Coun­ty Exec­u­tive con­tin­ues to enthrall.

Sat­pal Sid­hu, who NPI alum Patrick Stick­ney has pre­vi­ous­ly worked for, has expand­ed his lead over rival Tony Lar­son for the coun­ty’s top job.

Sid­hu cur­rent­ly serves on the What­com Coun­ty Coun­cil and decid­ed to run for high­er office when incum­bent Jack Louws opt­ed not to seek reelection.

Louws and the coun­ty’s small city may­ors all back Lar­son, the Pres­i­dent of the What­com Busi­ness Alliance. Sid­hu is backed by Suzan Del­Bene, Rick Larsen, the Demo­c­ra­t­ic Par­ty, Wash­ing­ton Con­ser­va­tion Vot­ers, SEIU, and the Teamsters.

Oil com­pa­nies and the Asso­ci­at­ed Gen­er­al Con­trac­tors fund­ed an attack cam­paign against Sid­hu, hop­ing to deny him a vic­to­ry, but they appear to have failed.

Sid­hu was behind by six­ty-one votes on Elec­tion Night. He over­took Lar­son yes­ter­day and now leads by nine hun­dred and thir­ty-three votes.

Med­i­na levy lid lift still fail­ing, barely

A pro­posed levy to allow the City of Med­i­na to raise more mon­ey from prop­er­ty tax­es is still behind, but not by much. Yes­ter­day, the levy was los­ing by just four votes. And no, that’s not a typo! Today, the gap between No and Yes is ten.

Ten votes.

That’s it.

That’s like three house­holds of vot­ing adults.

Four hun­dred and sev­en­ty four vot­ers in the afflu­ent lake­side sub­urb cur­rent­ly sup­port the levy, while four hun­dred and eighty four vot­ers oppose it. This mea­sure is going to go down to the wire and we will con­tin­ue to keep an eye on it.

Don’t ever let any­one get away with claim­ing their vote does­n’t count. It does. Close elec­tions like this one remind us of that.

Taco­ma Port Commission

In Pierce Coun­ty, there’s a hot­ly con­test­ed race for Port Com­mis­sion between Kristin Ang and Dave Bryant. Ang is an attor­ney and envi­ron­men­tal cham­pi­on who is backed by the Pierce Coun­ty Cen­tral Labor Coun­cil, AFL-CIO, Pierce Coun­ty Democ­rats, the Sier­ra Club, and the Wash­ing­ton Con­ser­va­tion Voters.

Bryant is a Navy vet­er­an who has made infra­struc­ture improve­ments a theme of his cam­paign. They are split­ting the vote almost equally.

Ang trailed on Elec­tion Night, but she’s catch­ing up to Bryant.

As of today, she is up to 49.96% of the vote. Her deficit is just six hun­dred and five votes, com­pared to nine hun­dred and nine­ty-nine on Elec­tion Night.

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