Toshiko Hasegawa introduces Elizabeth Warren
Toshiko Hasegawa introduces Senator Elizabeth Warren at one of her final campaign events of 2020, which was held at Seattle Center (Photo: Andrew Villeneuve/NPI)

In last night’s ini­tial Elec­tion Night returns, as we dis­cussed here on The Cas­ca­dia Advo­cate, the clos­est Port of Seat­tle Com­mis­sion race was between incum­bent Peter Stein­brueck and chal­lenger Toshiko Grace Hasegawa for Posi­tion #4. With 22.24% of bal­lots count­ed, Stein­brueck held a small 1,537 vote lead, and we assessed that Hasegawa might over­take Stein­brueck in the late ballots.

It took less than twen­ty-four hours for that pro­jec­tion to be fulfilled.

As of this after­noon’s bal­lot drop, Hasegawa is now out in front, hav­ing acquired a slim two hun­dred and sev­en­ty-five vote lead over Steinbrueck.

A total of 361,615 votes have now been tab­u­lat­ed in King Coun­ty. There are 1,400,321 eli­gi­ble vot­ers in the elec­tion for Port races.

King Coun­ty Elec­tions has esti­mat­ed that turnout may reach 46% for this Novem­ber phase of the elec­tion cycle, which would mean just over 644,000 votes tab­u­lat­ed pri­or to cer­ti­fi­ca­tion. If King Coun­ty Elec­tions’ esti­mate proves true, we are only just over halfway done with tab­u­lat­ing this elec­tion’s votes.

If you haven’t been pay­ing close atten­tion to this race for Port Com­mis­sion, here’s our primer from yes­ter­day about the matchup.

Steinbrueck vs. Hasegawa: The contest for Position #4

Stein­brueck is enthu­si­as­tic about reduc­ing pol­lu­tion and elec­tri­fy­ing the Port’s oper­a­tions. He con­sid­ers him­self a firm envi­ron­men­tal­ist (espe­cial­ly in his cre­ation of the Port’s first “tree inven­to­ry”) and favors equi­table access to jobs and appren­tice­ship pro­grams and work­ing to achieve cli­mate jus­tice at all lev­els with the wan­ing of the pan­dem­ic. He has been crit­i­cized as out of touch fol­low­ing sev­er­al exchanges with activists and oth­er local officials.

Hasegawa is the daugh­ter of State Sen­a­tor Bob Hasegawa and has pre­vi­ous­ly served on numer­ous boards on behalf of his­tor­i­cal­ly mar­gin­al­ized com­mu­ni­ties. She has also served as Exec­u­tive Direc­tor of the Wash­ing­ton State Com­mis­sion on Asian Pacif­ic Amer­i­can Affairs since late 2018. She con­sid­ers exist­ing fund­ing for mit­i­ga­tion of Port activ­i­ties for adverse­ly affect­ed com­mu­ni­ties “a drop in the buck­et” and wants sig­nif­i­cant expan­sion of the program.

Toshiko Hasegawa introduces Elizabeth Warren
Toshiko Hasegawa intro­duces Sen­a­tor Eliz­a­beth War­ren at one of her final cam­paign events of 2020, which was held at Seat­tle Cen­ter (Pho­to: Andrew Villeneuve/NPI)

Like for­mer pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Eliz­a­beth War­ren, who she intro­duced at her final Seat­tle cam­paign appear­ance last year, Hasegawa has pro­posed a Blue New Deal spe­cif­ic to the needs of the Port and the com­mu­ni­ty it serves, with an empha­sis on improved trans­porta­tion (both via rail and roads), elec­tri­fi­ca­tion, off­shore wind and solar ener­gy instal­la­tions and union jobs.

Updated numbers are due tomorrow afternoon

King Coun­ty Elec­tions’ next bal­lot drop will be released some­time tomor­row after­noon, like­ly between 4 and 5 PM Pacif­ic Time. That drop will be much larg­er than today’s, with a sig­nif­i­cant num­ber of bal­lots expect­ed to be tallied.

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