King County Elections added more than 96,600 ballots to the count today, leaving an estimated 15,000 left to tally next week. With only 133,000 left to count statewide, the midterm primary election season is about wrapped up, but a couple races are still looking like nail-biters, including one mildly scary contest down in southwest Washington.
Let's take a look as a family.
I thought the infighting between the two Trumpian candidates down in the 3rd Congressional District rendered Republican Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler safe this year, but today's ballot drop put Joe Kent within striking distance of the incumbent. He now only trails her by 257 votes. With 30,000 votes left to count in Clark County, which leans kiiiiinda blue, Herrera Beutler could maintain her lead. But....damn. If Kent pulls ahead next week, then southwest Washington will end up choosing between a Trumpian and a little-known Democratic candidate Marie Gluesenkamp Perez, who leads the race with 31% of the vote.
Speaking of Trumpians, this evening the Associated Press officially declared Matt Larkin the second-place finisher in central Washington's 8th Congressional District. He'll try to beat incumbent Democratic Rep. Kim Schrier, a pro-choice pediatrician in a purple district who has not, unlike Larkin, hidden her position on the legitimacy of the 2020 election.
Back in Seattle, Stranger-endorsed candidate and disability advocate Darya Farivar pulled well ahead of the field in Northeast Seattle's 46th Legislative District. She now leads child psychiatry advocate Lelach Rave, who spent double the money that Farivar did in the primary, by 3.5 points.
Somewhat distressingly, avuncular climate arsonist Phil Fortunato slightly increased his lead over Never Trump Republican Chris Vance in the state Senate contest over in an Auburn-area district, with Vance's support now slipping below 40%. Hard to see how investing any Democratic money into that race will yield a different result in the general.
Hopping over to the Covington area, Stranger-endorsed candidate Shukri Olow greatly increased her lead over the Republican vying for second place. Olow now leads some dude named Barry Knowles by 600 votes, which should be enough to secure her place as the top-two finisher here. Auburn City Councilmember Chris Stearns still leads the pack with 33.5% of the vote share.
The latest ballot drop was okay for Stranger-endorsed candidate Claudia Kauffman, who dropped her 65-vote lead over Kent City Councilmember Satwinder Kaur by literally one vote. The winner of this close contest will go on to face Republican Kent City Council President Bill Boyce, who is down by 2,500 votes compared to the combined Democratic total in that district, which is encouraging.
Over in Bremerton, Democratic state Sen. Emily Randall continues to enjoy an 8-point lead over Republican House Rep. Jesse Young, which is good news for anyone in Kitsap County who does not want to be represented by an anti-abortion Trumpian who would apparently rather operate his office without staff than attend the anger management trainings he'd need to complete to regain that privilege.
Up in Island County, Democratic candidate Clyde Shavers now only leads incumbent Republican Rep. Greg Gilday by five points. That's down from a seven-point lead on election night, which isn't that bad of a slide, especially against an incumbent.
Finally, today's drop was unkind to the socialists running for Congress. Jason Call, who took on Rep. Rick Larsen again this year, is still short the 5,000 votes he needs to overtake Republican Dan Matthews for the second-place spot. Meanwhile, in the race for second place in Washington's 9th Congressional district, socialist candidate Stephanie Gallardo announced that she would not move on to the general after today's drop put her 6,800 votes behind perennial Republican Doug Balser.
With less than 15k votes left to count, I’m saddened to say that our campaign will not advance to the general election.— Stephanie Gallardo for Congress WA-09 (@ElectGallardo) August 5, 2022
I’m incredibly proud of the campaign we have built and couldn’t have done it without our core team and community of volunteers 💖
Full statement to come.