As of Tuesday morning, millennials were overtaking retirement-age voters as the generation with the loudest voice in the district.
As of Tuesday morning, millennials were overtaking retirement-age voters as the generation with the loudest voice in the district.

If this weren't the first-ever December recall election in King County's history, it would be easier to feel sinisterly optimistic or decidedly pessimistic about Recall Yes leading Recall No by six points and 2,000 votes on election night. But it is, so it's not.

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One reason for optimism is that Sawant has overcome a 6-point deficit before. In the 2019 general election, she trailed Egan Orion by 8 points and ended up winning by 4 — that's a 12-point percentage swing in her favor. And though conservatives ultimately won the big races in the 2021 city elections, the progressive candidates also made up between 12 and 13 points between election night and the final tally. That said, those were all citywide races, and Bruce Harrell won D3 in the mayoral race...so it's unclear how progressive the district was feeling.

The King County Elections department stats show more than 2,000 ballots left to count from this morning, but they don't show the number of ballots voters returned after noonish today. Did enough pro-Sawant voters turn out after lunch to overcome a 2,000 vote deficit? The radio did the math based on King County's turnout projection, but, again they don't really know:

In the past, progressive votes have typically spiked on the last day, and lots of busy D3 voters tend to drop off their ballot at the very last minute. If this were a normal-ass general election, we'd feel pretty comfortable saying that D3 voters know when the fuck an election is happening — even one called between two travel holidays — and we'd express confidence in the possibility of a last-minute surge.

However, though later ballots trended younger in the last week of voting, which would presumably be better for Sawant, we weren't counting heads and asking ages at the ballot boxes today. We will know more about turnout tomorrow morning / afternoon, and that will at least give us a better sense of the share of the remaining votes Sawant would need to capture to win.

But even then — because this is a special election in the middle of December — we likely won't know just how concentrated that pro-Sawant vote will be until Thursday at 4 pm, at which point we'll probably know the end result anyway.

What we DO know is that we're all very tired of elections.

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