CLALLAM WRAPUP — Chapman, Simpson, Rohrer hold big election leads
Keith Thorpe/Peninsula Daily News
Election opponents Maggie Roth and Clallam County Commissioner Mike Chapman shake hands at the county courthouse Tuesday night after it appeared that Chapman won re-election.
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Erik Rohrer had a commanding lead over Christopher Melly for Superior Court judge.
Incumbent Ted Simpson pulled far ahead of challenger Cindy Kelly in the race for the District 3 seat on the three-member Clallam County Public Utility District board of commissioners.
Democratic state Sen. Derek Kilmer had a large lead over Republican businessman Bill Driscoll in the race to succeed veteran congressman Norm Dicks, D-Belfair, who is retiring after 36 years.
State Sen. Jim Hargrove, Rep. Kevin Van Wege and Rep. Steve Tharinger, the three Democratic legislators representing the North Olympic Peninsula in Olympia, held leads over their challengers.
U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Mountlake Terrace, who is seeking a third six-year term, held an overwhelming lead over challenger Michael Baumgartner, a first-term Republican state senator from the Spokane area.
The Clallam County Auditor's Office counted 26,870 ballots Tuesday night; 47,157 ballots had been mailed out last month.
The office had 5,481 ballots on hand but not yet counted for a voter turnout as of Tuesday of 32,351, or 65.6 percent.
Auditor Patty Rosand expects about 8,000 mail ballots to arrive before the next count at 4:30 p.m. Friday.
Rosand predicted a final voter turnout of 86 percent.
“Congratulations to Maggie on a great race,” Chapman said at the Clallam County Courthouse on Tuesday night. “I appreciate how the voters voted.”
He said it would be “a honor and a privilege” to serve as a commissioner for another term.
Chapman, an independent, is seeking his fourth four-year term as the District 2 (Port Angeles area) commissioner on the three-member board of commissioners.
Chapman, 48, had 15,290 votes, or 61.64 percent, to 9,516 votes, or 38.36 percent, for Roth, 58, a Republican. Both live in Port Angeles. It was the second try by the Roth family to defeat Chapman — he beat her husband, Terry, in the 2008 election.
Rohrer, 54 and District Court judge in Forks, had 12,210 votes, or 56.13 percent, to 9,544 votes, or 43.87 percent, for Melly, 61, the Clallam County hearing examiner, in their race to succeed retiring Ken Williams as one of the county's three Superior Court judges.
In their race for the six-year position on the PUD board, Simpson had 9,897 votes, or 57.71 percent.
Kelly had 7,252 votes, or 42.29 percent.
Simpson, 70, is the owner/manager of Angeles Electric Inc. since 1974 and has been Clallam PUD commissioner since 1985.
Kelly, 55, is the manager of the Dry Creek Water Association and a Port Angeles School Board member. This is her second try against Simpson. He defeated her in 2006.
Kilmer, 38, D-Gig Harbor, had 99,625 votes, or 58.98 percent, while Driscoll, 50, of Tacoma, had 69,283 votes, or
41.02 percent, in early voter tallies for the 6th Congressional District.
Kilmer won Dicks' endorsement early in the campaign.
The district encompasses the Olympic Peninsula — including Jefferson and Clallam counties — most of the Kitsap Peninsula and most of the city of Tacoma.
In the 24th District state legislative races, Hargrove, 59, of Hoquiam, who is seeking a fifth four-year term, led Larry Carter, 64, of Port Ludlow — who has no party preference — with 18,046 votes districtwide, or 68.75 percent to 8,203 votes, or 31.25 percent.
Van De Wege, 38, of Sequim, who is seeking a third two-year term, received 17,300 votes districtwide, or 67.39 percent, while Craig Durgan, 55, an independent, garnered 8,372 votes, or 32.61 percent.
In his bid for a second two-year term, Tharinger, 63, of Sequim, had 16,303 votes districtwide, or 62.55 percent, to 9,761 votes, or 37.45 percent, for Republican Steve Gale, 45, also of Sequim.
The 24th District encompasses Clallam and Jefferson counties and two-thirds of Grays Harbor County.
The three Democratic incumbents raised $212,337 of the $230,574 collected by all the candidates— much of it from political action committees — that were filed as of Oct. 22 with the state Public Disclosure Commission.
Hargrove raised $93,208 while Carter raised $12,935.
Tharinger raised $53,951. Gale raised $5,302.
Van De Wege, raised $65,178. Durgan, who won 18 percent of the primary election vote as a write-in candidate, said he purposely didn't raise a cent — though he said last week he did receive a $25 contribution he had yet to cash.
Van De Wege, a firefighter-paramedic with Clallam County Fire District No. 3, said he has designated more than half of his contributions to the Democratic Party.
Last modified: November 07. 2012 3:08AM