League of Women Voters sets Clallam candidate forums this month, July

Peninsula Daily News

The League of Women Voters plans a series of pre-primary election forums in Clallam County this month and in July.

The forums will focus on the three-candidate races for the 24th Legislative District for the seat now held by Steve Tharinger and for Clallam County commissioner District 3, as well as the four-candidate race for the 6th Congressional District seat now held by Derek Kilmer of Gig Harbor.

The primary election Aug. 5 will winnow candidates to two each in those three races. The top two vote-getters will compete in the Nov. 4 general election.

Primary ballots will be mailed to registered voters July 18.

At the forums, each candidate will have three minutes for opening remarks.

A moderator will ask questions of the candidates, and questions also will be taken from the audience, said Linda Benson, league member.

All candidates will have the opportunity to answer each question, she said.

After the forum, time will be allowed for those attending to speak with the candidates individually.

All have said they will attend, except for Kilmer, who has said he may send a representative in his place, Benson said.

Forums are planned in Sequim and Port Angeles on the 24th District race, in Forks and Port Angeles on the county commission race, and in Port Angeles on the 6th Congressional District race.

The schedule of forums is:

■ Sunday, state representative, District 24 — 1:30 p.m. to 3:30 p.m., Sequim Transit Center, 190 W. Cedar St.

■ Wednesday, June 25, state representative, District 24 — 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Port Angeles Senior Center, 328 E. Seventh St.

■ Wednesday, July 9, county commissioner, District 3 — 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Forks Concerned Citizens (across from Thriftway, behind Sunshine and Rainbows) in Forks

■ Thursday, July 10, 6th Congressional District — 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Port Angeles Senior Center

■   Wednesday, July 16, county commissioner, District 3 — 6 p.m. to 8 p.m., Port Angeles Senior Center

Tharinger, a Democrat from Sequim, is seeking a third term representing the 24th District, which covers Clallam and Jefferson counties and part of Grays Harbor County.

Tharinger is challenged by Republican Thomas Greisamer of Moclips in Grays Harbor County and Dr. Stafford Conway, a Sequim neurologist who filed as a Libertarian.

No incumbent is running for the Clallam County commission, District 3 seat since the longtime holder of that seat, Mike Doherty, is not seeking re-election.

Vying to represent the western third of the county — from Valley Creek in west Port Angeles to the Pacific Ocean — are Sissi Bruch, a Democrat and a Port Angeles City Council member; Bill Peach, a Forks Republican and retired forester and Quillayute Valley Parks and Recreation District commissioner; and Bryon Monohon, mayor of Forks, who filed as an independent.

Freshman Congressman Kilmer, a Democrat and native of Port Angeles, is challenged in his bid for a second term by W. “Greybeard” McPherson of Port Angeles, who stated no party preference; Republican Marty McClendon of Gig Harbor; and Green Party candidate Douglas Milholland of Port Townsend.

Forum moderators will be league members: June 22 and July 16, Vicci Ruden; June 25, Anne Murray; July 9, Norma Turner; and July 10, Bertha Cooper.

Also at each of the forums will be the opportunity to file a change-of-address form that will go to the county Auditor’s Office.

“Ballots are not forwarded by the post office,” Benson said, so registered voters who have moved since the last election must notify the Auditor’s Office of the change to ensure the mailed ballots reach them.

Also on the primary ballot are two partisan races that will not serve as elimination rounds for the general election.

State Rep. Kevin Van De Wege, D-Sequim, is unopposed but is on the ballot, as are the two Republican candidates for the Clallam County prosecuting attorney’s race, William Payne and Mark Nichols.

Recent state law determined that all partisan offices must have a primary, said County Auditor Patty Rosand, unless the election is filling an unexpired term of office and only one candidate remains after the deadline for withdrawal from the ballot.

“Consequently, partisan offices appear on the primary ballot, regardless of the term of office or the number of candidates in a race,” Rosand said in an email Friday.

The league will announce at a later date forums for the general election.

In addition to the races on the primary ballot, November contests will include races for the county director of community development, judge in Clallam County District Court 1, the county Charter Review Commission, state Supreme Court justice Position 7 and state initiatives.

The league plans an information meeting on gun initiatives in September, Benson said.

At all forums preceding the general election — not those before the primary — candidates for the Charter Review Commission will be invited to introduce themselves.

Five commissioners will be elected from each of the three county commissioner districts during the general election to review the county’s charter, which is its “constitution.”

Last modified: June 16. 2014 6:17PM
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