Peninsula Daily News
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Stanko, 66, suspended his campaign after members of the county Democratic Party voted June 10 to endorse fellow Democrat Wendy Davis, 47, for the position.
Despite his withdrawal, Stanko’s name remains on the Aug. 5 primary ballot. Also on the ballot for the sheriff’s race is Ken Przygocki, 63, a retired State Patrol officer who filed with no party affiliation.
One candidate will be eliminated in the primary and move on to the Nov. 4 general election.
“If I ran, it would be as a moderate, independent Democrat who has extensive management experience,” Stanko said Thursday.
“I entered the race with the expectation that I would receive the endorsement of the Democratic Party, but it did not turn out that way, and I wasn’t going to continue without some support,” he added.
On June 10, members of the Jefferson County Democratic Party endorsed Davis, a Democrat and former Bremerton and Poulsbo police officer. The motion carried with 72 votes; 29 were opposed.
Davis said Friday she didn’t expect the endorsement but was glad to receive it, adding that she would not have withdrawn if Stanko had been endorsed.
Said Stanko: “I had already spent $7,000 of my own money, and I wasn’t willing to spend any more to make it to the general election.”
Stanko — who retired as a lieutenant from the Fullerton, Calif., Police Department in 2004 — said he would not actively campaign for the primary election because “I’m not willing to fight an uphill battle knowing the Democrats have picked my opponent.”
However, “if the voters pick me to go forward, I would consider running in the November election,” he added.
He has not participated in pre-primary debates but did answer requests for information and is included in the North Olympic Peninsula Primary Voter Guide, distributed with Friday’s Peninsula Daily News.
Stanko was selected the 2012 Business Leader of the Year by the Jefferson County Chamber of Commerce.
He is past president of Port Townsend Rotary, a driver for Ecumenical Christian Helping Hands Organization — known as ECCHO — as well as a member of the United Good Neighbors board of directors, a member of Calvary Church and a participant in the work of the Community Outreach Association Shelter Team, or COAST, at the Port Townsend homeless shelter.
Primary election ballots were mailed to registered voters Wednesday.