PORT ANGELES — Although more votes are left to be counted, challenger Maury Modine does not expect to be able to unseat incumbent Port of Port Angeles Commissioner Connie Beauvais, he said Wednesday.
The Beaver resident conceded to Beauvais, saying he should have been better prepared for a Clallam County-wide race instead of what he thought was a West End-Port Angeles-District 3-only race when he registered as a candidate.
Beauvais was ahead 63.5 percent to 36 percent (7,044 to 3,997 votes) after the first tally Tuesday night, with 3,000 more overall votes in the all-mail election to be counted by the Auditor’s Office late Wednesday afternoon. Those totals are not reflected here because of press deadlines.
“I with I could have done better, but I wish Connie well,” said Modine, 63, a retired construction trades safety instructor.
Beauvais, completing her first term, said before learning Modine conceded that she planned to wait to declare victory until after Wednesday’s count.
“I will accept the victory,” said the Joyce resident, 68.
Modine — a Democratic Party precinct officer for Beaver and a former elected trustee for the village of Magdalena, N.M. — said he “had no idea” that the general election race was countywide. He thought it encompassed only District 3, as is the case for county board of commissioners races.
“Right off the get-go, I wasn’t prepared,” Modine said.
He should have started running a year earlier “and gotten a ground game going,” he said.
Modine did listen to three years of recorded port commission, timber advisory committee and marine advisory committee meetings, he said.
“I found out what was going on, but it was just too late,” he said.
Modine said he received about $700 in contributions from 25 to 30 individuals, did a small amount of doorbelling and made 300 to 400 calls using a voter list he obtained from the county Democratic Party.
Beauvais, who has reported $4,611 in contributions to the state Public Disclosure Commission, donated $3,000 to her campaign, had six other contributors who gave $500, and listed a $1,000 loan.
“I was in it to win it, but I really hoped that my body of work that I’ve done these past four years would really help see me through this election,” Beauvais said.
She said she was not surprised by the election results.
“My opponent really didn’t know anything about the port when he started, so it was a big learning curve,” Beauvais said.
“It is one thing to listen to the recording of a meeting, but you still have to be present,” she said, citing frequent visual presentations by staff at port commission meeting.
“You can’t see from a recording what’s actually happening.”
Beauvais said she is “thinking about” running as a Republican for a 24th District state legislative seat that is up for election in 2020.
“I have been asked a number of times, and I have been contemplating it,” she said.
“I need to consider what the possibilities are both in terms of being able to win the position and what I would hope to accomplish.”
Seats now held by state Rep. Mike Chapman of Port Angeles, state Rep. Steve Tharinger of Port Townsend and state Sen. Kevin Van De Wege of Sequim are up for election in 2020.
All are Democrats.
The district’s constituency encompasses Clallam and Jefferson counties and the northern half of Grays Harbor County.
Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 55650, or at [email protected] peninsuladailynews.com.