Jefferson County voter turnout highest in state

Clallam votes Democrat in presidential race but GOP in many others

Jefferson County’s voter turnout in the Nov. 3 general election is now the highest in the state, with nearly 90 percent of registered voters returning their ballots.

Both Jefferson County, with 89.96 percent turnout, and Clallam County, which had reached 85.45 percent last week, beat the statewide percentage of 83. 61 as of Friday.

San Juan County had the second highest voter turnout in the state by Friday with 89.37 percent.

The Jefferson County Auditor’s Office’s count on Friday will be the last until certification on Nov. 24. The office reported six ballots remained after it counted 24,922 ballots of the 27.702 provided voters.

Clallam County Auditor’s Office plans a count of the remaining 100 ballots on Monday after completing on Thursday the tally of 49,295 ballots of 57,691 provided voters.

Election outcomes statewide were unchanged as were those for the 24th Legislative District after the most recent count of ballots.

While the majority of Jefferson County voted a straight Democratic ticket, Clallam County mixed it up, going for Democrat Joe Biden for president with 50.17 percent to 46.86 percent for President Donald Trump, but giving a majority to Republican gubernatorial candidate Loren Culp, 50.14 percent to Gov. Jay Inslee’s 49.58 percent, favoring Republican Matt Larkin to Attorney General Bob Ferguson, 50.26 percent to 49.63 percent, and Republican Sue Kuehl Pederson for state Commissioner of Public Lands, 50.14 percetn over 49.7 percent for winning incumbent Hilary Franz, a Democrat.

Clallam County mirrored national results in the presidential race — and is the lone bellwether in choosing the president in the nation now — but Inslee, Ferguson and Franz won statewide.

Clallam County voters gave strong support to Republicans running for 24th Legislative District seats, with Brian Pruiett winning a slight majority in the county.

In Clallam County, Pruiett now polls at 49.99 percent to incumbent Rep. Steve Tharinger’s 49.91 percent. Sue Forde has 49.37 percent to Rep, Mike Chapman’s 50.55 percent and Connie Beauvais has 49.69 percent to Sen, Kevin Van De Wege’s 50.21 percent.

Beauvais, Forde and Pruiett took the majority in Grays Harbor County, which, with Clallam and Jefferson counties, makes up the 24th Legislative District, while Jefferson County went Democratic in every partisan race.

In the district-wide vote, the incumbents kept their seats by large margins: Van De Wege, 54.1 percent to Beauvais’ 45.82 percent; Chapman’s 54.2 percent to Forde’s 45.72 percent; and Tharinger’s 53.68 percent to Pruiett’s 46.23 percent.

In the Jefferson County commission race for the District 2 seat, Heidi Eisenhour won 57.71 percent of the vote to Lorna Smith’s 39.67 percent.

Clallam County Superior Court Judge Lauren Erickson has retained the judgeship against her opponent, Lisa Dublin, 56.05 percent to 43.62 percent.

Rick Paschall won a seat on the Clallam County Public Utility commission with 52.13 percent of the vote compared to Patti Morris’ 47.53 percent. The six-year position had been filled by Dave Anderson after the late Hugh Haffner resigned. Anderson did not run for the seat.

Voters approved three of the six proposed Clallam County Charter amendments and rejected three.

A replacement four-year Educational Programs and Operations levy for the Port Angeles School District passed with 60.16 percent voter approval. The $5.6 million levy will be funded by a property tax rate of $1.50 per $1,000 of valuation.

Most district voters, including those in Clallam and Jefferson counties, backed U.S. Rep. Derek Kilmer, a Democrat, for a fifth term as the 6th Congressional District representative against Elizabeth Kreiselmaier, a Republican. Both live in Gig Harbor.

Washington’s 6th Congressional District includes Jefferson and Clallam counties, as well as the counties of Grays Harbor and Kitsap, and portions of Mason and Pierce counties.

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