Port Angeles City Council candidate withdraws from race; declines to discuss reasons for move

Port Angeles City Council candidate withdraws from race; declines to discuss reasons for move

PORT ANGELES — Fluoridation foe Dan Bateham has withdrawn as a candidate against incumbent City Councilwoman Cherie Kidd in the Nov. 3 general election.

His name will remain on the ballot and in county and state voter guides since he withdrew too late for it to be removed.

“I extend a sincere thank-you to those that have shown me support over the last several weeks,” he said in an email to city officials and media outlets Wednesday afternoon.

He said the email was intended as the “official notification” of his withdrawal from the race.

“Good luck and best wishes to all of my fellow candidates,” Bateham said.

All other candidates listed on general election ballots that will be mailed to North Olympic Peninsula residents Oct. 14 remained viable candidates as of Thursday, election officials in Clallam and Jefferson counties said.

Bateham, at City Council meetings a frequent speaker against fluoridation of the city’s water, would not discuss the reasons behind his decision or comment on the election.

No further comment

Kidd noted Wednesday that Cody Blevins, her opponent for the Position 7 council seat in 2011, also pulled out too late for his name to be removed from the ballot.

“This puts me in the same position,” she said Wednesday after learning of Bateham’s withdrawal.

“Anyone who votes for Dan Bateham, their vote is legal.”

In 2011, Blevins received 1,654 votes, or 34 percent, to Kidd’s 3,258 votes, or 66 percent.

Bateham, a volunteer advocate and social worker for veterans, filed for the position May 15, the last day of the May 11-15 filing week.

Candidates had until Monday, May 18, to withdraw from the election in time to not be included on the general election ballot.

Now, voters must rely on media reports and word-of-mouth to discover that Bateham has withdrawn from the race.

Questionnaires from Kidd and Bateham will not appear in the North Olympic Peninsula Voter Guide published in the Oct. 16 edition of the Peninsula Daily News since Kidd is now the lone declared candidate.

But Bateham’s candidate statement will continue to be posted on Clallam County’s online voter guide, Clallam County Elections Supervisor Ken Hugoniot said.

“I would like to take it out,” he said.

“That would make sense.”

Statement in guide

It also will appear in the printed voter guide that the state Secretary of State’s Office will mail to Clallam County voters beginning Oct. 9 that will include legislative races and statewide ballot measures and advisory votes.

Hugoniot said he will check with the Secretary of State’s Office about changing the contents of the voter guide and pamphlet for future candidates who withdraw after the deadline.

The deadline for the printed pamphlet was more than a week ago, he added.

The printed pamphlets typically show up in mailboxes Oct. 17, county Auditor Shoona Riggs said Thursday.

The voter guide that Jefferson County voters will receive will not include statements from local candidates, Elections Supervisor Betty Johnson said Thursday.

She said Jefferson County opted out because of the cost — about $1,000 distributed among the districts that are on the ballot.

“The majority of voters have access to the Internet, to the online guide,” Johnson said.

Clallam County’s participation will cost about $8,000, Riggs said Thursday.

Allyson Ruppenthal, state deputy director of elections, said that if Bateham were to receive more votes than Kidd, he could take office even though he renounced his candidacy.

Bateham said that’s exactly what he would do.

“If people voted me in because they wanted change for whatever reason, I would take office and do the best of my ability for the people of the city,” Bateham said.

“I’m not a politician, I hate politics, but I care about the people in the city.”

________

Senior Staff Writer Paul Gottlieb can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 5060, or at [email protected]

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