Peninsula counties both over 80 percent voter turnout

Clallam just over 82 percent; Jefferson almost at 89 percent

Voter turnout swelled to 88.93 percent in Jefferson County — the second highest in the state — and 82.45 percent in Clallam County after another count of ballots on Tuesday.

Jefferson County had 24,636 ballots returned out of the 27,702 provided voters, while Clallam County had 48,902 ballots returned out of 57,691 provided.

The statewide turnout was 82.63 percent. Jefferson County’s turnout was the highest of any county except San Juan, which tallied an 89.37 percent turnout.

Jefferson County’s next count will be by 4 p.m. Friday. On Tuesday, the Auditor’s Office estimated 287 ballots left to be counted. Clallam County will count an estimated 300 ballots by 4:30 p.m. Thursday.

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

Clallam County, in which a majority of voters favored the Joe Biden-Kamala Harris ticket for president, now has the longest active streak in the nation of predicting the presidential winner, having done so since 1980, according to the New York Times. As of Tuesday, Biden had won 50.17 percent of the vote to President Donald Trump’s 46.87 percent.

But Republicans had a strong showing in other races in Clallam County.

Loren Culp has pulled ahead of Gov. Jay Inslee by 219 votes, 50.14 percent to 49.68 percent. Matt Larkin is favored over Bob Ferguson for attorney general by 308 votes, 50.27 percent to 49.62 percent. Sue Kuehl Pederson has polled 186 more votes than Hilary Franz for state commissioner of public lands, 50.14 percent to 49.74 percent.

In Clallam County, Republicans also surged in the races for the 24th Legislative District in Clallam County. Brian Pruiett has won 38 more votes than Rep. Steve Tharinger for the Position 2 state representative contest, winning 49.99 percent to Tharinger’s 49.91 percent. Connie Beauvais has come within 238 votes of matching Sen. Kevin Van De Wege’s tally for state Senate, earning 49.7 percent of the vote to his 50.2 percent.

Sue Forde had 552 votes less than Rep. Mike Chapman in the Position 1 state representative race, garnering 49.37 percent to his 50.54 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, 54.2 percent to Beauvais’ 45.72 percent; Chapman’s 54.29 percent to Forde’s 45.62 percent; and Tharinger’s 53.77 percent to Pruiett’s 46.14 percent.

In the Jefferson County commission race for the District 2 seat, Heidi Eisenhour won 57.79 percent of the vote to Lorna Smith’s 39.68 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 52.17 percent of the vote compared to Patti Morris’ 47.48 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: No. 1, which makes the Office of the Prosecuting Attorney non-partisan; No. 2, a housekeeping measure to clarify Article IV, Section 4.10; and No. 4, which changes the system of electing county commissioners to one in which they are to be nominated by the district and elected by the voters countywide.

Rejected were No. 3, which would have changed the frequency of Charter Review elections from five years to eight years; No. 5, which would have made the office of the director of the Department of Community Development an appointed position; and No. 6, which would have lowered the number of signatures required to file an initiative petition for repeal of the Clallam County Charter from 35 percent to 20 percent of the number of voters who voted for governor in the last statewide election.

A replacement four-year Educational Programs and Operations levy for the Port Angeles School District passed with 60.12 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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