Politicians begin filing for office in Clark County

Craig Pridemore among first through the door

By Lauren Dake, Columbian political writer


Updated: May 12, 2014, 7:35 PM


Candidate filing week starts across state

OLYMPIA (AP) — This is filing week in Washington, when candidates can officially enter the election race. They have until the close of business Friday to decide whether to campaign.

This year’s ballot includes all 10 U.S. House seats, including the open seat in the 4th District in Eastern Washington where Doc Hastings is retiring, the secretary of state’s office said.

Also on the ballot are all 98 members of the state House, about half of the 49-member Senate and four state Supreme Court seats, including the seat of retiring Justice Jim Johnson.

There are 162 state offices open and many more positions handled by county auditors.

The ballot order will be determined at a drawing in the secretary of state’s office at the end of filing week. There are no U.S. Senate or statewide executive offices up for election this year. There are two initiatives on the ballot, both dealing with background checks on gun sales.

Candidate filing week kicked off Monday with a steady stream of candidates making their bids official.

Early Monday morning at the Clark County elections office, Democrat Craig Pridemore filed his much-expected paperwork to run for county commissioner. Republican Jeanne Stewart, also vying for the seat vacated by former Commissioner Steve Stuart, filed too.

Nonpartisan Shane Gardner and Republican Chuck Atkins, two candidates running to succeed retiring Clark County Sheriff Garry Lucas, filed Monday morning. Shortly after, Republican John Graser also threw his name into the ring for the hotly contested sheriff’s race.

Bob Dingethal, a Democrat hoping to unseat U.S. Rep. Jaime Herrera Beutler, R-Camas, turned in his paperwork. Herrera Beutler did the same.

State Rep. Brandon Vick, R-Vancouver, filed to seek re-election, while Democrat Mike Briggs and Republican John Ley both filed to run against Vick.

State Rep. Paul Harris, R-Vancouver, also filed to run for re-election.

Many of the candidates who filed Monday had already announced they would seek an elected position.

Cathie Garber, the elections supervisor for Clark County, said the process was going smoothly and as expected on Monday. She urged candidates not to wait until the last minute Friday to file.

Statewide, 10 U.S. House seats, the entire state House and half of the state Senate seats are up for election. In addition to the county commissioner seat and sheriff’s post, Clark County will hold elections this year for auditor, clerk, prosecutor and assessor.

The filing fees are 1 percent of the annual salary for the position. To file for the seat held by Herrera Beutler, it’s $1,740; for a legislative seat, it’s $421.06; for the Supreme Court, it’s $1,675.05, according to the secretary of state’s office. The primary is Aug. 5 and the general election is Nov. 4.

In Clark County alone, there are 32 open seats, along with 247 precinct committee officer openings for both the Republican and Democratic parties.

On Monday afternoon, Trevor Winton, 31, was filing for precinct committee officer position No. 460 for the Republican Party. His wife and two young children were there as he filed.

“I’ve learned in order to have a say, you have to get involved,” he said.

For more information or to keep track of who is filing, visit www.clarkvotes.org.