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Monday, March 4, 2024
March 4, 2024

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Clark County League of Women Voters sets candidate forums ahead of primary

Events serve as job interview for voters, League official says

By , Columbian staff writer

Similar to traditional employment procedures, appointing someone to political office requires an extensive and thoughtful vetting process. After all, it’s a job that influences thousands of lives.

The League of Women Voters, a nonpartisan nonprofit, is kicking off its candidate forums in preparation for the Aug. 2 primary election. These discussions are different from a typical political debate, because candidates are not allowed to provide a rebuttal to others’ statements.

“This is a way that people can say, ‘Hey, we want to interview you for this job and see if you have the talents, abilities, the dedication, the determination, (and) the passion to serve,’ ” said Dee Anne Finken, Clark County League of Women Voters communication chair.

None of the candidates running for local and federal office declined the nonprofit’s invitation to participate, Finken said. Each forum will be broadcast live on Clark/Vancouver Television’s government access channel and will also be recorded for later viewing.

Candidate breakdown

Legislative District 18 Position 2

6:30 p.m. June 22

Duncan Camacho – Democrat

Brad Benton – Republican

John Ley – Republican

Greg Cheney – Republican

Clark County Council District 5

6:30 p.m. June 22

Don Benton

Richard Rylander

Sue Marshall

Rick Torres

Clark County Council District 1

6:30 p.m. June 23

Hector Hinojosa

Doug Coop

Glen Yung

Clark County Council District 2

6:30 p.m. June 23

Chartisha Roberts

Michelle Belkot

Kim Hamlik

Clark County Sheriff

6:30 p.m. June 23

Rey Reynolds

John Horch

David Shook

Legislative District 17 Positions 1 and 2

6:30 p.m. July 6

Kevin Waters – Republican

Hannah Joy – Republican

Terri Niles – Democrat

Anthony Ho – Republican

Paul Harris (incumbent) – Republican

Justin Forsman – Independent Republican

Joe Kear – Democrat

Earl Bowerman – Republican

Clark Public Utilities District 2

6:30 p.m. July 6

Don Steinke

Nancy Barnes

Carol Dillin

Themes that will be discussed during the forums cannot be disclosed to the public to ensure fairness for each candidate, seeing as the events occur on different days. All participants will receive the topics two days before their scheduled forum, giving them the same opportunity to gather an authentic response.

Candidates will be in the same room during the respective forums yet will not have an in-person audience.

For 3rd Congressional District contenders, moderators will direct individual interviews — slated to be 15 minutes long — due to the long list of challengers presenting scheduling challenges. These interviews will be available on CVTV closer to the election.

Clark County Elections will begin sending out ballots on July 15. Voters must have their ballots postmarked by Aug. 2 if returning through the mail or deposited by 8 p.m. at a drop box the same day. Learn how to register to vote on the county’s elections website.

Columbian staff writer