Monday, February 6, 2023
Feb. 6, 2023

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Perez lead over Kent narrows in 3rd Congressional District race

Less than 6,000 votes separate Democrat, Republican opponent

By , Columbian staff writer
Published:

Washington’s 3rd Congressional District race does not have any clear winners, but the latest results show Democrat Marie Gluesenkamp Perez losing ground against challenger Republican Joe Kent, as she now leads with less than 6,000 votes.

The Washington Secretary of State’s office reported Thursday evening that Perez, D-Stevenson, had 132,161 votes, or 50.85 percent of the total, and Kent, R-Yacolt, edged close behind with 126,279 votes, or 48.58 percent of the 259,919 ballots tallied.

Clark County, the congressional district’s most populous county, continues to lean in Perez’s favor. Its round of updates Thursday showed Perez ahead with 90,693 votes, or 56.89 percent of the 159,406 votes cast, with Kent trailing with 68,713 votes, or 43.11 percent.

Perez continues to be the top vote-getter in Clark and Pacific counties. Ballot totals from Cowlitz, Lewis, Skamania, Thurston and Wahkiakum counties still favor Kent.

There are around 54,500 ballots left to count, with the 3rd District’s segment of Thurston County left undetermined. According to postings on Kent’s social media accounts, his team is hopeful that later-arriving ballots will tip Southwest Washington in his favor.

As tens of thousands more ballots remain to be counted, Secretary of State Steve Hobbs encouraged voters to be patient with ballot processing as counties face slight hiccups with the state’s election management system. In a release, the office said county election officials working to update vote totals are facing an issue with VoteWA, which is affecting workers’ ability to check signatures and process ballots.

“We understand that accuracy is important, even if it takes time,” Hobbs said.

Elections workers will continue to work through Veterans Day and into the weekend processing ballots.

Upcoming ballot tally updates from the district’s counties: Cowlitz County at 5 p.m. Friday; Clark County at 6 p.m. Friday; Lewis and Pacific counties at 4 p.m. Monday; Skamania County at 5:30 p.m. Tuesday; and Wahkiakum County at 5 p.m. Nov. 28.

Election results will be certified on Nov. 29.

Legislative races

There are tight races for both 18th Legislative District seats.

In the fight for Position 1, Republican Stephanie McClintock pulled ahead of Democrat John Zingale with 26,157 votes, or 51.18 percent of votes cast. Zingale received 24,948 votes, or 48.82 percent.

Position 2 candidate Republican Greg Cheney maintained his lead, 27,415 votes or 53.51 percent, over Democrat Duncan Camacho, who had 23,816 votes or 46.49 percent.

In the 17th District Position 1 race, Republican Kevin Waters of Stevenson maintains his lead with 25,047 votes, or 51.67 percent of total tallied votes, compared to Democrat Terri Niles of Vancouver, who has 23,362 votes or 48.19 percent. They are vying to replace two-term Republican state Rep. Vicki Kraft, who ran in the August primary to represent the 3rd Congressional District.

There was little change for incumbents seeking reelection in the 17th Legislative Position 2 and the 49th Legislative District Position 1 and Position 2 races, who will likely secure another term. The 20th Legislative District incumbents, Republicans Peter Abbarno and Ed Orcutt, ran unopposed.

Clark County Council, offices

Thursday’s round of updates did not sway previous results for three Clark County Council nonpartisan races. Glen Yung, Michelle Belkot and Sue Marshall are still maintaining their leads.

In District 1, Yung has 13,451 votes or 58.60 percent of the total votes cast, and his opponent, Hector Hinojosa, received 9,502 votes, or 41.40 percent.

Belkot’s lead for District 2 grew to 16,035 votes, or 54.40 percent of votes cast, while candidate Chartisha Roberts received 13,440 votes or 45.60 percent of votes cast.

The updated ballot count showed Marshall still ahead of former state legislator Don Benton for the District 5 seat. She had 19,001 votes, or 53.91 percent of total votes, with Benton trailing with 16,246 votes, or 46.09 percent.

Clark County Auditor Greg Kimsey will continue in his position after overwhelmingly defeating challenger Brett Simpson. Kimsey had 100,348 votes, or 69.16 percent, and Simpson received 44,750 votes, or 30.84 percent.

In the battle to replace Clark County Sheriff Chuck Atkins, John Horch held onto his lead over challenger Rey Reynolds Thursday. Horch received 85,942 votes, or 57.14 percent of votes cast, to Reynolds’ 64,451 votes or 42.86 percent.

Charter amendments

Clark County Charter Amendment 12 is now failing, which would add a preamble to the county charter. It remains close with 49.64 percent of voters in favor and 50.36 percent against.

More than 64 percent of voters approved of amendments to change the county’s process for appointing a county manager and to fill vacancies of county elected offices.

Moves to implement ranked choice voting, change the county’s initiative process and create a diversity and inclusion officer failed, as around 60 percent of voters rejected these amendments.

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