The McGinn party at the War Room on election night.
The McGinn party at the War Room on election night.

Update: King County dropped more ballots at 7:30, nearly doubling McGinn’s lead again to 2,384. The numbers tonight:

Mayor of Seattle
Mike McGinn – 85,416 – 50.31%
Joe Mallahan – 83,032 – 48.91%

Previously: Mike McGinn has more than doubled his lead over Joe Mallahan from yesterday’s ballot drop, according to the King County elections department, and now leads by a margin of 1,209 votes.

Mayor of Seattle
Mike McGinn – 75,657 – 49.99%
Joe Mallahan – 74,448 – 49.19%

Publicola reports that 51.4% of the ballots went for McGinn compared to 48.0% for Mallahan, possibly indicating a late surge for McGinn. King County will release another drop of ballots tonight between 9pm and 10pm according to their elections blog.

Just before the results were posted today, Dominic Holden on the Slog posted statistics from the McGinn campaign showing that the ballots remaining to be counted are trending younger — a trend that favors McGinn.

This is an open thread regarding the mayoral election.

34 Replies to “McGinn Slightly Widens Lead”

  1. This is big news day. Aside from McGinn’s growing lead, it’s being reported that the potential suspect who killed Officer Brenton has been shot in Tukwila and may be dead. That’s what’s taking McGinn’s thunder right now.

      1. And you know that Tukwila is on that new Light Rail Line, so you know what that means…

        Transit is to blame!!! (Ignore the Datsun B210 behind the curtain)

  2. That’s outside of the .5% margin – if it stays there, there won’t be an automatic recount.

    Granted, we’ll still see Mallahan sue over rejected ballots, I’d imagine…

      1. That’s kind of wishful. This is a really close margin. I agree that McGinn continues to show an advantage, but I can’t imagine any candidate conceding with this sort of margin.

      2. Does anyone remember the vote margin that was reversed in the recount for the Governors race between Rossi and Gregoire? I remember the pundits saying how it was an almost unheard of margin to be reversed by a recount. Of course it took them a couple of tries :=

      3. The Dino was said to be ahead by 261 right after the election, then his margin went down to about 40; then Chris had a margin of 10, and the final decision gave her the election by 129 votes

  3. Results for Mayor of Tacoma have started to swing more firmly toward Strickland:

    Jim Merritt 13,812 48.61%
    Marilyn Strickland 14,535 51.15%

    That’s a 723 vote margin up from 369 yesterday and just over 200 on election day. Remember, the Mayor of Tacoma will most likely be an equal partner with the Mayor of Seattle on the ST board.

    The interesting thing with a recount is the number of under votes. Many of these are people you couldn’t make up there mind or just didn’t care enough to cast a vote for the position. Some number though are people that used a check mark, X, too light a pencil, etc. when intending to vote. Pierce County reports the under votes for each position. For Mayor it’s 1570 or double the difference between the two candidates. Still, it’s hard to imagine that swinging dramatically different than the rest of the votes. Counting the under vote would require a hand recount which would be really expensive and at this point paid for by the candidate requesting it.

    1. That’s really good to hear – that Strickland is getting ahead. Merritt just latched onto this berm thing without really understanding it, not the kind of thing we want from a mayor.

  4. The Seattle Times reports: “Mallahan would have to snag 52 percent of the remaining 28,500 or so estimated votes left in the race to catch up, based on the latest turnout projections.”

    Publicola reports: “Turnout, based on the number of ballots King County Elections has received and “processed,” is now around 50 percent, with around 30,000 votes processed but not counted. At most, if elections reaches their initial projection of 56 to 57 percent turnout, they have 50,000 votes left to count. If that’s true, Mallahan needs 51.2 percent of the remaining ballots to win this election; if it’s more like 30,000 outstanding, he needs around 52 percent.”

      1. If that margin grows, Mallahan has much less reason to contest those results. There aren’t too many ballots left now, they’ve counted 47.5% of ballots from registered voters. Assuming turnout is between 50-55 percent, it looks like McGinn’s about to take this. Even the rejected ballots won’t help Mallahan much.

      2. With this margin, Mallahan couldn’t effectively contest. New ballots would have to be much higher margin for Mallahan, and that’s clearly not happening.

  5. I’d say that clinches it. The younger trend of the late ballots isn’t a surprise. No doubt the grass roots campaign did it’s job of energizing young voters. Then consider that a much larger percentage of young voters are likely to live out of area but maintain their voter registration in Seattle. They might be at college or taken a job out of area but not really made a decision yet on where they want to live. I felt it would be close but in the end I thought Mallahan had it. Wrong again. Never say never when it comes to elections!

    The way I figure it King County would have to recount the vote eight times at least to have a chance. Not even the discovered ballots would work this time.

  6. There’s gonna be a lot of “inside baseball” type doufus-commenters eating sh*t over this on Publicola.

    As far I’m concerned, I’ve been wary of both of these candidates since the beginning. I viewed McGinn as the better of two poor candidates, with Mallahan distinguishing himself time and again as a complete pile thanks to his horrible speaking ability. The few times he aactually spoke for himself, he sounded like he could only repeat corporate-speak aphorisms straight out of those pop-business management books you can find at the airport bookstore. To me, someone prone to continually saying “driving solutions” and “advantaging the synergies” and “leveraging the enterprise” doesn’t really have any original ideas.

    On the other hand, this City needs an improved relationship with the State of Washington. The State has to acknowledge Seattle’s importance in the State first, but the new mayor has to do better than Greg Nickels did in working with the Leg, or at least the Gov. Early in this race, I thought McGinn might be too prickly to carry that off. But I thought the huge turning point in the race was handed to McGinn by the City Council when they voted to affirm the agreement in principle on the DBT. That gave him the opportunity to sound principled (he reiterated his opposition to the tunnel) while relenting for pragmatic reasons (didn’t want to go against the will of the people of Seattle).

    Sorry, but outside the world of comic book politics (like those that dominated the presidential race in 2004), good politicians change their positions on specific issues without being “flip-floppers.” It’s called pragmatism and it’s an intellectually honest approach to inducing learning into governance. In this race, it was McGinn’s first chance to look “reasonable” and “adaptable.” And it was the point when gap in the public opinion polling began to close for McGinn.

    On the transit side of things, I do look forward to the environmental study for West Side Link, and progress on the street car system. I look forward to continuing progress in reattaining Seattle’s once notable bike-friendliness. I might live in Burien, but Seattle is why I live here so it will be interesting to see how the city progresses under a new kind of leadership.

    1. This seems like a reasonable assessment of the situation. Seattle is why I live here too which is why I poke my nose into its affairs as often as I do. Throughout this mayoral race, it has been like a difficult child for me, but you gotta love the child all the same however much it torments you.

      Yes, I too look forward to seeing McGinn’s transit options, but I just hope he shuts up about the tunnel and I have a secret wish that he looked more like a mayor! He will not be expected to bike to city hall, so we can dispense with this for starters. The office of mayor of our great Emerald City is a dignified one and its occupants need to look mayoral and suitably dignified to hold it.

      1. “He will not be expected to bike to city hall, so we can dispense with this for starters.”

        I wouldn’t be too sure of that. I’d bet money that he bikes into city hall more often than he does not. Same with O’Brien. Seriously.

      2. Mallahan basically said this is a referendum on the tunnel, and McGinn had the advantage from the word “go”, so I’m not so sure he’ll shut up about the tunnel.

        And in terms of “look[ing] more like a mayor”? Please, have you seen Jan Drago? Or Sally Clark? Or perhaps Charlie Royer and Norm Rice? Casual comfort rules the day. Askew ties when you need them, jackets optional.

        Biking to work isn’t such a big deal, several big city mayors do it, and several big city mayors ride transit to work.

  7. Newsflash! Seattle Times publishes the editorial board’s first act of profound contrition regarding their inability to measure public consensus with, “Let’s speed up ballot counting in this state.” Notice how the word “Let’s” is used to imply a humble plea for cooperation and sharing, togetherness, hugs all round, and world peace. Counting ballots faster is certainly the issue of the day, by jonny and eh wut.

    1. I honestly don’t get why it is such a big deal to some people that we know all of the results on election night. We know most of them. Waiting a few days to know the rest is just not that big a deal. An advantage of the current system is that we know exactly when we have to get our ballots in the mail to have our votes be counted. Under the Times’ preferred system, we would not. (Sure… if you mail it two days before it will probably be there on time. Probably. But not necessarily.)

      All they would do is basically move up Election Day by a few days for most people, just for the satisfaction of having more complete results on Election Day itself. There is no point to this.

      1. Voting by mail in ballot will soon have its own excitement and suspense and traditions – at present it is still too soon after we all went to polling stations and knew that night who had won.

        Give the mail in time to work out, but perhaps as Oregon does, we should ask people to get their ballots in by election day and not have election day as the last day they could mail them in.

      2. I miss it now that close elections are no longer hanging by a chad ;-)

        I agree that the cut off has to be the postmark or drop date. Otherwise true absentee voters, like those away at college or serving in the military are at a disadvantage. As we’ve just seen, public opinion can change based on events of the last few days before election day.

    2. Newsflash! Nobody gets sarcasm! The Times editorial about speeding up the election count is a diversion. The far more pertinent story the Seattle Times hesitates to editorialize upon is their candidate losing. “heh heh. What candidate? Nothing to see here, folks. Move along. Look! Counting ballots takes too much time. Arrg.”

  8. Well, whatevs, this is a major rejection of the status quo by Seattle voters. Mallahan was the best propped up nobody candidate we’ve seen in years and people just weren’t buying. Just look at who signed on for Mallahan and you’ll have a handy list of yesterday.

    1. Yes, he would probably have become a puppet of whoever, but the relationship of the current City of Seattle establishment to both of these candidates is interesting – dread I would call it!

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