At 8:15 tonight the first results of the August primary will be posted. Turnout has been estimated at 30%, but as of tonight only 15% of registered voters have returned ballots. In keeping with tradition most everywhere, the initial results are usually the least progressive on urbanist issues, with decent trending in our direction thereafter. And results may not be known for days, with Kshama Sawant’s slow bleed of Richard Conlin being the most recent example.

The unfortunate tensions in the progressive community between pro-development urbanists and social justice urbanists may also lead to very unpredictable results, so there will be much to watch. Primaries may often seem boring, but they occasionally come in with a bang, elevating the Mallahans and McGinns of the world and sending the sitting Mayor packing for Harvard. And in any case, a 47-candidate free for all and unprecedented district elections leave a little something for everyone to analyze tonight.  So go at it! We’ll be liveblogging off-and-on with any interesting observations.

Follow the results here. 

8:03: As SounderBruce points out, Snohomish County results are posted here.

8:04: As always, follow the Stranger crew doing what they do best: election party pub crawls!

8:07: On Twitter, follow #seaelex for the latest news and gossip.

8:15 FIRST DROP. Bolded are STB endorsed candidates

  • District 1: Braddock 29%, Herbold 27%, Tavel 19%, Thomas 10%
  • District 2: Harrell 62%, Morales 24%, Farris 13%
  • District 3: Sawant 50%, Banks 35%, Hearne 10%, Beach 2%
  • District 4: Johnson 33%, Maddux 23%, Godden 21%, Provine 14%
  • District 5: Juarez 38%, Brown 21%, Watkins 14%, Lethin 8%,Toledo 6%, Elizalde 6%, Dash 5%
  • District 6: O’Brien 58%, Weatbrook 22%, Lisbin 14%
  • District 7: Bagshaw 76%, Zech-Artis 13%, Hartmann 10%
  • At-Large 8: Burgess 48%, Grant 28%,  Roderick 16%, Persak 7%
  • At-Large 9: Gonzalez 64%, Bradburd 15%, Bassok 9%, Tobin 9%

8:26: Quick hits. Godden is the only threatened incumbent, with Johnson a clear winner and Maddux and Godden too close to call. Banks is consolidating the anti-Sawant vote, but that isn’t likely to be anywhere near enough. Braddock and Herbold will almost surely face off in D1. Roderick’s showing is disappointing, and Grant looks to have successfully ridden Sawant’s coattails and consolidated the rent control vote. Bradburd didn’t come close, and Gonzalez will cruise to election in November.

8:43: I agree with Erica’s basic analysis.

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The neighborhood pitchforks are blunt. Urbanists look to have survived the night, with candidates like Bradburd losing badly. The interesting races to watch will be D1, where Braddock and Herbold will likely go neck and neck, and Grant vs. Burgess, which will likely be a very ugly contest.

17 Replies to “Primary Election Liveblog”

  1. Understandably, there hasn’t been much talk about the suburban races. The Snohomish County Executive race might be a little interesting to those following ST3 expansion, with the diversion of Link to Paine Field being a major issue that ST is going to have to address.

    Most of the candidates on the primary ballot seemed to be in favor of light rail expansion (Lovick, Somers and Deal). The latter holds some interesting views on using a fleet of “flex vans” to feed commuter buses instead of the local buses we have now.

  2. Gonzalez-Bradburd is on pace to be a 4:1 beatdown. Voters are thoroughly rejecting NIMBYism.

    1. Indeed, the math is clear that Bradburd lost by a huge margin even among single-family homeowners. O’Brien, Burgess, and the mayor jumped the gun in assuming the pitchforks spoke for the single-family neighborhoods.

      1. >> O’Brien, Burgess, and the mayor jumped the gun in assuming the pitchforks spoke for the single-family neighborhoods.

        I could have told you that. Personally, that is my biggest objection to the statements made, especially by the mayor. There is no reason to weigh in now. It is summer, for heaven’s sake. Half the town is out camping or out traveling or otherwise occupied by other things. The only people who have weighed in to the debate are wonks and hotheads (myself included). Those who favor the report were basically quiet. No sense writing the mayor, we figured, since we like the report. So of course they got a bunch of negative letters. The mayor, especially, should have just waited. He should have waited until after the election, and after folks got a good chance to figure out what it all meant, instead of assuming that Danny Westneat is a housing expert, economist, or soothsayer.

        But yeah, I agree, this is not a great night for those who think HALA is a bad idea. Provine made this the focus of his campaign. From the very beginning, he focused on preserving existing zoning laws in the SFH areas. He campaigned hard — he sent me a lot of emails and I saw a lot of signs. But he ended up in fourth. Fourth! Ha, he got his ass kicked. In a primary election, which tends to favor older, more conservative, more passionate voters (the type you would assume would flock to his message) he got less than 14%.

        Those that think this city is dominated by voters who favor existing zoning laws are in for a big surprise. There is a silent majority in this town and that silent majority is a lot more receptive to the HALA proposals than our elected officials might think.

  3. Roderick looks like a victim of timing. Burgess’ minor flaws and Roderick’s extra superbness became visible only a few days ago after many people had already voted, so some of Burgess’ votes probably would have gone to Roderick if it had been earlier, but they didn’t so Roderick is coming in third.

    1. Agreed. I made a last minute change from Burgess to Roderick but had been the fence about both earlier though leaning Burgess.

    2. This is where hack pundits like myself make the observation that Roderick voters may have cast their votes late.

    3. I agree completely. Roderick’s streetcar proposal was nutty. I lost a lot of respect for him after that. He failed to get any newspaper or major blog endorsements, making him seem even more nutty. He did have the support of former mayor McGinn, but let’s face it, he is a bit nutty, too (and I voted for him).

      But then he made a very articulate, very well thought out statement on HALA. In my opinion, he nailed it. He nailed it better than anyone else. That got my vote, but I voted very late. I figure he can always roll back his streetcar proposal (once someone takes a good look at it and realizes it can’t possibly work) but voting for HALA is a lot more straightforward. I think it is a lot more important because each council member will have an important vote in the process. In other words, nothing will ever come of the “hundreds of miles of streetcar” idea, but another vote for HALA could make all the difference.

      There could be a last second trend towards him, but I doubt it will make that much difference. He is way behind, and I don’t think there was enough press on his statements. I think this blog did the best reporting on the issue, but this isn’t read as much as say, The Stranger, let alone The Seattle Times. In both cases, folks probably just went with the endorsements, if they paid any attention to the papers. If Roderick had picked up the endorsement of The Stranger, then I think he could have made it to the general election, but I think instead he will be a distant third.

      1. I think this captured my take perfectly. I was all set to vote Burgess, and had Roderick pigeonholed as heart-in-the-right-place-but-actual-proposals-are-batty after his streetcar bit. But the various HALA news broke in the last week, and I ended up filling in the oval next to Roderick after all.

        I definitely vote Burgess assuming Grant takes the #2 position for the general.

  4. I don’t think Burgess is in too much trouble. Although he’s flirting around the 50% threshold for vulnerability, Grant is still twenty points back. An upset is conceivable, but not likely.

    Sawant is really in about the same shape as Burgess at 50% of the vote. How can anyone credibly say Burgess/Grant is competitive while also claiming that Banks “isn’t likely to be anywhere near enough” to Sawant, even though Banks is five points closer than Grant? My take is that both incumbents have races on their hands, but are both heavily favored to win.

    As for Godden, she’s toast regardless of the final nominating tally.

    1. Why are you assuming 100% of Roderick voters will go to Grant? I voted for Roderick and I’ll be switching to Burgess for the general as I’m sure are many others. Burgess is safe.

    2. Technically, there are no incumbents in any of these races. But I don’t think people view it that way. With that in mind, if you pull about 50% in the primary like this, you are in trouble. Generally speaking, people are voting for or against the incumbent. There are plenty of exceptions — sometimes the primary has folks on either end of the spectrum with the incumbent in the middle — but generally it is not a good sign.

      Conlin only took around 50% of the vote in the primary, and it wasn’t a good sign. His two opponents were very different. But Conlin had made many enemies. He pushed for increased density, so the neighborhood preservationists opposed him. He pushed for the SR 99 tunnel, so The Stranger hated him. He got bit by both ends, but he also ran a terrible campaign. I’ve never seen a candidate get out hustled so bad. Maybe it was overconfidence, or maybe he was just tired of all the bullsh** in this town. So a much more active, much more energetic Sawant managed to squeak out a victory.

      I doubt that this will happen in either of the other two races. It could, but I doubt it will.

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