Dino Rossi trails in U.S. Senate race as count continues
November 3, 2010
By Warren Kagarise
State Senate races remain too close to call
UPDATED — 5:55 p.m. Nov. 3, 2010
Republican Dino Rossi, a Sammamish resident and former Issaquah state senator, trailed incumbent U.S. Sen. Patty Murray by about 24,800 votes Wednesday afternoon, though the number could shift in the days ahead as mail ballots reach elections offices statewide.
Murray, a Democrat in the race for a fourth term, outdistanced Rossi by 105,639 votes in populous King County, a stronghold for Democrats. Rossi could close the gap as more conservative counties report election totals.
In other races, the batch of election results released Wednesday offered little change from Election Day, even as King County Elections added about 50,000 ballots to the tally.
The tight state Senate race in the 48th Legislative District seesawed to Democrat Rodney Tom, after the incumbent lagged behind Republican challenger Gregg Bennett on Tuesday night. Tom pulled ahead by a razor-thin margin — 326 votes from more than 28,000 cast — Wednesday.
The contest, plus the race in the neighboring 41st Legislative District, could help the GOP seize control of the state Senate. The party has been in the minority since 2004.
Republican Steve Litzow, a Mercer Island city councilman, maintained a 1,568-vote lead — out of almost 36,000 cast — in the race against incumbent Democrat Randy Gordon. King County Council members appointed Gordon to the seat in January after former Sen. Fred Jarrett resigned to become deputy King County executive.
In another 41st District close race, incumbent Democrat Marcie Maxwell maintained to a lead against Republican Peter Dunbar, a Mercer Island physician, for a state House of Representatives seat. Maxwell claimed a 1,311-vote margin out almost 36,000 cast.
Democrat Ross Hunter, a 48th District representative, clung to a slim lead against Republican Diane Tebelius. Only 911 votes from the almost 28,000 cast separated the candidates.
Other House incumbents in the race to represent Issaquah in Olympia — 5th Legislative District Republicans Glenn Anderson and Jay Rodne, plus 41st District Democrat Judy Clibborn — trounced little known or under-funded candidates to cruise to re-election.
Anderson defeated Democrat David Spring in a rematch of the 2008 contest. Rodne outdistanced Sammamish Democrat Greg Hoover for the district’s other House seat. Clibborn beat Bellevue Republican Stephen Strader.
Republican Congressman Dave Reichert surged to a fourth term amid a national GOP tide, despite a spirited challenge from Democrat Suzan DelBene. Reichert, a former King County sheriff, represents Issaquah and the 8th Congressional District.
Initiative 1100, a measure to privatize the state-run liquor system backed by Issaquah-based Costco, lagged by 71,307 votes — out of more 1.5 million cast — Wednesday afternoon. Voters defeated the other liquor measure on the ballot, Initiative 1105.