Local races remain unresolved as ballot count resumes for another week

November 7, 2010

By Warren Kagarise

NEW — 6 a.m. Nov. 7, 2010

King County Elections concluded four days of ballot counts Friday, but the latest batch of results did little to clarify the outcome in still-unresolved Issaquah-area races.

The elections office added 74,265 ballots to the tally Friday to bring the total number of ballots counted to 569,743. The office reports the next results at 4:30 p.m. Monday.

Since Election Day, the tight state Senate race in the 48th Legislative District seesawed to favor Democrat Rodney Tom.

The incumbent lagged behind Republican challenger Gregg Bennett on election night, but Tom has built a 1,010-vote lead in days since.

Democrat Ross Hunter, a 48th District representative, solidified a lead against Republican Diane Tebelius. The margin between the candidates increased to 1,824 votes by Friday.

The district includes the Greenwood Point and South Cove neighborhoods in Issaquah, plus parts of Bellevue, Kirkland and Redmond.

In the neighboring 41st Legislative District, Republican Steve Litzow, a Mercer Island city councilman, maintained a shrunken 1,095-vote lead in the race against incumbent Democrat Randy Gordon.

King County still has about 200,000 ballots to tally, and the outcome of the race remains uncertain. Though the 41st District seat had been considered key to a GOP takeover of the Senate last week, Republican defeats elsewhere mean Democrats should keep control of the chamber, albeit by a slimmer margin.

In another still-unresolved 41st District race, incumbent House of Representatives Democrat Marcie Maxwell strengthened the lead against Republican Peter Dunbar to 2,754 votes.

The district includes Talus and other Cougar Mountain communities in Issaquah, plus Newcastle and rural King County.

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.

“While Tuesday was the deadline to cast your vote, this election is not over,” Elections Director Sherril Huff said in a statement. “We want people to know that if they hear from us about a signature issue, there’s still time for their vote to count.”

The office continues to process ballots and report results until the election is certified Nov. 23.

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