Tag Archives: Democrats

Simpson waiting for final count, weighing her future plans

Linda Simpson, Republican candidate for Kitsap County Commissioner, District 2, was not available for comment last night after election results came in. The initial tally showed her trailing Democrat Charlotte Garrido by 3,753 votes. The percentage margin was 52 to 47.

Simpson called today to say she was disappointed and somewhat stunned by the results.

“I was kind of hoping it would be the other way around,” she said. “It’s not insurmountable, so there’s a little bit of hope.”

But an update posted by the Kitsap County Auditor at 5 p.m showed the margin between the two had barely budged. Garrido is now leading Simpson by 3,969 votes, with 77,245 votes counted in this race. Kitsap has 39,000 ballots in hand yet to be counted, according to the Washington State Auditor, and all are eligible to vote in the commissioner’s race.

Simpson decided to pursue the commissioner’s seat after seeing considerable success in the 2010 race for 35th District representative, position 2. In that race, she ended up losing to Democrat Fred Finn by a mere 52 votes in Kitsap County. The totals in the four counties that made up the 35th at the time (Kitsap, Grays Harbor, Mason and Thurston) gave 29,543 votes to Finn and 25,724 votes to Simpson, a difference of 3,819 votes.

Simpson today said she went into the homestretch of her campaign for county commissioner feeling optimistic. Not only was she getting support from her own party, but non-Republicans had voiced their intent to cast their ballots for her.

Simpson believes the message that resonated with voters of all political persuasions was her commitment to represent individual rights and give a transparent accounting of how taxpayers’ dollars are spent. On election night, Simpson was almost sure she would win.

“I really felt good about (the campaign),” she said. “I really felt quite surprised and dismayed that the results were the opposite.”

Simpson will wait for the final count to come in before throwing in the towel. But she’s looking ahead to the possibility of a loss. Glass-more-than-half-full type that she is, Simpson, a Navy reservist on leave, said she would take advantage of the down time if she loses the race.

Since running against Finn, Simpson has lost her leg in a motorcycle accident, won four medals in the Warrior Games for injured military members and jumped into the commissioner’s race last summer, less than a year after her injury. Simpson is training for the upcoming Warrior Games in Hawaii. She hopes some day to start a foundation to give financial assistance to military amputees who, unlike herself, lack funds to cope with their disabilities. And to be honest, she could use a little “me” time to relax and regroup, she said.

Simpson does not rule out a future run for public office. “I wouldn’t say never, but I wouldn’t say it’s a high priority on my list right now,” she said.

Three locals, one former local, to attend Democratic national fete

Former Bremerton local Jack Arends will join four others, including outgoing U.S. Rep. Norm Dicks of Belfair, in Charlotte, N.C. for the 2012 Democratic National Convention.

Arends is the son of Bremerton City Councilwoman Carol Arends and helped with her 2009 campaign. He now lives in Everett.

He will be joined by Suquamish Tribal Chairman Leonard Forsman, Bremerton’s Brittany Duff and Belfair’s Marcia Hamilton.

The convention is Sept. 3-6.

Word on the street is Barack Obama and Joe Biden will be the nominees. Still working to confirm that.

Democrats Voted Here

If you are wondering why Democrats held on so well in Washington while across the nation they did not do well at all, the basic answer appears to be that they voted here. Democrats in Washington, despite the dire predictions for them nationally, mailed in their ballots. A Portland pollster makes that case, as well as the one contending that Washington is getting bluer.

Some of the information is included in a story about the county certifying the Nov. 2 election.

Moore Information of Portland, Ore. sent out an analysis (posted below) suggesting that Dino Rossi, Republican challenger for the U.S. Senate here, did better among Republicans than any other Senate candidate in the country. He also won the vote of independents by big numbers. He lost, according to Moore, because incumbent U.S. Sen. Patty Murray did even better among Democrats, and there are more Democrats than there used to be and they didn’t get too depressed to vote here.

Of course, if you read our story from Nov. 1, this may not surprise you at all. The last two paragraphs said this:

Turnout was markedly higher in 1998 and 2006. Carl Olson, Kitsap County Democratic Party chairman, said his party’s get-out-the-vote effort is tracking as well as it did in 2006, when turnout was 68.2 percent.

“My personal sense tells me there may be some surprises,” he said, meaning Democrats may do better than expected. Whether the party’s tracking of those who are solid or lean Democrat means they voted Democrat again, he said, he doesn’t know.

While Democrats lost ground in Washington, what their voters did by voting was prevent a party disaster. They maintained control of both chambers in the state. Locally every Democrat incumbent had a closer race, but they all won.

My hunch is this also explains why late votes, those counted after those from election night, did not break Republican as they have in past elections. Democratic margins, in fact, grew larger.

Moore’s analysis, co-written with Hans Kaiser, also with Moore Information, follows:

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Democratic Leadership Wants Derek Kilmer in Ways & Means Post

State Sen. Derek Kilmer, D-Gig Harbor would serve as vice chairman of the capital budget in the Ways & Means Committee under a proposal made by Democratic leadership this week. The move means he would no longer chair the Higher Education & Workforce Development Committee, but would put him in a key role in the prime budget-writing committee in the state Senate.

State Sen. Phil Rockefeller, D-Bainbridge Island, would continue to chair the Environment, Water & Energy Committee.

The full body of Senate Democrats will vote on the proposal when legislators go to Olympia for meetings on Dec. 7 and 8.

The press release from the Senate Democrats follows.

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The Political Stereotype Game

I’m going to take a calculated risk here and wade into the shark-infested waters of political stereotypes.

I wouldn’t be the first on this blog to do so.

On Tuesday, I Interviewed twin brothers Patrick and Nathan Griffin-Hall from Port Orchard, 27, who both filed as candidates for precinct committee officer. Since they live together, they both filed for the same precinct, but they won’t be facing each other in the primary because Patrick’s a Republican, Nathan’s a Democrat.

Just for fun, let’s see how your expectations play out, as you try to guess which brother is which from the set of attributes and characteristics below. Just answer Republican or Democrat after the question.

Of course if you’ve read the story, you’ll have most of the answers.

OK, here we go.

Has a beard.


Works as a psychiatric aide for Kitsap Mental Health.

Is an animal control officer for the Kitsap Humane Society.

Loves rock music of all eras.

Runs marathons.

Put a 10-foot diameter red rug with an official looking star in the middle of their living room (it was a cast-off from a department store jewelry department).

Has backpacked through at least a dozen foreign countries.

Has an “active social life with friends and family.”

Graduated from South Kitsap High School.

Attended military school.

Thinks Sarah Palin was unqualified for the office of president.

Is a proponent of individual property rights.

Rescued an obese black cat from the humane society.

Works swing shift.

Works days.

How did you do? To find out, look for the answers later today on this post.

Unions Cold to Democrats

Before last week’s presentation in Port Orchard by the state’s Chief Economist, Arun Raha, state Rep. Larry Seaquist, D-Gig Harbor, mentioned to me his interest in what the state’s unions were planning to do. Chiefly, it appeared they were prepared to withhold endorsements from many legislators, because legislators didn’t make state employees very happy during the 2010 session.

His interest was well-founded. Instead of funneling money through the state Democratic party, the unions agreed to be more specific, which means no candidate in the 35th District gets any money. Seaquist and his Senate counterpart Derek Kilmer get no support in the 26th. In the 23rd state Rep. Christine Rolfes and state Sen. Phil Rockefeller, both Bainbridge Island Democrats, are also left off the list.

On the money list from districts in this county are state Rep. Sherry Appleton, D-Poulsbo and Democratic challenger to Jan Angel, Sumner Schoenike from Gig Harbor.

The (Tacoma) News Tribune has more context here and here.

The first question is how much this matters. We don’t pay attention to endorsements all that much, especially when they are so predictable from election to election. This item is newsworthy because it strays from history, but it isn’t as if the unions are endorsing Republicans.

Secondly, could this withholding amount to a perverse positive to some Democrats left out of the union money trail this year? It may seem a stretch, but could there be enough moderates out there who would actually see this as a plus, because it offers the perception that the Democrats left off the gravy train are not completely beholden to the dreaded “special interests?” Should Seaquist, Kilmer, Haigh and Finn actually write “thank you” notes to the unions?

Were I a spinmeister I would probably try to help find a way to sell this as kind of good news. I wouldn’t put “Not endorsed by the unions” on my campaign literature, but I might talk about how sad it is to not get the endorsement but aw shucks the 2010 session sure required some tough choices and we couldn’t make everyone happy, not even ones who have consistently written us checks.

35th Dems Side with Incumbents

The 35th District Democrats met over the weekend and endorsed all three legislative incumbents. State Sen. Tim Sheldon, D-Potlatch and state Reps. Fred Finn of Olympia and Kathy Haigh of Shelton all received the party’s nod for re-election.

That might not merit even a blog post sometimes, but in the 35th such an endorsement is not a given.

In 2006 the party endorsed Kyle Taylor Lucas over Sheldon, who has always been registered as a Democrat but often votes contrary to how the majority in his party would have him vote.