Many voters didn’t participate in primary election
By Rob Ollikainen
Peninsula Daily News
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Of the 67,765 registered voters who received a ballot in the two counties, 32,225 had returned a ballot to their respective auditor’s office.
The Clallam County Auditor’s Office counted an additional 4,408 ballots from the mail and drop box locations on Wednesday.
“This brings the number of ballots returned to 19,992,” Clallam County Auditor Patty Rosand said.
“That is 43.58 percent of the 45,879 voters who have now voted.
“We will begin opening those ballots and hope to have them reported on by the close of business [today], or Friday morning.”
Meanwhile, the Jefferson County Auditor’s Office processed 9,370 of the 21,886 ballots mailed to registered voters there on election night.
County Auditor Donna Eldridge said her office received 2,863 new ballots in Wednesday’s mail.
With the new ballots, voter participation in Jefferson County is up to 56.84 percent, Eldridge said.
This is a jump from the 43.21 percent number that was reported from the original election figures on Tuesday night.
Eldridge, who originally predicted a 58 percent turnout, said that the jump in votes corresponds with what happened in previous years.
“In Jefferson County when there is a statewide election people wait before submitting their ballots,” Eldridge said.
Jefferson County will update its election results on Friday.
In the gubernatorial race, Jefferson County voters sided with Democratic candidate Jay Inslee (58.2 percent) over Republican Rob McKenna (34.2 percent).
Clallam County voters were more evenly spit on the state’s marquee contest, with 45.3 percent siding with McKenna and 43.3 percent voting for Inslee.
Inslee was leading by 4 percentage points statewide.
In other statewide races, Jefferson County voters sided with incumbent U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell, D-Mountlake Terrace (66.5 percent) and Democratic Congressional candidate Derek Kilmer (61.7 percent).
Cantwell and Kilmer also led in Clallam County, albeit with smaller margins.
Cantwell garnered 52.8 percent of the Clallam County electorate. Kilmer, who grew up in Port Angeles, had 48.4 percent of the vote in his native county.
The primary election will be certified in both counties on Aug. 21.
Reporter Charlie Bermant contributed to this report.
Reporter Rob Ollikainen can be reached at 360-452-2345 ext. 5072 or at email@example.com.
Last modified: August 08. 2012 6:12PM