Fleetwood versus Ericksen: What Happened in Round One?Permalink +
Tue, Aug 12, 2014, 10:52 am // Riley Sweeney
Election watchers had plenty to chew on after the final round of ballots were counted last week. When the dust had settled, Ericksen beat Fleetwood 57% to 43%. Ericksen's allies declared victory, while many Democrats were left wondering what happened.
As always, when looking at election numbers, there are no certainties. I have no magic device that lets me peer into the hearts of men and see what motivates them to vote one way or another, but you can assemble theories and find evidence to support those theories.
Fewer people voted in this election than any similar primary. Just take a look at the turnout percentage in Whatcom County over the last several years - it is pretty clear that this is an outlier.
Traditionally, the lower the turnout, the worse Democrats do. Why the poor turnout? This is one of the earliest primaries Washington state has ever seen, meaning many people are clued out of the electoral process, instead waiting till fall before becoming involved.
Only half the voters that will turn in a ballot in November voted in the primary. Around 30,000 people voted in the primary and current predictions are that somewhere between 60,000-65,000 people will vote in this race in November. The group of people who vote in the primary tend to be older, more conservative and more likely to support incumbents, while the general election crowd is younger, more environmental and more likely to "throw the bums out."
Beyond that, of all the competitive Senate races, Seth pulled even with the other Democratic challengers. With the exception of Mike Isenhower, the Democrat challenging Republican Sen. Andy Hill in the Democratic leaning 45th LD (Kirkland), the rest of the Democratic challengers this cycle only received around 43% of the vote. Shari Song, who we covered here, received 43%, Judy Arbogast running against ALEC member Sen. Jan Angel in Kitsap County received 43%, Tami Green out of Tacoma received 43%. The point is that it was a rough night for all the Democrats running and Fleetwood is still one of the top pickup opportunities in the state.
Finally, the state Republicans bombarded Fleetwood with negative mailers during the run up to the primary. The Fleetwood campaign responded with a few mailers over Ericksen's ethical troubles but not nearly with the same volume of pieces. As the Democratic candidates for Whatcom County Council proved last year, negative campaigning works and it may have depressed votes in this race.
So what does this mean? For partisans on both sides, they will find all the justification they need to keep fighting hard. My take is that the 42nd is a difficult district for Democrats and it has grown harder since Linville was ousted in 2010. I can count on my hand the number of Democrats who have a fighting chance to beat Doug Ericksen. Seth Fleetwood is one of those people. I think this race is still very winnable. But only if people turn up and vote.
Tue, Aug 12, 2014, 10:52 am // Riley SweeneySome Context for the Primary Results
Fri, Aug 08, 2014, 10:10 am // John ServaisUpdated Wed evening. The Tuesday evening 8:20 pm Auditor report on the election is in.
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Thu, Jul 24, 2014, 11:40 am // Riley SweeneyNorthwest Citizen has conducted a phone poll of likely voters, with some surprising results!
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Thu, May 01, 2014, 10:21 pm // Guest writerMove to Amend is a national movement to amend the U.S. Constitution and define persons as people and speech as not money.
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Wed, Apr 30, 2014, 8:20 am // John ServaisRiley posted this morning that Seth Fleetwood has decided to challenge Doug Ericksen for state senate in the 42nd District.
1 comments; last on Apr 30, 2014
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11 comments; last on Oct 03, 2013
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1 comments; last on Feb 23, 2013
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Sat, Feb 09, 2013, 1:14 am // John ServaisThe proponents have avoided the issues on the Park District as the close of voting nears this weekend.
2 comments; last on Feb 12, 2013
Wed, Feb 06, 2013, 11:42 pm // John ServaisWhen is a vote No the most positive and common sense action? Check the park district opponents website to learn why.
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Tue, Feb 05, 2013, 1:59 pm // John ServaisThis Park District proposal has several ironic twists and facets - some involving the advocates.
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Thu, Jan 31, 2013, 1:26 am // Guest writerGuest post by long time south side resident Marci (Hanson) Haskell on why to vote no on the Park District
5 comments; last on Feb 01, 2013
Wed, Jan 30, 2013, 10:40 am // John ServaisThe Park District is a panic action that over taxes a small group. A city wide solution is by far the better way to proceed.
13 comments; last on Feb 01, 2013
Thu, Jan 24, 2013, 5:09 pm // John ServaisUpdated Sat, Jan 26. A primer on the special Parks District election - and where to find more info.
15 comments; last on Jan 31, 2013
Thu, Jan 24, 2013, 10:49 am // Guest writerBy Bill Geyer. South Bellingham citizens vote over the next couple weeks on a self tax to form a park district and pay the Chuckanut Ridge debt.
30 comments; last on Jan 31, 2013
Tue, Jan 15, 2013, 5:53 pm // Riley SweeneyRiley looks into Ericksen's legislative efforts this session
1 comments; last on Jan 22, 2013
Sun, Nov 04, 2012, 10:21 am // Paul deArmondThe Whatcom county Voters’ Pamphlet containing misleading and untrue statements by unregistered, unaccountable and anonymous front groups.
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Wed, Oct 31, 2012, 8:29 am // Riley SweeneyHere's your shot at fame and glory as a political pundit
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Thu, Oct 18, 2012, 4:15 pm // Riley SweeneyRiley talks about the Seattle Times, Newsweek and the future of Print Media
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7 comments; last on Dec 02, 2012
Tue, Oct 02, 2012, 9:22 am // Riley SweeneyRiley examines Rep. Vincent Buys' legislative record
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Fri, Sep 28, 2012, 9:45 am // Guest writerJack Petree, guest writer, points out serious flaws in Bellingham Prop 1, the Home Fund, that is intended to help the poor get housing.
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Fri, Jul 20, 2012, 5:44 pm // Riley SweeneyRiley gathers quotes, video footage and pictures from the recent tea party forum
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Sun, Jun 17, 2012, 9:52 am // Paul deArmondPort Commissioner Scott Walker and attorney Frank Chmelik get caught ballot-rigging again
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Fri, May 18, 2012, 11:27 am // Riley SweeneyA short plea for public involvement from Riley
Wed, May 09, 2012, 6:11 am // John ServaisToday's Cascadia Weekly rips the Port staff on changed waterfront plans and sees 5 commissioners as possible solution to poor decision making.
2 comments; last on May 10, 2012
Mon, Apr 30, 2012, 10:54 pm // John ServaisSeveral people will be urging the Port of Bellingham commissioners to place the question of expanding to 5 commissioners on the ballot.
Sat, Apr 28, 2012, 10:09 am // John ServaisA county wide initiative will allow voters to decide whether to expand the Port of Bellingham commission from 3 to 5 commissioners.
1 comments; last on Apr 28, 2012
Tue, Apr 24, 2012, 12:07 pm // Riley SweeneyRiley attended the Whatcom GOP Convention and reports back
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Wed, Apr 04, 2012, 3:16 pm // John ServaisState law allows us to pass an initiative and increase the number of port commissioners from three to five. Thanks to Harriet Spanel.
4 comments; last on Apr 05, 2012
Sun, Feb 19, 2012, 6:37 pm // Riley SweeneyRiley at The Political Junkie attends a forum of Congressional Candidates, and a town hall meeting in Lynden
Tue, Jan 31, 2012, 9:36 am // Paul deArmondPort Commissioner Scott Walker and attorney Frank Chmelik get caught ballot-rigging again
Thu, Jan 19, 2012, 6:29 pm // Riley SweeneyRiley discusses the Jail, Jack Louws, and an impartial council with our new Council Chair
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Wed, Jan 11, 2012, 10:04 am // Riley SweeneyLatest from the Political Junkie on a variety of subjects
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Wed, Nov 16, 2011, 2:31 pm // Riley SweeneyRiley takes a look at Louws/Ericksen in the search for moderate Republicans
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Tue, Nov 15, 2011, 7:21 pm // John ServaisResults are posted as of 5:21 pm. Use links at top of right side column.
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Mon, Nov 14, 2011, 6:52 pm // John ServaisKelli Linville takes safe lead for mayor of Bellingham. Sam Crawford is leading for county council.
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Sun, Nov 13, 2011, 4:45 pm // Guest writerGuest writer, Stephen K. Schuck, a citizen elections observer, explains the processes and problems with vote counting
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