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Turnout is lagging so far for Primary Election in Kitsap County

A day-by-day review of ballot returns shows that fewer than 4,000 votes have been returned each weekday since ballots were mailed starting June 20. A total of 27,117 ballots were returned to Kitsap County for counting through Friday, Aug. 3. - Brian Kelly / Bainbridge Island Review
A day-by-day review of ballot returns shows that fewer than 4,000 votes have been returned each weekday since ballots were mailed starting June 20. A total of 27,117 ballots were returned to Kitsap County for counting through Friday, Aug. 3.
— image credit: Brian Kelly / Bainbridge Island Review

Most voters in Kitsap County have yet to cast their ballots for this week's Primary Election.

As of Friday, Aug. 3, approximately 18.5 percent of ballots in the county had been returned.

Kitsap County Elections Manager Dolores Gilmore said Tuesday's Primary will garner a “fairly light turnout” with an estimated 40 percent of the 146,384 registered voters in the county expected to participate.

The estimate, if it holds true, represents nearly a double-digit drop in voter turnout over the past decade.

In recent years, turnout during primaries held in a presidential election year has hovered around the 50-percent mark in Kitsap County.

During the last Primary held in a presidential year, turnout in Kitsap County was pegged at 49.6 percent. The statewide average for turnout was 42.6 percent.

In the 2004 Primary, voter turnout here was 51.8 percent. The statewide average was 45 percent.

And in the 2000 Primary, voter turnout was 50 percent. The statewide average was 40.8 percent.

Gilmore said that the elections department was expecting to  process about 6,000 ballots today, and that a heavy turnout was expected to materialize on Election Day.

Through Friday, a total of 27,117 ballots had been returned for counting.

The coming Primary is the earliest in state history, and was moved forward so ballots could be sent to people serving in the military overseas.

The first ballots mailed were sent out June 22 to military and overseas voters.

Ballots were mailed to all registered voters in Kitsap County by July 20.

Voters will pick the top two candidates in three key races in the 23rd Legislative District.

For state senator, Republican Bret A. Treadwell is facing off against incumbent Democrat Sen. Christine Rolfes.

For State Representative, Position 1, incumbent Sherry V. Appleton, a Democrat, is hoping to retain her House seat against Republican Tony Stephens.

Three candidates are vying for State Representative, Position 2: Rep. Drew Hansen, the Democratic incumbent; James M. Olsen, a Republican, and Henning B. Larsen, a Democrat.

The candidates for the Kitsap County Commissioner District 1 for Kitsap County are Democrat Robert “Rob” Gelder and Republican Chris Tibbs.

The ballot is also thick with candidates for judicial posts.

For Supreme Court Justice, Position 2: Douglas W. McQuaid, Susan Owens and Scott Stafne are in the running.

For Supreme Court Justice, Position 8, the candidates are Bruce O. Danielson and Steve Gonzalez; for Supreme Court Justice, Position 9, Bruce Hilyer, Sheryl Gordon McCloud, Richard B. Sanders and John W. Ladenburg.

For Court of Appeals Division 2, District 2, Position 2, the field is comprised of Thomas Bjorgen, Pamela (Pam) Loginsky, Thomas (Tom) E. Weaver Jr., Michael Lynch, Brendan Williams and Jim Foley.

For Superior Court Judge Court 7, the candidates are Jennifer Forbes, Rob MacDermid, Bill Houser and Karen Klein.

Also on the ballot are candidates for federal and statewide offices.

For U.S. Senator, the candidates are Sen. Maria Cantwell, Democrat; Michael Baumgartner, Republican; Will Baker, Reform Party; Chuck Jackson, Republican; Timmy "Doc" Wilson, Democrat; Art Coday, Republican; Glen "Stocky" R. Stockwell, Republican; and Mike the Mover, Republican.

For U.S. Representative, in Congressional District 6, the candidates are Jesse Young, Republican; Eric G. Arentz Jr., independent; Derek Kilmer, Democrat; Bill Driscoll, Republican; David "Ike" Eichner, Republican; Stephan Andrew Brodhead, Republican; and Doug Cloud, Republican.

For U.S. Representative, in Congressional District 1, the one-month short term prompted by redistricting, the candidates are Brian Berry, Democrat; Ruth Morrison, Democrat; Laura Ruderman, Democrat; J. Byron Holcomb, Democrat; Darshan Rauniyar, Democrat; John Koster, Republican; Brian Sullivan, Democrat; Steven J. Gerdes, Republican; Bob Champion, independent; Suzan DelBene, Democrat; and Darcy Burner, Democrat.

The Washington state governor's race also presents a crowded field for voters.

The candidates are Rob Hill, Democrat; Rob McKenna, Republican; Jay Inslee, Democrat; James White, independent; Christian Joubert, no party preference; Shahram Hadian, Republican; L. Dale Sorgen, independent; Max Sampson, Republican; and Javier O. Lopez, Republican.

The candidates for lieutenant governor are Glenn Anderson, independent, Republican; Brad Owen, Democrat; James Robert Deal, no party preference; Bill Finkbeiner, Republican; Dave T. Sumner IV, Neopopulist Party; Mark Greene, Party of Commons.

For Washington Secretary of State, the candidates are Jim Kastama, Democrat; David J. Anderson, no party preference; Sam Wright, Human Rights Party; Karen Murray, Constitution Party; Kathleen Drew, Democrat; Kim Wyman, Republican; and Greg Nickels, Democrat.

Four candidates hope to advance in the race for state auditor; Troy Kelley, Democrat; James Watkins, Republican; Mark Miloscia, Democrat; and Craig Pridemore, Democrat.

Three candidates are running for state attorney general: Bob Ferguson, Democrat; Reagan Dunn, Republican; and Stephen Pidgeon, Republican.

For Washington Commissioner of Public Lands, three candidates are on the ballot: Stephen A. Sharon, no party preference; Peter J. Goldmark, Democrat; and Clint Didier, Republican.

Also on the ballot, for insurance commissioner, are John R. Adams, Republican; Mike Kreidler, Democrat; Scott Reilly, Republican; and Brian C. Berend, independent.

The race for Washington Superintendent of Public Instruction is nonpartisan. The candidates are James Bauckman, Randy I. Dorn, Don Hansler, John Patterson Blair and Ronald L. Higgins.

Besides being returned by mail, ballots can be deposited in 24-hour ballot drop boxes available until 8 p.m. Election Day.

The drop box for Bainbridge Island is located at the Bainbridge Island Fire Department at 8895 Madison Ave. NE.

A full list of ballot deposit locations can be found at http://www.kitsapgov.com/aud/elections/ballot_deposit.htm.

Kitsap County will post election results at www.kitsapgov.com/aud/elections starting at 8:15 p.m. Aug. 7.

Subsequent tallies will be posted online at approximately 5 p.m. each work day until the certification of the election Aug. 21.

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