Local candidates get a bit of a break on Election Day

Local candidates are spending Election Day as time away from the campaign trail, and many said they were doing little, if any, last-minute campaigning.

Most voters have already returned their ballots in Kitsap County. The county's Election Division reported late Monday that ballots representing 58 percent of the county's registered voters had already been received and readied for counting.

Some candidates were taking Nov. 6 as a welcome day away from the rigors of campaigning.

Sheryl Gordon McCloud, the Bainbridge Island lawyer who is running for a position on the Washington Supreme Court against former justice Richard B. Sanders, said she was spending Election Day off the campaign trail.

Instead, she was at work at her Seattle-based law firm, the Law Offices of Sheryl Gordon McCloud.

"I'm preparing for an argument that I have tomorrow at 9:30 a.m. in the Court of Appeals," she said.

"It's kind of a meditation. I'm doing something that I actually know how to do very well," McCloud laughed.

McCloud said she had no campaign events planned for Election Day.

Rep. Drew Hansen, the Democrat incumbent and 23rd District lawmaker running against Republican James Olsen for Position 2 in the state House, said he would be working for most of Election Day. But not on his campaign.

"I'll try to see my family for a little bit in the afternoon, then, with the rest of the country, watch the returns come in," Hansen said.

His campaign was winding down after a busy weekend.

"I spent the weekend and yesterday calling voters who hadn't returned their ballots yet," he recalled. "I spent this morning at Coleman Dock greeting people from the Bremerton and Bainbridge ferries, and wishing them a happy Election Day and telling them to remember to vote."

Rep. Sherry Appleton, a Democrat seeking another term in the 23rd District's Position 1, was spending Election Day at home.

"I'm spending the last day reading, and watching TV, and getting ready for a party tonight," Appleton said.

Her campaign was out in force this weekend, however, calling voters and waving signs.

Appleton said she was hopeful about tonight's results.

"I'm always anxious," she said. "If you're not anxious, there's something wrong. You don't know how voters are going to vote."

"I've always been lucky that I have such a loyal constituency," Appleton added. "It has always been an honor and privilege to serve them. I'm just hoping they do it again."

Tony Stephens, the Republican who's challenging Appleton in the 23rd District, said he was spending much of Election Day inviting folks to tonight's celebration at the Cloverleaf in Bremerton.

Stephens spent the weekend devoted to get-out-the-vote efforts.

His mood was upbeat on the final day of his first-ever quest for public office.

"I feel very good about the general upswing and the call for individual liberty to take a better position in politics," Stephens said.

Not every candidate was finding Election Day to be completely stress-free.

"It's like waiting for a verdict," said Karen Klein, who is running for Kitsap Superior Court judge, Position 7 against Jennifer Forbes of Poulsbo.

Klein wasn't taking any breaks during the final hours of voting on Tuesday, Nov. 6. She spent the morning making phone calls to voters before heading out for some last-minute campaigning.

Her first stop was a function at Office Xpats, followed by more meet-and-greets.

"I am probably going to go down to the ferries again," Klein said.

Klein said she is happy with her campaign and has received a groundswell of support from Kitsap residents.

"I'm very proud of what I've done and all the support I've received from around the county," Klein said. "Everywhere I go I get very positive feedback, whether it's at the Navy yard, or at the ferry or on the phone."

Jay Inslee, the former Congressman and current Bainbridge Island resident who is running for governor, had an even more robust day of Democratic Party events planned for Election Day, starting with a 7:30 a.m. handshaking gathering at a park-and-ride in Bellevue.

From there, Inslee was scheduled to visit a campaign office for Dow Constantine, a candidate for King County executive,  in the Seattle neighborhood of Wallingford.

Afterward, Inslee planned to work a phone bank with Everett volunteers before a sign-waving stop in downtown.

A stop to his campaign headquarters in Seattle followed, then more sign-waving in Tacoma, a visit to a phone bank in Auburn, and still more handshaking in Kent before Inslee's departure for an Election Night party in the grand ballroom at the Westin in Seattle.

Rob McKenna, the Republican candidate for governor, started Election Day with a stop at a phone bank in Federal Way to thank volunteers, said Charles McCray, communications director for the McKenna campaign.

Then, it was on to Tacoma, Lakewood and then Puyallup for more of the same.

Later, McKenna visited a restaurant in Ballard to speak with retired teachers about education and pension issues. He then headed over to Seattle's Chinatown-International District to meet with business owners for a tour.

McKenna will wrap up Election Night by joining with supporters at The Hyatt in Bellevue.


Review writer Richard D. Oxley contributed to this report.

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