Kirkland’s two incumbent Democratic State Reps. Larry Springer and Roger Goodman both took solid leads over their two Republican challengers from Redmond, Jim Thatcher and Joel Hussey respectively, in early returns from King County Elections.
In Position 1, Goodman led early returns from the general election with about 44 percent of the vote counted, 56.1 percent to Hussey’s 43.7 percent, at 22,236 vs. 17,313 votes. Springer held an even greater lead over Thatcher, with 57.1 percent of the votes counted so far to 42.7 for Thatcher -- 22,535 votes to 16,871.
King County Elections plans to release more vote totals Wednesday afternoon.
Curiously, the two 45th District races in this election shared some similarities, and one big difference. They each pitted conservative Republicans against Democrats with similar views. Hussey and Thatcher both oppose R-74, the gay marriage measure, and I-502, the initiative to decriminalize marijuana. Springer and Goodman support both. The primary focus of both Hussey and Thatcher would be on the economy; the primary focus of Springer and Goodman education.
The two Republicans were both from Redmond, and the two Democrats both from Kirkland. The two Republicans are both challengers, and the two Democrats both incumbents.
But the two races took decidedly different turns. Springer, known as a pragmatic legislator who works across the aisle, vastly outspent his opponent Thatcher, $101,785 to $24,577, according to the state Public Disclosure Commission. Their race remained quiet, with little or no controversy, and most observers gave Thatcher little chance of unseating the veteran incumbent.
The Goodman-Hussey race, however, was seen as much closer, and it is clear state Republicans made a big effort to unseat the incumbent, after Hussey did well in the August primary, getting 45 percent of the vote to Goodman’s 49 percent. Hussey was still outspent by Goodman, $149,078 to $212,105, according to PDC records, but nonetheless generated significant funds for a candidate who has never held office.
A conservative national PAC also launched television ads claiming Goodman had weakened penalties against DUI laws. Yet Goodman has made his reputation on legislation to stiffen penalties, receiving a national award from Mother’s Against Drunk Driving.
The Washington House Republican Committee also filed a complaint against the 45th District Democrats group, alleging it hid the source of $22,000 in contributions to Goodman. The 45th District Democrats called it a political ploy, and listed the sources of the contributions.
For more national and local election results from Kirkland Pathc, click here and here.