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McEntire declares victory
and MATTHEW NASH
Jim McEntire is looking forward to beginning work as a Clallam County commissioner after the latest ballot counts showed a 1,000-vote margin between him and opponent Linda Barnfather.
McEntire, a Republican and Port of Port Angeles commissioner, said he was confident enough in his lead that he submitted a letter of resignation to the port, effective Dec. 31, 2011. The port is seeking someone to finish the last two years of McEntire’s six-year term.
The retired U.S. Coast Guard captain said after Monday’s count, which showed him winning with 52 percent of the votes, it was apparent he won.
“I wish Linda Barnfather the very best in the days ahead,” he said. “She ran a strong race and I salute her courage and fortitude in standing for election.
It is not an easy thing to run for office.”
McEntire said his touchstones as commissioner will be keeping county taxes level and doing everything possible to push the county’s economy forward.
Barnfather, a Democrat and legislative assistant to Rep. Kevin Van De Wege, said it was a privilege to run for office and she appreciates the support of her family, friends and all who voted for her.
“It deepens my commitment to serve my community as a legislative assistant,” she said of the campaign.
City council races locked in
In the City of Sequim, the race between incumbent Erik Erichsen and Pete Duncan went without a clear winner until Monday’s afternoon ballot count.
Erichsen received 1,073 votes versus Duncan’s 1,008, which was the closest city race. Duncan and Erichsen split the city’s six precincts in all close races.
Incumbent Laura Dubois was re-elected for Position 2 with 1,289 votes against opponent John Miller’s 902 votes. She won five of six precincts.
Candace Pratt won Susan Lorenzen’s vacant Position 7 seat against Eric Miller with 1,353 votes to 681.
Mayor Ken Hays, for Position 6, was re-elected after running unopposed.
Pratt said voters cast thoughtful ballots and recognized her opponent was not really in the hunt. Eric Miller told the Gazette he conceded the race because Pratt was running such a good campaign.
Despite a few political mailers endorsing Pratt with the incumbents, she said they didn’t campaign together. However, Pratt said she and Dubois went doorbelling together once.
“I entered the race with no agenda and go into (my position) with an open mind,” she said.
Pratt said she and citizens like the direction the city is going.
On election night, Dubois said she was pleased with the early results.
“I’m honored to serve and honored th e citizens want me to serve again,” she said.
Dubois and Erichsen could not be reached for further comment.