Hargrove, Tharinger and Van De Wege take leads in Dem sweep

President Obama charges ahead in General Election returns


It’s nearly a clean sweep for Democrats in Clallam County and surrounding areas as Jim Hargrove makes his bid for state senator and state representative incumbents Steve Tharinger and Kevin Van De Wege took early leads in their races.

Independent Mike Chapman has a lead in the race for County Commissioner Position 2 and Erik Rohrer holds a lead in the race for Superior Court, Position 1.

State senator

In early returns, Hargrove has a large lead in districtwide voting (Clallam, Grays Harbor and Jefferson counties), earning a 68.7-31.3 split. 

In Clallam, Hargrove has a slimmer lead but not much, leading Carter, an independent, by a 61.2-37.8 split.

Carter conceded the race, adding that "It’s like our mamas told us: the more you get to know someone, the harder it is to dislike them."

Carter said Hargrove has promised to correct certain issues that brought him into the race, including Hargrove’s veto of a bill dealing with child rape.

"I’m looking forward to working with him in the future," he said.

State rep races

Tharinger holds a 62.5-37.5 lead over Republican Steve Gale in the legislative district and a 53.8-46.2 lead in Clallam County.

Van De Wege has a 60.7-39.2 lead over independent Craig Durgan in Clallam County and 67.4-32.6 lead overall.

Van De Wege said he’s "very appreciative" of the support he received from voters on the peninsula.

"I’m glad they’re willing to send me back to Olympia for a few more years."

County commissioner

Incumbent Mike Chapman (no party) has a 61.6-38.3 lead against Republican Maggie Roth in the race for County Commissioner Position 2.


Chapman read the results with his wife, Bobbi, and his younger son Anders at the courthouse Tuesday night.

“I’m always honored and humbled with voters’ support,” Chapman said. “I give a lot of credit to Maggie (Roth). She worked hard and ran a clean campaign with no mud slinging.”

For his 2013 goals with Clallam County, Chapman said he wants to continue working with the Department of Ecology to correct the Dungeness Water Rule and to pursue a recent announcement to bring Carlsborg sewer waste to Sequim.

“The economy is still a big issue for people in the county, so we want to keep that front and center,” he said.

With the county’s budget proposal, Chapman said his intention stands not to raise taxes.

Chapman said he was grateful for his family’s continued support, including his older son Larsson.

Chapman’s opponent Maggie Roth learned of the results with her family but said she was in good spirits.

“It’s been like an adventure,” she said. “I learned a lot.”

She plans to pursue a position in politics again and attributes her recent run for commissioner to County Prosecutor Deb Kelly.

“If anyone has time, you should look into running,” she said. “People need to know how their county works.”  

Public Utility District

Incumbent Ted Simpson has a 57.7-42.2 lead over Cindy Kelly in initial ballots counted Tuesday evening in the race for Clallam County Public Utility District Position 1.


Simpson said he was "really pleased" by the vote of confidence.

"It’s been a wonderful opportunity to serve the community."


Superior Court 

Erik Rohrer has a 56.1-43.8 lead against challenger Chris Melly in the race for Clallam County Superior Court Judge Position 1.

State races

In the race for Governor, Democrat Jay Inslee has a 51.7-48.3 lead over Rob McKenna. Clallam County voters like McKenna, however, giving him 52.9 percent of their votes by election night.

Democrat Brad Owen has a lead in Clallam County and in Washington state over Republican Bill Finkbeiner for Lieutenant Governor. Owen has a 51.8-49.2 lead in Clallam and 53.5-46.5 lead overall.

Democrat Kathleen Drew has a slim lead in the race for Secretary of State, owning a 50.4-49.6 lead over Republican Kim Wyman. Clallam voters have Wyman ahead, 54.5-45.5.

In the State Treasurer race, Jim McIntire has a 58.3-41.7 over Sharon Hanek overall and 54.3-45.7 advantage in Clallam County.

Bob Ferguson leads in the race for Attorney General with a 53.2-46.8 lead over Reagan Dunn. Clallam voters prefer Dunn, 50.4-49.6.

U.S. Representative

Port Angeles’ own Derek Kilmer, a Democrat, holds a large lead statewide, earning nearly 60 percent (58.9) of the vote statewide against Republican Bill Driscoll. Kilmer owns a 52.7-47.3 advantage here in Clallam County.


"Tonight’s results show that folks want a congressman who understands what struggling middle-class families and small businesses are going through and will who cut through the partisan gridlock to deliver real results to help them," Kilmer said. 

"We need to get people back to work and get Congress back to work, too.”

“I congratulate Bill on running a vigorous and hard-fought campaign,” said Kilmer. 

U.S. Senator


Across the state, voters are approving Maria Cantwell by a 59.7-40.3 lead over Republican Michael Baumgartner. In Clallam County, Cantwell has a 53.5-46.5 lead.

President/vice president

President Barack Obama and Vice President Joe Biden look like a lock to return to the White House. As of 9:20 p.m. Tuesday night, CNN reports Obama has collected 290 electoral college votes (270 needed to win), though Obama and challenger Mitt Romney have nearly identical figures in the popular vote.

Washington state voters gave President Obama more than 840,000 of their votes Tuesday, 55.5 percent of ballots cast, to Romney’s 42.5 percent.

In Clallam County, Romney and Vice President candidate Paul Ryan earned 49 percent of votes, with Obama and Biden garnering 48.8 percent. 


Statewide initiatives

Washington state voters have approved initiatives regarding legalization of marijuana and affirming a two-thirds vote to raise taxes and the referendum to allow same-sex marriages, but an initiative to fund charter schools is too close to call, according to general election night returns.

Initiative 1185, or the two-thirds tax initiative, is getting big support statewide (64-36 split) and in Clallam County (70-30). The measure would require that legislative actions raising taxes must be approved by two-thirds legislative majorities or receive voter approval.

Initiative 502, on regarding legalization of marijuana, is passing statewide by a 55.5-44.5 advantage. In Clallam County, voters are approving the initiative by similar numbers. The measure would license and regulate marijuana production, distribution and possession for persons older than 21; remove state-law criminal and civil penalties for activities that it authorizes; tax marijuana sales; and earmark marijuana-related revenues.

Initiative 1240, one regarding charter schools, has a slim lead (50.9-49.1) in the state; Clallam voters approved of the initiative by a 54.8-45.2 margin. This measure would authorize up to 40 publicly-funded charter schools open to all students, operated through approved, nonreligious, nonprofit organizations, with government oversight; and modify certain laws applicable to them as public schools.

Referendum 74, regarding same-sex marriages, is passing statewide with 51.9 percent of the 1.6 million votes cast. In Clallam County, voters are rejecting the measure with just 46.7 percent approving of R-74. This bill would allow same-sex couples to marry, preserve domestic partnerships only for seniors and preserve the right of clergy or religious organizations to refuse to perform, recognize or accommodate any marriage ceremony.