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Commissioner of Public Lands, State of Washington
|Steve McLaughlin (R)||347,302||39%|
|Hilary Franz (D)||188,630||21.20%|
|Dave Upthegrove (D)||122,489||13.80%|
|Mary Verner (D)||113,614||12.80%|
|Karen Porterfield (D)||44,393||4.98%|
|Steven M. Nielson (L)||42,130||4.73%|
|John Stillings (D)||32,548||3.65%|
* Race percentages are calculated with data from the Secretary of State's Office, which omits write-in votes from its calculations when there are too few to affect the outcome. The Spokane County Auditor's Office may have slightly different percentages than are reflected here because its figures include any write-in votes.
In the primary races for lieutenant governor and lands commissioner, the editorial board selected candidates who didn’t advance to the general election. The following are our reassessments in those contests. Lt. Governor: State Sen. Cyrus Habib, D-Bellevue, finished first in a crowded field, collecting a mere 22 percent of the vote. Marty McClendon, a Gig Harbor Republican, finished a close second.
Washington’s next public lands commissioner will be expected to preserve forests, water and habitat in the face of more intense wildfires and a changing climate, while also ensuring revenues from logging, land leases and other operations for school construction and other projects.
Community outreach and internal communication were not Goldmark’s strengths. DNR has been beat up over the recent wildfire seasons, and morale is low. Fresh leadership is on the way, but shoring up the agency won’t be easy.
This fall’s race for Washington’s commissioner of public lands – an office that oversees the state’s largest firefighting force and 5.6 million acres of land – is hotly contested since no incumbent is on the ballot.