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Cantwell re-elected to Senate; McMorris to return to House

Democrats held onto their U.S. Senate seat and picked up at least two Eastern Washington legislative positions and several county offices.

But the anti-Republican tide failed to topple freshman U.S. Rep. Cathy McMorris, who handily defeated Democratic challenger Peter Goldmark in Washington’s sprawling 5th Congressional District.

McMorris, a Republican from Kettle Falls, was leading Goldmark with 55 percent of the vote, based on unofficial election results Tuesday night. Goldmark, an Okanogan rancher, said he wanted a chance to fully review the initial results before deciding whether to concede.

Democratic U.S. Sen. Maria Cantwell easily defeated Republican challenger Mike McGavick, capturing 56 percent of the vote.

Meanwhile, the Spokane County Commission will include a Democrat for the first time in years.

Neighborhood activist Bonnie Mager outpolled Republican incumbent Phil Harris, drawing 53 percent of the ballots cast. The upset victory stopped Harris from becoming the second-longest serving commissioner in Spokane County history.

“I think the national trend is showing up in the local election,” Harris said Tuesday night. “I’ve been honored by the people to serve 12 years. It don’t get much better than that.”

Democratic candidate for Spokane County assessor, Judy Personett, was holding a narrow lead over Republican incumbent Ralph Baker, while Democrat D.E. “Skip” Chilberg was coasting to victory in the county Treasurer’s race over Republican Bob Wrigley.

Statewide, voters defeated a ballot measure that would have abolished the state’s tax on multimillion-dollar estates, and a separate measure that would have required government to reimburse property owners for lost value because of land-use regulations.