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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Eye On Olympia

Primary election postmortem: Everybody’s happy…

After an afternoon of phone calls and emails with political consultants, campaign managers, etc., it's nothing but day-after sunshine and candies.

Everyone I talked to claimed to be happy -- usually very happy -- with the results. Incumbents said challengers fell short of expectations, and challengers said incumbents should have done better.

"It is clear we are on track for victory," said a memo from Superintendent of Public Instruction candidate Randy Dorn, who so far has gotten 31 percent of the vote in a six-way race.

Across the way, incumbent superintendent Terry Bergeson's campaign was equally pleased with her 36 percent. "By every honest analysis, Dorn suffered a crushing defeat last night," is how campaign guy Alex Hays saw the results. "I was amazed at how well it was for us."

At Lands Commissioner Doug Sutherland's campaign, Todd Myers was "very pleased" with Sutherland's near-tie with Democratic challenger Peter Goldmark. "Four years ago we got 41 percent in the primary," Myers noted. And Sutherland polled about 5 points better than gubernatorial candidate Dino Rossi, he said, a fact not meant to knock Rossi but to suggest that Democratic turnout was higher in the primary.

Goldmark's campaign: equally happy. "We're the challenger," said campaign manager Heather Melton. "We've come a long way."

And attorney general? Incumbent Rob McKenna, with 56 percent, called last night to say how pleased he was. Challenger John Ladenburg "is throwing a lot of punches, but he's not landing them," McKenna said.

The Ladenburg campaign's take, with its 44 percent? "The results are good," said campaign manager David Sawyer. "We're at 45 percent without doing a thing. We have nowhere to go but up."

Short takes and breaking news from the Washington Legislature and the state capital.