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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Dalton ahead in tight race for Spokane County auditor

Republican Bob McCaslin and incumbent Democratic Spokane County Auditor Vicky Dalton

Democratic incumbent Vicky Dalton is up by 4 percentage points in the race for Spokane County auditor, but if the results of the August primary election are any indication, the race is far from over.

Dalton, a Democrat who has led the county auditor’s office since the late 1990s, has 52% of the vote so far. That puts her ahead of Republican challenger Bob McCaslin, a sitting state representative.

A 4-point margin may sound safe, but later arriving votes tend to skew Republican.

During the August primary, Dalton had a 9-point lead after election night. After all the votes had been counted, her lead had shrunk to just under 4 percentage points.

Historically, county auditor races don’t attract much attention. Many voters don’t even know what the job entails. Auditors record and preserve official documents, administer motor vehicle licenses, manage county financial services and oversee elections.

That last responsibility has brought county auditors more attention in recent years as false claims of election fraud, predominantly spread by Republicans, have become ubiquitous.

Dalton has said she believes election misinformation and disinformation pose a serious threat to democracy. She’s repeatedly said on the campaign trail that her office does an excellent job making sure Spokane County’s elections are “safe, secure, accurate and accessible.”

McCaslin has repeatedly shied away from interview requests and debates on the campaign trail, but he’s called for audits to the county’s 2020 election and co-hosted a meeting headlined by Seth Keshel, who argues President Joe Biden’s victory appears to have been illegitimate based on past voting trends.