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BOISE – Idaho’s campaign finance disclosure deadline came and went Wednesday without any word on who funded a statewide TV ad campaign in favor of controversial school reform measures – and backers say they don’t plan to disclose their donors. Former state Rep. Debbie Field, the former two-time campaign manager for Idaho Gov. Butch Otter, said potential donors to the campaign backing the reform laws are given two options: Donate to the official Yes for Education campaign, which means their contributions will be reported; or give anonymously through two new groups Field is chairing.
It may have started as a joke, but the controversial photo of state Rep. Matt Shea standing on his Democratic challenger’s property has become a political hot potato for Republicans. The chairman of the Spokane County Republican Party, who was characterized in The Spokesman-Review and other media last week as backing Shea’s decision to post the photo to his Facebook page, now says his position was misunderstood and that he’d actually been trying to persuade Shea to remove the photo.
Spokane County Commissioner Bonnie Mager conceded defeat Wednesday in her bid for a second term. The election is to be certified Friday, and the latest results show challenger Al French with 50.8 percent of the vote to Mager’s 49.2 percent.
I have a confession: I’m not 100 percent sure who I voted for in the Supreme Court race. I’m pretty sure. Almost positive. Odds are 5-to-1 or better that I recall which of these guys – Justice Richard Sanders or probable winner Charlie Wiggins – got my ill-informed, ill-considered vote.
One sure sign that fall is easing into winter is that political types are complaining about how long it takes to count ballots in Washington state. This rant usually starts about three days after an election, when the results of most races have been known for two days but a few close contests hang in the balance. This year, the main target of the whining is a state Supreme Court race, which on Friday was still somewhat in doubt.
Voters in King County have helped Charlie Wiggins hang onto the lead in his bid to oust incumbent Justice Richard Sanders.
Spokane County Treasurer Skip Chilberg conceded defeat Tuesday to his general election challenger, Rob Chase. Chilberg said he called Chase to offer his congratulations.
Former Appeals Court Judge Charlie Wiggins took a narrow lead over incumbent Justice Richard Sanders in Washington’s tight Supreme Court race Tuesday afternoon. An analysis of voting patterns suggests Wiggins will finish ahead of Sanders and take his place on the state’s highest court when all remaining ballots are counted.
Challenger Charlie Wiggins is cutting into Justice Richard Sanders’ lead in the contest for a state Supreme Court seat.
With the 2010 election all over but the counting – admittedly the counting still is important in a few races – it seems appropriate to look back over the campaign. It was an avalanche of nasty ads, debates over debates, commercials and visits from out-of-state big shots played out against a backdrop of voters worried about their next paycheck, house payment or bag of groceries. And that’s looking at things as an optimist. Maybe the best that can be said about it is, it’s over. But before it fades from memory, here are some of the highlights and lowlifes of Campaign 2010.
BOISE – While much of the nation endorsed a sharp change in political direction Tuesday, Idaho went its own way – the same way it’s headed for the past four years, only more so. “Here in Idaho, it’s a different story – it’s about staying the course,” said Idaho Republican Party Chairman Norm Semanko. “It’s about fiscal responsibility, about understanding that government needs to be small.”
OLYMPIA – Washington politicians who had any doubt the public is in no mood for more taxes should have had that cleared up Tuesday. For the budget struggles ahead next year, voter sentiment is clear: Don’t ask us for more money, cut the budget. Voters sank a proposal for a state income tax on the wealthy, struck down temporary taxes on soda, candy, bottled water and some processed foods, and reinstated a two-thirds supermajority for passing any new taxes.
Democratic incumbent U.S. Rep. Rick Larsen continues to expand his lead over Republican challenger John Koster.
BOISE – Here’s why it’s not surprising that all four constitutional amendments on this year’s Idaho ballot passed, and passed fairly easily: That’s our history. All 11 previous constitutional amendments that have appeared on Idaho’s ballot since 1998 have won approval from Idaho voters, including complex measures dealing with endowment investment reform. Even when amendments are complicated and difficult to understand, Idaho voters tend to support them.
Washington elections officials say a late surge in ballots will likely push the turnout for Tuesday’s election to 70 percent or higher.
Democrat Patty Murray won a fourth term in the U.S. Senate, building a lead of nearly 50,000 votes over Republican rival Dino Rossi as counting continued Thursday. Faced with a near mathematical impossibility of catching her even though hundreds of thousands of votes remain to be counted, Rossi conceded Thursday evening.