EVERETT — Snohomish County fire commissioner Guy Palumbo moved closer Thursday to beating state Rep. Luis Moscoso and earning a chance to compete for state Senate this fall.
Palumbo opened up a 350-vote lead on Moscoso following Thursday’s ballot count in the 1st Legislative District. Palumbo started the day with a 76-vote lead after trailing Moscoso by 35 votes on election night.
The two Democratic candidates are battling for second place in this week’s primary and the right to face frontrunner Republican Mindie Wirth, of Bothell. Wirth had 40.3 percent followed by Palumbo with 30.7 percent and Moscoso at 29 percent.
The top two finishers will duel in November with the winner succeeding the retiring state Sen. Rosemary McAuliffe.
“It is going in the right direction,” Palumbo said Thursday. “I feel good about that because we closed strong. I think it means our message was resonating at the door in the final days.”
The Snohomish County Auditor’s Office will release the next update of results Friday.
Meanwhile, a proposed countywide sales-tax hike continues to lose.
Proposition 1, which would raise the sales tax by 0.2 percent — an extra 2 cents on a $10 purchase — was being rejected by 50.4 percent of voters. The margin increased slightly from Wednesday with 743 more votes opposed out of 89,795 cast.
Snohomish County’s elected leaders endorsed the criminal justice sales tax as way to bolster the ranks of police, prosecutors and other public safety professionals. They also pledged to embark on new approaches to combat a rise in opioid use that they have labeled an epidemic
Only a simple majority is required to pass the measure.
In Marysville, a proposed 0.1 percent sales-tax increase for criminal justice services is still trailing. After Thursday’s tally, the measure was being rejected by 53.3 percent of voters. The margin had grown to 486 votes.
And in the 7th Congressional District, state Rep. Brady Walkinshaw solidified his lead on King County Councilman Joe McDermott in their all-Democrat fight for second place. The winner will face Democratic state Sen. Pramila Jayapal in November to replace retiring Democratic Congressman Jim McDermott.
Jayapal is winning the primary with 40 percent followed by Walkinshaw with 21.3 percent and McDermott, no relation to the congressman, with 20.5 percent.