Parties to party hearty as results start to roll in

By SUSANNA RAY

Herald Writer

We may not know the outcome of some races until after Thanksgiving, but if you’re in a political partying mood, there are plenty of places to go and scream with your favorite candidates as the early voting returns come in tonight.

About 40 percent of Snohomish County’s 340,000 registered voters are absentee voters. Those ballots don’t have to be mailed until today, which means a good chunk of them won’t arrive at the auditor’s office until later this week. Statewide, nearly a million ballots are expected to be at the mercy of snail mail as of tonight.

"It will be risky at best to draw any conclusions about close races until next week at the earliest," Secretary of State Ralph Munro said. The counties have to finish their tabulations by the day before Thanksgiving, but the state has two weeks after that to certify the vote results.

Quite a few races are neck and neck this year, including the contests for president, U.S. Senate, 2nd Congressional District and several Snohomish and Island county legislative spots.

If any of those are less than half a percent apart, officials must do a re-count.

Whether reveling or nail biting is in store, here’s where you can share the esprit de corps of fellow election watchers once the polls close at 8 p.m.:

Nashville, Tenn., is the place to be for Democrats. That’s where the big Al Gore party will be tonight. But Seattle’s Westin Hotel, 1900 Fifth Ave., is the gathering place for Democratic stars in this state, including Gary Locke, Maria Cantwell, Rosemary McAuliffe, Al O’Brien, Jeanne Edwards and Mike Cooper.

In Everett, head to the Monte Cristo, 1507 Wall St., for Rick Larsen’s party or The Flying Pig Restaurant, 2929 Colby Ave., for Aaron Reardon’s.

In Snohomish, Hans Dunshee is hosting an open house at 506 10th St., and Liz Loomis will be at Fred’s Rivertown Ale House, 1114 First St.

On Camano Island, Mary Margaret Haugen’s party starts at 7, at 1268 N. Olsen Road.

In Langley, Dave Anderson will be at Neil’s Clover Patch Cafe, 2850 E. Highway 525 at 9 p.m.

In Shoreline, Jay Inslee’s party will be at The Gathering Place, 17712 NE 15th Ave.

The Republican extravaganza — 20,000 are expected — is in Austin, Texas, the headquarters for George W. Bush. If you’re not Texas-bound, however, head to the Hyatt Regency in Bellevue, 900 Bellevue Way NE. That’s where John Carlson, Slade Gorton, Dan McDonald and others will be.

Arlington’s the place to go in Snohomish County. John Koster, Val Stevens, Kirk Pearson, Dan Kristiansen, Kelly Barlean and others will be at the Hawthorne Inn, 16710 Smokey Point Blvd.

In Lynnwood, join Renee Radcliff and Stan Monlux at the 21st District Republican headquarters, 4001 198th St. SW.

In Clinton, Norma Smith’s party starts at 7:30 p.m. at 6177 Turkey Hill Road.

In Kenmore, Leo Van Hollebeke’s party will be at 7104 NE 181st St.

Green Party supporters can meet in downtown Seattle at the Speakeasy Cafe, 2304 Second Ave. Libertarians are gathering in Spanaway at 19215 Sixth Ave. E.

The Snohomish County Elections Committee for Gays, Lesbians, Bisexuals and Transgenders, is hosting an election-night party at the Everett Underground, 1212 California St. in Everett.

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